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Whether you are in Shanghai or on your way, we can answer your questions and put your mind at ease! Ask Us!

FAQ

If you haven't found all the answers you hope for elsewhere on our site, we have curated answers to the questions we hear most often.

When should I apply?

You are welcome to submit an application at any time during the year; we do not have an application deadline. Due to classroom capacity constraints, we encourage you to apply as soon as you feel comfortable with your school decision. When classroom capacity has been reached, accepted students will join the wait pool for that particular grade.

Where are your teachers from?

The majority of our 155 teaching faculty are from the United States. In addition, many teachers are from Canada, Australia and China. All faculty members are certified teachers and 81% hold master’s degrees or higher. Nearly 90% of our teachers have over ten years teaching experience. We also enjoy a low annual teacher turnover rate.

Where are Concordia's students from?

North Americans comprise 58.8% of Concordia’s student body, while a total of 30 passports are represented across the entire student body. The top five passports represented are the United States (53.7%), Korea (8.6%), PRC-Hong Kong (11.5%), Canada (5.1%) and PRC–Taiwan (4%).

When does the school year begin and end?

The school year starts in August and ends in June. For 2017-18 school the first day of school was August 16, 2017 and the last day of school is June 13, 2018. Concordia’s calendar meets U.S. and European requirements and also accommodates major Chinese and U.S. holidays.

What are Concordia's school hours?

School begins at 8 a.m. and ends at 3:20 p.m. for all Elementary and Middle School grade levels. High School starts at 8:30 a.m. and ends at 3:20 p.m.

Does Concordia offer English as an Additional Language?

Our core curriculum is offered in the English language. If we are concerned whether an applicant’s level of English will allow them to succeed without language support, we will ask the student to take an English assessment as part of the application process and make a determination afterward.

Does Concordia offer specialized learning support?

Concordia has limited services for currently enrolled students with special learning needs or specific learning disabilities. We ask families whose children have specialized schooling requirements to provide documentation of these needs and the reasons for these requirements. Admission is contingent upon a match between the student’s needs and level of service that we can provide to ensure the student’s success.

Will my child need to take an entrance exam?

Students applying for Grades 6 to 12 are requested to submit either PSAT, SAT, ACT or SSAT test results, as part of the application process. The SSAT website (www. ssat.org) provides information about the test. Other standardlized tests, (like MAP), will be considered for an initial review. Additionally, we may have admission assessments for students whose mastery of English may affect their success.

How do you prepare high school students for university entrance?

Our High School counselors begin working with students on the university selection and entrance process within weeks of starting high school. The counselors hold grade level meetings for all high school parents and students to offer guidance regarding course selection and university preparation. The focus intensifies for Grade 11 and Grade 12 students: In the spring of Grade 11, students and parents meet with their assigned counselor for individual discussion and guidance. In the fall of Grade 12, counselors guide students through the university application process. We offer a full range of Advanced Placement (AP) courses (please see our High School Profile for a comprehensive list). As an approved SAT, ACT, and AP testing site, we administer the PSAT, SAT I, SAT II, ACT, and AP exams on campus. In addition, we coordinate on-campus recruiting visits from colleges and universities in search of highly qualified students.

Do you administer other standardized achievement tests?

From Grade 3 to Grade 8 we administer the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP), a test developed by Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA). MAP tests help determine each child’s instructional level and measure growth over the course of the school year. The MAP test is given in three areas: math, reading, and language. It is administered twice a year.

Where do Concordia graduates attend college or university?

Concordia graduates attend universities all over the world. Whatever a student’s aspirations, they can get there from Concordia. For a comprehensive list of matriculations for the past three years, please see our Annual Report.

Please describe the school's Christian foundation.

Concordia welcomes students and families from all faith traditions. Christianity is an integral part of our identity and students are exposed to the Bible and the Christian faith through classes, assemblies and a positive moral environment. The curriculum includes study of other world religions and students are encouraged to explore and articulate their own personal beliefs.

What foreign languages are offered?

Mandarin is compulsory and taught daily from Preschool through Grade 6. Students in Grade 7 to Grade 12 choose from Spanish, Latin or Mandarin. All language programs include levels for students of differing language abilities. Mandarin has two tracks- Mandarin as a Foreign Language and Heritage Mandarin. Students will take a placement test to determine their appropriate level.

What is the technology program at Concordia?

Apple computers (desktops, laptops and/or iPads) are present in every classroom, beginning in Preschool. The computer technology and wireless environment on campus is supported by our on-site Tech Hub Apple service center. Kindergarten, Grade 1 and Grade 2 classrooms have a ratio of one desktop computer for every two students. Grade 3 and Grade 4 classrooms have laptops for students to use during the school day. Students in Grade 5 to Grade 12 participate in a one-to-one personal laptop program and purchase of the required personal laptop is an additional expense beyond tuition. The computer technology does not replace paper and pencil; rather it is used to enrich and enhance the learning process. Students are expected to use the computer as an age-appropriate learning tool for research, written work, graphics and presentations.

Does Concordia have co-curricular activities?

A wide variety of activities are available after school— including sports, the fine arts and games. These are available to our students from Grade 1 through High School. The choices change seasonally. School fees cover activities unless otherwise stated. Transportation is provided following most co-curricular activities for students who have purchased school bus transportation. There are additional sport and community organizations that offer paid lessons/activities for students beginning in preschool, that are hosted on campus.

Does Concordia provide bus transportation?

Optional bus transportation is available for students in most areas of Pudong and Puxi before and after school. Bus transportation is also available to regular bus riders following most of the co-curricular activities and athletics programs. The bus fee is not included in the tuition.

Do you have school uniforms?

All students in Kindergarten through Grade 12 wear a uniform. This consists of a Concordia polo shirt (white or navy blue) and navy or khaki bottoms (depending on grade level). Elementary students (Kindergarten through Grade 4) wear navy blue bottoms; students in Grade 5 to Grade 12 wear either navy blue or khaki bottoms. Students in Grade 5 to Grade 12 also need a physical education uniform. All uniform items are purchased through the school. A detailed uniform policy is available on our website. Preschool students do not wear the school uniform and should come dressed for comfort, ease of movement and self-sufficiency for hygiene and toileting.

What kind of footwear should my child wear?

Shoes, sneakers and sandals are students’ choice; only rubber flip-flops, crocs or thongs are not allowed. Elementary students must wear socks and their sandals must include a strap that wraps behind the heel. Sport shoes with non-marking soles are required for physical education.

Do you have a hot lunch program?

Students can choose to purchase a school lunch from our school vendor, Chartwells, or bring their own lunch (microwave ovens are available for heating). The school lunch menu is designed to provide a balanced meal with western and Asian choices, as well as a sandwich option, for 25 RMB to 35 RMB (about US$4 to US$5.50) per day. Students are not permitted to leave campus for lunch.

To what extent are parents involved with the school?

Concordia is committed to creating a foundation for the entire family’s success and fostering a strong partnership between school and home. Our Parent Support Organization (PSO) offers many ways to strengthen that partnership. The PSO hosts monthly on-campus parent meetings, and parents are welcome to become involved in a variety of classroom and school activities. Regular PSO and parent-driven activities include book fairs, classroom parties, teacher appreciation events, Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops, the Phoenix Shop “spirit store,” and fundraising.


How does the school community help my child in the transition to Concordia?

We understand the expatriate experience and living outside one’s home country. At Concordia, our teachers, counselors, administrators and families work to ensure new students and families adjust quickly to living in Shanghai. In the Elementary School, counselors assist students that are transitioning in and out of Concordia. From Grade 5 to Grade 12, the Student Ambassador program plays a key role in welcoming new students and helping them feel at home. We also have access to other community resources that offer programs, activities and extra curricular classes to help meet the needs of the expatriate family. When a family prepares to leave, the school staff facilitates repatriation and university admissions through counseling programs.

What supplies does my child need to bring to school?

  • Elementary School (Preschool-Grade 4): Most school supplies are provided and textbooks are included in tuition. Students should bring a healthy snack for morning break time, a reusable water bottle, and a backpack.

Preschool students will need a small sleeping bag and pillow for rest time.

  • Middle School (Grades 5-8): Most school supplies are provided and textbooks are included in tuition. Students should bring a healthy snack for morning break time, a reusable water bottle and a backpack.

Students who wish to play an instrument in the orchestra or band should bring their instrument, as Concordia does not rent instruments. Our instructors can also provide information regarding purchasing an instrument in Shanghai.

Students in Grade 5 to Grade 8 will need personal laptop computers. All models of Apple laptop (Pro, Air, Pro Retina) are acceptable if the hard drive/flash drive is 256GB or greater (500GB recommended). Parents may purchase the laptop directly from Apple or from any Apple Authorized Reseller, including Solution Keys (visit http://store.solutionkeys.com/ laptop/apple.html ) which is the company that Concordia contracts to staff the Tech Hub Apple Service Center.

  • High School (Grades 9-12): High School students should bring a reusable water bottle and a backpack.

High school textbooks are included in tuition but high school students supply their own notebooks and writing implements. Large spiral notebooks with and without pockets, three ring binders, and 3-hole punched loose-leaf notebook paper can be difficult to find in Shanghai. Although these are not required, some students prefer these supplies; you may wish to purchase in your home country.

All high school students will also need a personal laptop computer. All models of Apple laptop (Pro, Air, Pro Retina) are acceptable if the hard drive/flash drive is 256GB or greater (500GB recommended). Parents may purchase the laptop directly from Apple or from any Apple Authorized Reseller, including Solution Keys (visit http://store.solutionkeys.com/ laptop/apple.html ) which is the company that Concordia contracts to staff the Tech Hub Apple Service Center.

The required calculator for high school math and science courses is the TI Nspire. The recommended calculator model is the TI Nspire CX CAS. The TI Nspire CX (non-CAS) is also an acceptable model. Students should acquire the calculator prior to their first day of school.

• Students who wish to play an instrument in the orchestra or band should bring their instrument, as Concordia does not rent instruments. Our instructors can provide information regarding purchasing an instrument in Shanghai.

How do you communicate information to school families?

Email is the primary means through which the school communicates with its parent body. Students in Grade 5 to Grade 12 also have individual Aspen accounts, an on-line resource to keep parents informed of their children’s classroom activities as well as their children’s academic performance. Additionally, we have a well-established website, as well as newsletters from the elementary, middle and high schools, a Community Bulletin for the entire school and a Community Chat video series from the Head of School. Many teachers also maintain homework blogs and email classroom newsletters throughout the year.

Concordia Website

  • Concordia’s website is an information resource accessible from around the world
    • Student/Family Handbook-accessed via the Parent page of the website within the division specific information
    • Policies and Procedures as applied to students in a specific division

Aspen

  • Online resource to keep parents informed of their children’s classroom activities and academic performance
  • One login to access the information all of your children
  • Student in Grades 5 through 12 have individual accounts
  • Provides access to the
    • Family Directory
    • Staff Directory-also available on Concordia website
    • Guardianship, Parent Pledge, HS Pre-arranged Absence forms
  • Direct questions about Aspen to aspen@concordiashanghai.org

E News

  • Community Bulletin
    • Primary communication tool to the Concordia Community and includes notices which impact the entire community
    • Sent out every other week on Thursday afternoon
    • Email Marketing@concordiashanghai.org by noon on Wednesday for inclusion in that week’s bulletin
  • Division Newsletter
    • Notices that are division specific
      • ES-every other week
      • MS-every other week
      • HS-every other week
    • Posted on the Parent page of the website with email notices
  • Teacher Newsletter/Homework Blog
    • Notices which impact that specific class
  • Head of School Community Chat video series
    • Opportunities to review topics of strategic or community interest and to share in the Head of School’s vision for an unsurpassed experience at Concordia

Email

  • Used to communicate information that applies to individual or small groups of parents
  • Office of the HOS emails
    • Limit use, information is grouped when possible
    • Translations are made in Mandarin and Korea when parents are being asked to act upon a request that impacts the child’s ability to be in school
    • Time-sensitive/Health/Safety: to help inform/work as a community to address concerns
    • Staff email addresses are available on our website and follow the format of firstname.lastname@concordiashanghai.org
      • Emails received from school should arrive to parents using a consistent subject line format
      • Division or Dept. (i.e. HOS=Head of School, HS=High School, PSO=Parent Support Organization, MarCom=Marketing and Communication)
      • Summary of the content of the email
      • Time requirement (i.e. RSVP, respond by, deadline)
  • WECHAT

    • All-School WeChat Account
      • Share community news and stories every week
    • Divisional WeChat Accounts
      • ES - Classroom Specific Accounts
      • MS - Grade Level Specific Accounts
      • HS - Grade Level Specific Accounts

    Parent Feedback

    • Parent Coffees
      • Used to inform, to instruct, to listen and to respond
      • Personal connection developed with the division leadership team of Administration, Counselors and Directors
      • Summaries of all Parent Coffees are accessible from the Community Bulletin
    • Annual Survey:
      • Parents provide feedback anonymously in a climate survey
    • Three-Way Conferences
      • Parents, with their child, meet their child’s teacher

    Procedures for Handling Questions or Concerns

    Parents are invited to make an appointment with their child’s teacher at any time by contacting the teacher directly. Similarly, meetings can be booked with the counseling staff or the administration in the same manner.