Kiev, Ukraine Report of what it's like to live there - 06/04/18
Personal Experiences from Kiev, Ukraine
1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?
2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?
Grades 3-4, and 7-8.
3. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?
4. Are other schools available to expatriates in this city? Why did you choose this particular school?
Yes, another popular school is KIS - Kyiv International School
We chose PSI because general feedback about the school was positive.
Admissions & Welcome:
1. Are the admissions and placement procedures clearly stated to prospective families, either on the school website or through other means of communication?
Yes, rather clear.
Administration & School Procedures:
1. How is the overall communication between teachers and parents, and the administration and parents? How is communication facilitated?
Communication is a bit ridiculous.
There is a Monday newsletter, and a Friday newsletter, sent out by email, which address different things. And to read the actual newsletter you have to log onto the school website, after logging in like 50 times, so frequently neither is read because first you are on the wrong computer and then you forget about it. And then there are emails from teachers. So it's a bit tricky to keep to track of it all.
The bus notification system is not well coordinated either - I think it would be helpful if they send out an alert or something when they know that the kids will be an hour late from school due to traffic, instead of calling 5 minutes before their arrival.
So basically, in my personal experience - communication sucks.
2. Aside from school fees, are there required expenses such as uniforms, laptops/tablets, musical instruments, or field trips that parents are expected to cover? What are the approximate costs?
Must bring your own computer in middle and high school.
Some of the after-school activities come with additional costs.
Academics & Resources:
1. Is there before and/or after-school daycare available? What are the costs?
School starts early, so no before school daycare.
I'm not sure about afterschool daycare, but there are plenty of activities for kids after school.
2. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?
Yes, their library is pretty good.
3. Describe the physical education resources at the school. Is there a gym? A swimming pool? Are there playing fields or tennis courts available?
There is a gym, a swimming pool, and playing fields.
4. Are Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) courses available in upper grades? If this is an IB school, is the full diploma required of all students?
It's an IB school
5. Are students generally challenged appropriately by the curriculum? Please describe any particular strengths or weaknesses in this area. Do you have any thoughts how the curriculum is applied and implemented at this school?
6. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?
Yes, all available.
7. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?
All main teachers are English native speakers.
8. What extra-curricular activities (including sports) are available at this school? Have your children participated in these activities? What activities do you feel are missing at the school?
Lots of choices are available, from drama and arts to different kinds of sports (track, swimming, soccer, volleyball, etc)
Social & Emotional Well-Being:
1. Do expatriate students socialize with local students at the school? Are both groups successfully integrated into the school culture?
I think yes, generally speaking
2. Are there are any problems with exclusionary behavior, cliques, or bullying at this school? Please describe any problems your children may have experienced in this area.
We had no experience of this sort.
1. What letter grade (ranging from A, excellent, to F, fail) would you assign to this school based on your overall experience? Would you choose it again?
I would not choose this school again. I am not convinced that their curriculum is grade-appropriate and that all of the teachers try their best to help students succeed in their studies, at times it seemed like some of the teachers could not care less.