School Overview School Overview School Overview School Overview

School Overview 2015-2016

General Information

The International School of Stavanger (ISS) is a private, English-language school and welcoming community for students in pre-school – grade 12 (age 3-18). With an impressive record of academic success, ISS provides an internationally-accredited education and a university preparatory curriculum primarily for students of the expatriate community in Stavanger, Norway. Founded in 1966, ISS is a non-profit, administered by a director and governed by a board of trustees. Fifty years later, ISS is now one of the largest international schools in Scandinavia with four sections to support students in their stages of growth and learning:

  • Early Childhood – ISS’ early childhood section – including pre-school for threeand four year olds, kindergarten (the first compulsory academic year) and grade 1 – helps children develop their potential through planned activities that stimulate, guide and encourage a love of learning.
  • Primary School – The primary school programme for grades 2-5 continues to focus on the growth of the whole child and fosters positive goals and beliefs while actively engaging them in the learning process.
  • Middle School – The middle school provides students aging from 11 to 13/14 (grades 6-8) with a vibrant, developmentally-appropriate, responsive and academically-enriching programme.
  • High School – Covering grades 9-12, the high school empowers students to be life-long learners and prepares them to be caring, engaged global citizens. Students are offered external examination courses with IGCSE through the University of Cambridge and the International Baccalaureate Diploma.

ISS has English as an Additional Language (EAL), speech and learning support programmes. All students can participate in extra-curricular, arts, athletic, service and travel opportunities.

Our Philosophy

Inspire a community of responsible, globally-engaged, empowered learners.

ISS provides an internationally-accredited, engaging and challenging English-language education in a supportive, multi-cultural environment where students have the opportunity to fulfill their potential.


  • Learning
  • Well-being
  • Community
Learn more about the ISS philosophy, values and objectives.

Student Body and Diversity

More than 630 students attend ISS (pre-school – grade 12). Many students have lived in more than one country, are linguistically and culturally diverse and value international and intercultural understanding.

As of August 2015, ISS’ student population represents 48 countries (list below). Approximately 15% hold Norwegian citizenship, 22% U.S. citizenship and 11% U.K. citizenship (includes dual citizens). The multicultural make-up of our student body enhances learning, strengthens our open-mindedness and encourages respect.

  • Algeria
  • Argentina
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Azerbaijan
  • Bangladesh
  • Belgium
  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • China
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Egypt
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Ghana
  • Iceland
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Iran
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Latvia
  • Libya
  • Malaysia
  • Mexico
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Nigeria
  • Norway
  • Pakistan
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Serbia
  • Singapore
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Tunisia
  • Turkey
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Venezuela
  • Vietnam


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There are 103 faculty members (26 men, 77 women) from around the world, including Australia, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Serbia, Sri Lanka, Trinidad and Tobago, United Kingdom, United States and Uruguay. The teachers, specifically, hold 78 bachelor’s degrees, 47 master’s degrees and 5 doctorates (as of August 2015).


ISS is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) in the United States and the Council of International Schools (CIS) based in Europe. Additionally, the school is authorized to offer the International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) and International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme. With a strong academic record, ISS has successfully delivered IBDP for 20 years and GCSE/IGCSE for 30 years. The school has authorized status from the Kingdom of Norway via the Education Act.


ISS provides an internationally-accredited university preparatory curriculum:

  • Early Childhood, Primary and Middle School: Cross-cultural curriculum with features from European and North American academic systems
  • High School: International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) for grades 9-10 and International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) for grades 11-12

The IB Diploma is considered an international passport to higher education, often playing a positive and important role in university admissions decisions given its rigour and emphasis on critical thinking, research skills and service.

The school calendar follows a semester system with grades reported quarterly.


English as an Additional Language (EAL) classes help students learn English and ensure non-native speakers progress in class. French, German, Norwegian and Spanish are taught in the middle and/or high school; Norwegian is also taught throughout the primary school.

Based on interest, ISS offers after-school first language programs for Dutch, French, German, Italian and Mandarin speakers. Conversational language groups (e.g., Spanish, Russian) have also run during the year.

Location and Facilities

The International School of Stavanger is situated on a 6-hectare campus in Stavanger, located in southwest Norway. Families have easy access to both city and country living. ISS offers school bus transportation throughout the area.

With strong hopes of ensuring that every member of the family settles into their new school and home city, ISS has resources to help parents and children transition upon their arrival.

The school is well-equipped with classrooms; 9 science lab/classrooms; 370- seat theatre; a dance and drama studio; 2 libraries, language and technology labs; and a sports complex with 4 indoor gyms, 400-meter track, rugby, football/soccer, softball and baseball fields as well as fitness facilities. The cafeteria provides healthy hot and cold menu selections. With several technology labs and a 1-to-1 iPad programme in the middle and high school, teaching and student learning is enhanced through technology.

Sports and Activities

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ISS’ extra-curricular programme emphasizes participation and inclusivity, regardless of ability and experience. There are various opportunities to get involved in athletics/sports, clubs, groups and more.

The athletics department offers football/soccer, girls’ volleyball, boys’ rugby, basketball, swimming, cross-country and track and field.

A sampling of the other activities include: musicals/plays, Model United Nations, outdoor education, yearbook, student council/government, charity groups, music ensembles and clubs for photography, dance, app development, cycling, Lego robotics, taekwondo, baseball and rock climbing.

Throughout the year, students enjoy field trips in and outside of Norway related to course subjects, service learning, outdoor education, language immersion, sports tournaments and music and theatre festivals.

Academic Achievements

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Students can graduate with an ISS High School Diploma and an International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma. In May 2015, 63 students out of a graduating class of 64 students (98 percent) undertook the full IB Diploma. ISS’ mean IB Diploma score of 34 points ranks above the world average of 29.7, and six students achieved an impressive 40 points or higher out of the maximum of 45.

Additionally, ISS annually excels in the Norwegian Unge Forskere competition. For 2012-2015, ISS produced more finalists than any other school in Norway, winning prizes and trips to international competitions and science seminars.

Graduation Requirements

ISS HS Diploma
Twenty two credits in English, Mathematics, Social Studies, Science, Physical Education/Health, Fine, Performing or Technical Arts and Electives are required to graduate with the ISS high school diploma, which provides a route to academic and vocational college options. Within this high school diploma structure, the majority of students also follow the full IB Diploma, selecting and studying individual IB subjects as part of the regular ISS HS diploma.

International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma
Candidates in grades 11 and 12 must fulfill selected higher and standard level (HL, SL) courses, pass the external exams with a 24+ score and complete the Theory of Knowledge course, an extended essay and Creativity, Action and Service (CAS) components.

IB courses include Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics, English Literature, English Language and Literature, Norwegian Language and Literature, Norwegian, French, German, Spanish, School-supported Self-taught Language, Economics, Geography, History, Psychology, Visual Arts and Design Technology. Additionally, Business and Management, Information Technology and Film can be offered as online IB courses.

University/College Acceptances

ISS’ guidance and university counselling team helps students successfully prepare for admission to universities around the world.

Students from recent graduating classes were accepted by leading institutions in Australia, Canada, France, Hungary, Italy, Ireland, Spain, the Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand, Poland, the UAE, U.S. and U.K., including:

Canada: McGill University, University British Columbia
Netherlands: Delft University of Technology, University of Utrecht
Norway: Norwegian University of Science and Technology
United Kingdom: Imperial College London, King’s College London, University of Cambridge, University College London, University of Edinburgh, University of Manchester
United States: New York University, Texas A&M and University of Virginia


  • Director: Gareth L Jones B.Ed Hons, MBA

  • High School Principal: Dr. Liam Browne

  • Middle School Principal: Ms. Carol Wallace
  • Early Childhood and Primary School Principal: Ms. Jill Raven

  • Director of Technology: Mr. David Beaty 
  • High School Counsellor: Ms. Monchaya Jetabut
  • Examinations and IB Coordinator: Ms. Lynn Park

  • Middle School Counsellor: Mr. Matt Armstrong
  • Early Childhood and Primary School Counsellor: Dr. Jack Raven

Admissions Inquiries

Ms. Sarah Osborne - Admissions Officer
+47 51 55 43 61

Download 2015-16 School Overview.