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Grades 5-12

In the Upper School, our students acquire mastery of 12 academic subjects — in the fields of natural sciences, mathematics, foreign languages, social sciences and the arts — while developing important leadership skills and critical judgment. In other words, our Upper School prepares them not just to excel in college and their professional careers, but to become engaged citizens of the world.

At the GISW, students think in German and live German culture every day. Most classes are held in German, although some are taught bilingually in German and English on a rotating basis. In sixth grade, students may choose to study French or Spanish as a third language. Latin is offered beginning in eighth grade, and a fourth modern language in tenth. By the time they graduate, many of our students are fluent in three or four languages.

Classes in biology, chemistry, and physics are taught every year from seventh through 12th grade in our modern, fully-equipped science building. Students discover scientific principles primarily through hands-on experimentation.

College Preparation
We offer numerous Advanced Placement  (AP) courses. However, we do not distinguish between basic and advanced classes  —  all classes are taught at an advanced level. Students graduate with two qualifications, the globally recognized German International Abitur (DIA) and a high-school diploma from the state of Maryland.

Graduates of the GISW go on to attend some of the most competitive colleges and universities around the world. In recent years, these have included Ivy League institutions, such as Harvard University and Yale University, as well as renowned universities in European cities such as Berlin, London, Munich, Paris, Vienna, and Zurich.

If you have any questions, please contact us by email.


A. Linnenbrink
Coordinator for Grades 5-9

A. Schauss
Coordinator for Grades 10-12


The German International School Washington D.C. stays in touch with its alumni around the globe and is very proud of their achievements.

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Founded in 1969 and run solely by parent volunteers, this group raises funds to benefit GISW. Learn more about the Friends