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Frequently Asked Questions

 
What is your school calendar?
School generally starts beginning or mid-August of each year. School usually ends mid-June of each year. Visit our academic calendar for details.

What are your school hours?
Classes at ISP begin at 7:30 a.m. The school day ends at 11:30 a.m. for PK3 and 2:40 p.m. for the rest of the school. After-school activities generally run from 3:00–4:15 p.m. On Wednesdays, all students leave at noon; we do not serve lunch on early dismissal day.

Does my child have to join ISP on a specific date, such as the beginning of the school year?

The start date for any student is always a case-by-case decision by the Division Principal. In theory, your child can begin school as soon as the admissions process is completed, a place has been offered and corresponding fees have been settled. The Admissions Office will contact you with the specific starting date.  

* IB Diploma students: If the student is not already enrolled in IB courses that are transferable to ISP, it is not possible to begin after the beginning of October.

How is grade level placement determined?
Grade level placement in the PK3, PK4 and Kindergarten is based on the cut-off date (first day of school). In Grade 1-12, placement is determined by both the previous educational experience and age of the student. In some cases, a placement test may be given to accurately place a student.  Please click here to find our school age placement guide.

Does ISP have a wait-pool list?

Yes, when necessary. As with many international schools around the world, demand can fluctuate but is often high. This means that, at the time of application, our classes may be full. In these cases, we place students in a wait-pool list for the grade level involved. Our Admissions Office will be happy to explain to you how we operate our wait-pool list should you have further queries.

What are your class sizes and teacher-to-student ratios?
We are proud to offer small class sizes and teacher-to-student ratios that maximize our faculty’s ability to offer individualized attention.
  • PK Program: 18-19 students to 1 teacher plus one learning assistant
  • Kindergarten: 20-21 students to 1 teacher plus one learning assistant
  • Grade 1:  21-22 students to 1 teacher plus one learning assistant
  • Grades 2–5: 22-23 students to 1 teacher plus a part-time learning assistant 
  • We base our student body population in grades 6 through 12 on the number of students we can accommodate according to building capacity and the amount of teachers available.
 
Do you require ISP students to wear uniforms?
According to Panamanian law, all students in schools must wear uniforms. We offer the ISP uniform for sale at Galapagos, a local clothing chain. We also provide detailed information once your child is admitted to the school. The uniform consists of the following:
  • A polo-style shirt with the ISP school emblem
  • Navy blue shorts, pants, or a plaid skirt depending on age and gender
  • We require physical education (PE) uniforms at all age levels. This is a unisex uniform consisting of navy blue knit shorts and a gray ISP t-shirt. Elementary students wear their PE uniforms to school on the day they have PE class. Middle and high school students change into their PE uniforms before PE class in the locker room facilities provided.
 
What kind of shoes should my child wear?
We require our students to wear black, closed-toe, leather shoes or black sneakers. For safety reasons, we require students to wear rubber-soled shoes during PE class. 

Do you have a lunch program?

The Elementary School has their own cafeteria for grades K – 5. Lunch in the Elementary cafeteria can be included as part of a lunch package. 

Our Middle/High School cafeteria, for grade 6 to 12 sells breakfast, snacks, and hot lunches. It also offers salads, sandwiches, and fresh fruit. Meals in the Cafeteria are á la carte and can be purchased with cash or ISP-Banco General (a well reputed local bank) debit cards which can be filled online

Do you have transportation services?
ISP contacts with four companies for transportation services. ISP students ride in air-conditioned buses outfitted with seat belts, GPS, and a bus monitor (a staff member providing assistance to ensure safety during transport). Students enjoy door-to-door service before school and immediately after school at 3:00 p.m. We also offer an after-school activity bus at 4:30 p.m., also offering door-to-door service.

Can parents use the facilities at ISP?

Yes! Once your child is admitted to ISP, we will issue parents an ISP ID. This ID allows parents to use the pool, track, fitness room and tennis courts as follows:

  • Mondays - Fridays at 5:45 - 7:00 a.m. 
  • Wednesdays from 3:45 - 5:30 p.m. 
  • Saturdays from 8:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. 

We will occasionally have weekend Tennis or Swimming meets which will affect this schedule and such closures will be communicated ahead of time via the Dolphin Dispatch

Where do your students go after high school graduation?
ISP graduates go on to attend some of the most prestigious universities throughout the world. Please click here to view our school profile.