Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Below you will find the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions. If you have any questions that are not addressed here, please feel free to contact us at or 617-783-2600 x 12.

Does my child need to be fluent in both German and English to attend GISB?

That depends on the grade to which they are applying. Children who apply for admission to our Preschool and Kindergarten programs do not need to speak or understand German. Starting in grade 1 applicants must demonstrate a good understanding of German. Since many of our subjects are taught exclusively in German, we want to make sure that students are comfortable participating in classroom activities and completing homework assignments in German. Applicants entering grades 1 – 5 who have little to no German language skills may be eligible for the GISB Fast Track, an accelerated language program for strong candidates. Applicants to our Middle and Upper School must be fluent and literate in German.

While it is not necessary that German is spoken at home, it is proven that children who have opportunities to converse and read in German outside of school have an overall easier time achieving fluency and literacy.

English fluency is not required at any grade level. Our outstanding English Department provides differentiated instruction for both the novice and native English speaker alike, from Kindergarten through 12th grade.

Are applicants required to take any tests prior to admission?

While we do not require specific admission tests, applicants whose primary language is not German must be tested by one of our German as a Second Language teachers to ensure that we can meet your child’s language-learning needs. This can be done during a “Schnuppertag” (visit day) or via Skype, if a visit is not possible. We also request the previous two years of report cards when applicable.

Where do I find the supply list for my child’s grade?

The 2018 – 2019 supply lists & reading lists are posted in the Academics section under Forms & Policies.

What do I need to submit to the Nurse’s office for my student?

Massachusetts requires all students to have a valid health form on file. The Massachusetts School Heath Record must be completed by the student’s pediatrician and is valid for one year. Physical requirements for 2018/19 and the Massachusetts School Immunization requirements can be found here.

What is the difference between Preschool and Kindergarten?

English: Preschool = German: Kindergarten (ages 2.9-5)

English: Kindergarten = German: Vorschule (ages 5-6)

What are the requirements for Preschool admission?

Children must be 2.9 years old by September 1 of the year in which they will enroll in order to be able to enter our Preschool. They should be reliably toilet trained (or very close to it!) by the beginning of the school year. For more information please contact our admission department.

Does GISB have a cafeteria or lunch program?

We do not have a cafeteria, but families have the option to order lunch through Hot lunches are dropped off at GISB by the smartlunches delivery ambassadors. Each meal is labeled individually with the student’s name, classroom and teacher. For more information, please visit their website.