We are happy to share updates and information about developments at IST in our first newsletter. IST is in a successful and exciting “start-up phase,” working out the fundamentals to ensure fluent high-level teaching and operations in our day-to-day practices.
IST has been preparing all summer for the opening of our school.
- The accreditation. IST has obtained official recognition by receiving our schooling license from the Ministry of Education and Research. More detailed news is attached here.
- The school facilities. IST is actively setting up a well-equipped learning environment, including, but not limited to, school furniture, IT tools, and study and reading materials. The majority of things are already in place, but we are working to complete other aspects. Also, we will use various facilities nearby for sports and other activities.
- Teachers. Our primary class teachers have arrived in Estonia from abroad and are working daily to plan and prepare for the first school year. The biographies of the class teachers can be found here.
- Establishing the most urgent policies and procedures. We are aiming to create a full range of procedures to support administrative and pedagogical performance, and also to communicate and collaborate with families.
Practical matters to consider before the start of the school year:
- The first school day. We will start the first school day with an Opening Ceremony on Friday, 1 September at 10:00. The ceremony will mainly include speeches and musical performances. Parents will be informed if any changes are made to our initial program or schedule. After the ceremony, we will continue with a short orientation day to bring together our school community and introduce important details about the school life and agenda.
- Daily schedule. The current daily schedule can be found here. According to our initial planning, the first lesson will start at 08:40, and the lessons will end between 14:00 and 15:00 depending on the timetable of year level (pupils at lower levels may end at 13:00). A more concrete timetable will be provided at the beginning of the school year; however, some parents have requested a later start of the school day (from 09:00 at the earliest). We are open to reconsidering the schedule of our school day if this suggestion is suitable for the majority of our families. Parents are expected to submit their opinions by 20 August to firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know your preferred latest possible start time. After daily lessons are completed, until 17:00, there will be plans for extracurricular activities or/and aftercare.
- Calendar of school year.
The duration of school year: 1 September 2017–11 June 2018
The school periods:
1 Sept.–20 Oct. (period 1)
30 Oct.–22 Dec. (period 2)
8 Jan.–23 Feb. (period 3)
5 March–20 April (period 4)
2 May–11 June (period 5)
The school holidays:
21–29 Oct. (autumn holiday)
23 Dec.–7 Jan. (Christmas holiday)
24 Feb.–4 March (winter holiday)
21 April–1 May (spring holiday)
You can check the national holidays list to see when pupils have additional days off: https://riigipühad.ee/
- Stationery items. We have compiled the IST school supply list for parents, which consists of items to purchase for your child. You may visit any shopping center in Tallinn, ecausut all items can be purchased at once at Büroomaailm.
- Placement of the students. We have decided to conduct placement tests during the first two weeks in September. Our primary class teachers will verify the actual level of every child during regular lesson activities in the classroom. Thereafter, more individual teaching strategies and differentiated instruction will be established considering each pupil’s strengths, abilities, and needs.
- Extracurricular activities. Generally, these activities will take place between 14h00–16h50 every weekday afternoon. Activities will include sports, arts, music, et cetera. This would also be a convenient time to use the school library, attend tutoring, or complete homework. Up to 18h30 at the latest, the school facilities can be used for hobby activities. We will organize extracurricular activities based off of the most preferred interests of the children. The cost will depend on the popularity and nature of the activity and may vary between 20€ and 60€ per month.
- School Kitchen. The school will provide one hot meal every day of the week. We have adopted the principle of no vending machines. The cost of school meals is included in the tuition fee.
- Payments of schooling fees. We have introduced payment options on our website. All details regarding payment schedules have been included in the contract. The first tuition payment is expected to be transferred no later than 30 August.
Shortly before the school year, you will receive updated information via newsletter concerning all relevant issues.
Director of International School of Tallinn