Preschool through Grade 12

Operations and Campus Experience

  • In the Elementary School division, students will be grouped into grade size groups, or cohorts, that will attend classes and school activities together, with minimal interaction indoors with other cohorts to the extent possible. Cohorts may be mixed outdoors as needed.  In the Middle School and in the Upper School,  each School/Division will be considered its own cohort.
  • During garderie, students will stay in their cohorts to the extent possible, but may be mixed. 
  • Teachers and assistants will all be fully vaccinated and will not be assigned to specific cohorts.
  • Large gatherings in person such as assemblies will be avoided and conducted virtually to the extent possible.
  • Lunch will be held in classrooms or outside when possible. 
  • Sharing of educational materials will be allowed, with the exception of musical instruments that require air blowing.

  • Water fountains with hand-push buttons will be shut down and drinking directly from the water fountains will no longer be possible. Only fountains with bottle fillers will be operational. Additional fountains with bottle fillers will be installed over the summer and October break. Students are asked to bring a reusable bottle with their name clearly labeled on it.

↑ Back to Top

How will students eat lunch? Will the cafeteria be open?

  • The cafeteria will not be open. Students will have lunch in their classroom or outside when possible, while maintaining 6’ of distancing.
  • Hot Lunch service will deliver individually-packaged lunches to students in their classrooms. Meals will be delivered in insulated carriers to the school entrances and brought inside by ISB personnel. There will be a limited number of emergency hot lunches at a cost of $15 each, for students who arrive without a meal. Families will be able to order meals online, directly through our caterer “Season to Taste,” starting later in August. The School plans to implement a robust composting program during the school year 2021-22.
  • Students should bring labelled personal water bottles to school and refill them at contactless water-bottle-refilling stations.

↑ Back to Top

Will Garderie or Study Hall be open?

  • Yes. The Garderie and Study Hall will be open.
  • To the extent possible, students will stay in their cohort but it may not be possible for all instances.
  • Parents picking up their children will ring the bell, announce the name of the student they are picking up, and wait outside. Elementary School students will be escorted to the door by the school personnel.
  • We expect vacation week camps to take place this year; details to follow in Weekly Updates.
  • Health & Safety policies will apply during garderie, study hall or camps.
  • During garderie, students will stay in their cohorts to the extent possible, but may be mixed.
  • Contact Catherine Bastien for Elementary and Jordan Spencer or Nicole Hanover for Middle School.

↑ Back to Top

Will after-school activities be available?

After-school activities such as sports and clubs will be available. A preview of Fall 2021 clubs for Preschool & Kindergarten and Lower School is currently listed on the Parent Portal. Please note these clubs are subject to change. Further information will be provided in the Weekly Update. Questions? Contact Catherine Bastien.

↑ Back to Top

Will there be field trips?

Subject to community rate of transmission, local field trips will be organized. Information on these will be communicated by homeroom teachers or in the Weekly Update. They will initially be limited to surrounding areas and recreational facilities where significant interaction with the public is not expected. No public transportation will be used. All requirements will apply during these field trips and cohorts will be maintained to the extent possible during all transportation and travel.

The School may consider organizing overnight field trips in the spring 2022 subject to health conditions, vaccination coverage and travel policies.

↑ Back to Top

How will the library work?

Families will be able to request books from the libraries and they will be delivered to their children. Information will be forthcoming in future Weekly Updates.

↑ Back to Top

How will drop-off and dismissal work?

  • Drop off times are organized with different building entrances assigned by grade. School personnel will be on hand to direct students straight into their classrooms. At each entrance, students will be required to sanitize hands. Parents are asked not to enter the school nor to gather in front of the school.
  • Car drop-off will follow the carpool lanes. Students arriving by school buses will disembark in a staggered manner, row by row.

  • Grades 1 to 5 will be dropped off at the gate at the bottom of the main playground (next to the Church). In case of inclement weather, they will be dropped off at the Gym door for Grades 2 to 5 and Grade 1 will be dropped off at the main door of Building 4.
  • Dismissal may be staggered and conducted through assigned exit doors/pick-up areas.
  • To pick up Elementary School students, parents should park and wait in the designated pick-up zone by grade (see map below) for their child. If it is raining, please come to the pick-up door by grade (see Rain Map). Middle and Upper School students will meet their parents outside.

    ◦    Maternelle and Grade 1 - Building 4
    ◦    Grade 2 and 3- Door D Building 2
    ◦    Grade 4 and 5 - Door B Building 2
    ◦   Specific door information will be provided by the Elementary School division.

  • Parking in the Gym lot is permitted for afternoon pick-up. Parking consideration (parking without resident permit) is in effect from 7:30 to 9:00 AM and from 2:45 to 4:00 PM within the area framed by Massachusetts Avenue, Alewife Brook Parkway (Route 16), Churchill Avenue and Matignon Road.
  • For the safety of all, the playgrounds and the front lawn of the school will not be available after pick-up. We ask parents not to enter the buildings except on Fridays for Elementary School dismissal (we ask parents to restrict their visit to the classroom of their children and wear a mask, regardless of their vaccination status).
  • For the safety of all, the playgrounds and the front lawn of the school will not be available after pick-up. We ask parents not to enter the buildings.
  • Please respect our friendly neighbor The Cambridge Matignon School and do not park on their grounds. Similarly we kindly ask that ISB families do not use the lawn in front of The Cambridge Matignon School.
  • In case of a tardy drop-off or early pick-up, parents should ring the bell, and school personnel will escort the student to or from their room. Secondary school students will walk to their classroom on their own.


Drop-Off Entrances by Grade Level

Map of locations for morning drop off around the ISB campus


Elementary Parent Pick-Up Zones

Please wait in the designated area by Grade for your Elementary students. 

Map of pickup locations for elementary students across the ISB campus

How will the ISB bus service operate?

  • Transportation service will be offered Monday through Friday, starting Wednesday, September 1st, 2021 to Wednesday June 15, 2022, following the school calendar. There will be two routes:

        ◦    Mattapan-South End-Back Bay-Charlestown-Davis Square-ISB
        ◦    Lexington-Belmont-Arlington-ISB
  • Bus service will be offered on a first-come first-served basis, with priority given to returning students. Please see details on routes, schedules, and feesTo sign up or if you have questions, please contact Kate Allen.
  • All staff and students on the bus, regardless of age, will be required to wear masks at all times. Windows will be kept open at all times, except in extreme weather. Hand sanitizer will be available at the entrance of the bus and food and drinks will not be permitted.
  • The daily screening on the Magnus Health App will have to be completed before 6:30 AM in order for the student to be allowed to board the bus. Should a student develop COVID-19 symptoms during the school day, they will need to be picked up by a parent or guardian, as they will not be permitted to board the bus.
  • Cambridge Public Schools will offer busing starting September 9, 2021 to Cambridge residents with students age 4 through Grade 8. To learn more or sign up, please contact Kate Allen.

↑ Back to Top

Can we carpool?

  • We recommend families car-pool with members of their own household or individuals who are fully vaccinated. Students who are not fully vaccinated are at risk while riding in a car. If needed, masks should be worn inside the car and windows left open.
  • You can find families living in your neighborhood by searching the Family Directory on the Parent Portal.

↑ Back to Top

Who will be allowed to enter the school buildings?

  • Even though parent participation in the school life is very important, this year, for safety reasons, parents will usually not be permitted in the school buildings as extensively as in the past.
  • There will be few events hosted at school.
  • Visitors will be limited to essential persons whose engagement is mission-critical. Any contractors will be scheduled outside of school hours to the extent possible.
  • Anyone who is allowed to enter the school will have to wear a mask, sanitize hands, and undergo the same health screening required for students each day, regardless of their vaccination status. 

↑ Back to Top

Will community events (back to school night, PTO, community meetings, etc) be back in person?

Back To School presentations will take place virtually and invitations will be sent closer to the date. Decisions on whether other events will be held in person or virtually will be made on a case-by-case basis and depending on the school and local community health situation. 

↑ Back to Top