The Island School believes that young people, given the right tools, can do just about anything--including change the world. The tools we offer will help you dive deep into the ocean and dig even deeper into yourself in order discover new sources of your own strength, the strength to ask difficult questions, to live well with less, and to believe that you can become a force for positive change in the world. At The Island School, we will ask you to turn off your cell phones and turn on to your surroundings- rich laboratories of learning that include the Caribbean Ocean, Bahamian culture, and our own vibrant community of scientists, faculty and students. By pushing the usual boundaries of classroom education, we create an environment in which critical thinking skills are just a normal part of daily life.
A semester at The Island School involves hard work, community living, and new challenges. For a taste of what life is like during a semester on Eleuthera, take a look at our student blogs and alumni stories in the 'Stories' section in the website footer. When you are ready to begin your own Island School adventure, the first step is to start an application. Through the process of writing your essays, we hope that you might already begin to imagine a new way of learning and even discover something wonderful about yourself.
The Admission Team will be your first point of contact. Please let us help you with your questions!
Director of Admissions
The Island School embraces diversity in its many forms. We believe firmly that education happens when we are surrounded by those with different backgrounds and experiences from ourselves. We also know that our community is immeasurably enriched by the different cultures and mindsets that our students bring from their diverse homes, schools, neighborhoods, and nations. While our ideal candidates come from a variety of backgrounds, they all share an intense curiosity about the future of the world around them and are motivated to become leaders effecting change. Acceptance criteria include personal essays, academic records, recommendations, and, most importantly, a clear indication of the student’s enthusiasm and desire to explore a new world and discover new ways of learning. Students come from a variety of schools – public and private, boarding and day.
Interested students may learn about our programs from our website and are also encouraged to attend an admission event whenever possible. Interviews are recommended, but not required. To schedule a video interview, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuition for Fall 2017 and Spring 2018 semesters is $29,950 and tuition for Summer Term 2017 and Expeditionary Summer Term 2017 is $9,130. Tuition covers the cost of room and board. We ask that the family obligation is paid in full before a student arrives on Eleuthera.
Our financial aid is tuition-based only. Additional and incidental costs will be borne by the family. Additional expenses include travel, school clothing, gear, any outside medical treatment, and personal spending money, which typically range from $1,000-$1,500. In extreme hardship, The Island School will help contribute to some of these incidental costs, such as uniform or gear.
If you would like to discuss options on how past students and families have worked through these additional expenses, please email email@example.com.
We recognize that an elective program like The Island School can be difficult for many families to afford. The Island School and our partner schools are committed to make The Island School a reality for deserving students. We firmly believe that our program is invaluable in shaping future leaders and therefore must be accessible to all.
Our financial aid is need-blind, meaning acceptance to The Island School program is not determined by a family’s need for financial aid. We use a service called FAST, a financial aid service that helps us assess need in a fair and unbiased manner, to generate awards. The Island School and financial aid will be applied for simultaneously. FAST applications are due on March 1st. Awards will therefore be announced with the student's acceptance to The Island School at the end of March.
If you are currently receiving financial aid at your sending school, please discuss the possibility of transferring your aid towards the tuition costs at The Island School with your Director of Financial Aid.
The Bahamas Environmental Steward Scholars (BESS) program is a unique opportunity for graduating students in The Bahamas ages 15-18 who have a keen interest in the environment and want to learn more as they transition from high school to university studies. Successful applicants will participate in a 14-week academic semester at The Island School in South Eleuthera and a four-month paid internship at an environmental conservation-related organization. Upon completion of high school, students can use BESS as a gap year experience before pursuing further studies. The BESS Program is administered in collaboration with 'BREEF,' Bahamas Reef Environmental Education Foundation.
As part of the BESS program you will:
Many schools honor our credits for everything and factor our grades into the GPA’s. Other schools accept some credits and do not include our grades in GPA’s (but attach The Island School transcripts as a supplement). Most frequently there is an issue with our math credit and lack of foreign language. Almost all schools accept our science, literature, history, and arts credits as well as the community service hours students earn with us. Many schools offer two science credits for our term. Strategies that schools use to navigate the credit transfer challenges include:
Throughout the school year, our admissions team will be traveling across the country, hosting informational receptions and visiting schools. Please check out the links below to see if we will be coming to a place near you!
College of Charleston
College of The Bahamas
George Washington University
Hobart and William Smith Colleges
Johns Hopkins University
Lewis and Clark College
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Michigan State University
New York University
Southern Methodist University
St. Andrews University-Scotland
St. Lawrence University
University of California - Berkeley
University of California-Santa Cruz
University of Colorado - Boulder
University of Denver
University of Georgia
University of Miami
University of Michigan
University of New Hampshire
University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill
University of Pennsylvania
University of Richmond
University of Southern California
University of Vermont
University of Virginia
University of Wisconsin
Wake Forest University
A pivotal experience, thoughtfully introducing me to the idea of independence, in its many forms.
- Nick Del Vecchio F'02
IS remains as the singular defining adventure of my life; it has made me me.
- Griffin Hunt F'11
It's an attitude and an appreciation that is with you in all life's endeavors.
- Stuart Naeny F'04
One of my favorite things about Island School is that I continue to find meaning and understanding about myself, others, and the natural world by reflecting on experiences I had during my semester nearly three years ago.
- Katie Johnson S'11
Island School - where you learn to turn 'I can't' into 'I did'.
- Adriana Misoul S'06
A place promoting positive change to its students, who in turn positively change our world.
- Noelle Cooper F'04
It challenges everything you thought you knew about community and the earth - for the better.
- Stephanie Chaston F'05
Island School is where the improbable becomes possible and the extraordinary becomes ordinary.
- Robbie Balloch S'12
Leaving technology behind, appreciating a new community, learning with my hands and feet.
- Anika Ayyar F'11
A new perspective of what community means and a redirection of life's real priorities.
- Jennifer Boone Purviance S'03
We believe that the best people to hear from about our program are those who have lived it for themselves! Please enjoy learning from some of our 2015 - 2016 students, who they are, where they come from, and what they have to say about their experience at The Island School. Check out the link below for more information about our ambassadors and how to contact a student!