Frequently Asked Questions
International Baccalaureate Diploma Program at CISK

What the Program Offers:

    The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme is a world-renowned educational curriculum that is taught in over 4000 schools globally. The program was designed to prepare students for a successful future no matter the direction they choose. It aims to develop students who have a wide range of knowledge, students who flourish intellectually, emotionally, ethically, and socially and who are capable of thinking critically and embracing the multi-faceted world around them.  

The Curriculum:

    The Diploma Programme is comprised of six subject groups and the DP core which consists of the Theory of Knowledge (TOK), Creativity, Action and Service (CAS), and the Extended Essay (EE). Through the DP core students reflect on the meaning of knowledge and how it is obtained and understood, undertake a community service project of their design, learn a new skill and complete a high-level research essay on a topic of their choice to prepare them for university research and writing. Through their six subjects, students will develop a wide breadth of knowledge while mastering the six essential approaches to learning that will ensure they are fully prepared for their post-secondary educational plans.

Benefits for Students: 

The Diploma Program provides the following benefits for students: 

          Students will study at least two different languages giving them the opportunity to graduate with an IB Bilingual Diploma

          Students have the opportunity to excel in traditional academic subjects and gain an excellent breadth and depth of knowledge

          The program focuses on all aspects of the students and allows them the develop physically, intellectually, socially, emotionally and 

          The program fosters international-mindedness preparing students to succeed and excel all over the world

          Students will develop strategies for coping with demanding workloads and learn to manage their time to meet all expectations placed on them

          Students who complete the Diploma Program will be better prepared for learning in higher education

        72% of students taking the DP in Chain attend one of the world’s top 500 universities (2013) 

Why choose CISK?

CISK is an English speaking, international school in Kunshan. CISK teachers are highly qualified international staff with a range of strengths, capabilities and skillsets. Our school's focus is on academic excellence. The CISK campus, as well as our commitment to and passion for student learning, set us apart from other schools in the area. We boast a warm, caring community, where students feel welcomed and respected. CISK students are challenged, academically, and physically each and every day and encouraged to be the best they can be. Parent involvement in their child's academic career is very important and they are encouraged to become true partners with CISK in their child’s educational journey.

Does CISK accept students in the middle of the year?

CISK recognizes that families may move to Kunshan in the middle of the school year and is able to accommodate new students. We will make every effort to help late-entry students get adjusted to our school and the new surroundings, as quickly as possible.

What are the school hours?

Students attend school from 9.00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. from Monday to Friday. Students are expected to attend teacher supervised activities from 3:30 to 4:30 from Monday to Thursday.

How many students are in one class?

Our admission policies allow for an average of 20 students in each classroom. Nursery, Junior Kindergarten and Senior Kindergarten have two teachers in each classroom, one qualified native English speaking professional and one certified bilingual English assistant.

Are school meals provided?

School meals are provided on campus by our fully trained kitchen staff. We offer a hot, 3 course meal in our cafeteria each school day. Lunch takes place in our dining hall with staff and students eating together. If your child elects to bring food from home, a heating station is provided. Should your child have a food allergy, please contact the school and a special menu can be arranged. Morning and afternoon snacks are provided for Nursery, Junior Kindergarten and Senior Kindergarten. The cost for the snacks is included in the tuition fees for these grades.

How much homework should my child expect?

Homework varies by grade level:

 Grade 1 - 3:       15 - 30 minutes

 Grade 4 - 6:      40 – 60 minutes

 Grade 7 - 8:      45 minutes to 90 minutes

 Grade 9 :          90 minutes

While homework is not formally assigned or assessed at the Nursery and Kindergarten levels, at-home activities are encouraged and are an important extension of the classroom program.

Generally, students are expected to read, in any language, nightly. The oral practice of English words, numbers and sentences is also recommended.

To ensure that homework is meaningful and provides students with the opportunity to reinforce and extend in-school experiences, please refer to the Parent/Student Handbook for homework tips.

What is the language of instruction?

English is CISK's language of instruction. Mandarin is also taught from Grade 4. Our Chinese language program is delivered by experienced and fully qualified Chinese teachers, the majority of whom are graduates from a Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language program.

Where are the CISK teachers from?

CISK teachers demonstrate strong people skills, have a passion for teaching and learning and have the enthusiasm to guide, encourage, and support students. CISK teachers are highly qualified, come predominantly from North America, and hold a minimum of a university bachelor's degree or above. CISK teachers are in good standing with the Ontario College of Teachers, the licensing body of the teaching profession. All CISK teachers have regular opportunities for professional development and are supported with curricular materials from our Ontario affiliated school, St. John's-Kilmarnock.

To learn more about our faculty, refer to our Teacher Academic profiles. For employment opportunities with CISK, please refer to our Careers section.

Does CISK provide transportation for students?

CISK offers bus transportation for students to and from school upon parental request. Details about bus transportation can be obtained from our Admissions office.

Where will students go after graduation?

Students will earn a CISK Diploma which is recognized by Jiangsu Province. If students complete the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program, once CISK is accredited, students will have the qualifications to apply to schools worldwide with opportunities to be admitted to top universities in North America, UK, Europe and Asia.

What is the IB (International Baccalaureate) program?

The IB program began in the mid1960s and is designed to help students aged 3 to 19 develop the intellectual, personal, emotional and social skills to live, learn and work in a rapidly globalizing world. Based on research, the IB program focuses on the “whole child” and emphasizes individual development of learning skills and initiative. Small group projects focus students to develop problem learning skills, communication skills, creativity and teamwork.