Welcome to ICS Addis

Starting School at the Beginning of the School Year

The first day of school for the 2018-19 school year will be Monday 27 August 2018. Click HERE for the full year calendar.

New families should plan to arrive in Addis the week before, to attend the new family orientations on Thursday and Friday, 23 and 24 August 2018.

Elementary school: new family orientation on Friday 24 August.

Middle and high school: counselor meetings during the week of 20 August (Monday-Wednesday) and new family orientation on Thursday 23 August. Specific meeting appointments will be set in June by the Counseling Office.

Orientations for New Families

  • New family orientations are scheduled for the beginning of the school year (August) and for the beginning of the second semester (January).
  • Families starting school outside of these times will be contacted by the Admissions Office to set up an individual orientation.

Starting School during the School Year

If you are unable to start school at the beginning of the school year, please keep us updated on your expected arrival date. While we do want your child to start school as soon as possible, it is important to give the child sufficient time to recover from travel, to see the campus and to take care of any remaining formalities or assessments, before the child starts school. Please contact the Admissions Office via email or phone to set up an appointment to visit and/or to start school.

On your child's first day of school, please arrive at ICS by 7:30 AM and come to the reception desk. We can then escort you and your child to class. Student in elementary school will need a snack. We will assist you in organizing lunch purchases, if you wish.

Visit the above blog to view emails sent to new families from the Admissions Office

Elementary School Orientation Schedule: Friday 24 August

The elementary school (ES) orientation will have two sessions, the first for families with students in grades 1-5, and the second for students in early childhood and kindergarten.

Grade 1 to 5 Schedule:

8:30-9:00 AM: Welcome Social, Upper Commons

9:00-9:15 AM: Welcome from Head of School and ES Principal, Upper Commons

9:15-9:30 AM: Presentation from ES Counselors, Upper Commons

9:30-9:45 AM: ES Principal introduces teachers; students and parents go with teachers to classrooms

9:45-10:15 AM: Students and parents with teachers in classrooms

--See All New Families Schedule Below--

1:00-2:00 PM: Grade 4 families are invited to join the grade 4 teaching team and returning families for an information session about the Learning Hub in the new grade 4 space.

Early Childhood and Kindergarten Schedule:

All early childhood families are welcome to attend orientation, but those who attended the Early Childhood Open House on 25 May do not need to attend.

Campus tours are available starting at 10:00 AM, if families want a tour before the early childhood/kindergarten sessions.

10:30-11:00 AM: Welcome from the Head of School and ES Principal; ES Principal introduces teachers; students and parents go with teachers to classrooms

11:00-11:30 AM: Students and parents with teachers in classrooms

All New Families

10:00-11:00 AM: Campus tours available

10:00 AM-12:00 PM: Registration Fair

12:00-12:30 PM: Medical Information/Preparedness Session with Health Office

The snack bar will be open for families who wish to eat lunch on campus.

What is the Registration Fair?

  • Admissions Office
  • Security Office
  • Health Office
  • Athletics and Activities Office
  • ID Card Photos
  • Cashier Office:
    • Deposits for the Prepaid Lunch System (minimum 100 birr payment)
    • Payments for Band Instruments (Grade 5) (1000 birr payment per school instrument)
  • School Store

Middle and High School Orientation Schedule: Thursday 23 August

Families are reminded to plan to arrive in Addis before 22 August. Meron Tekalign in our Counseling Office is emailing all families to set up individual or small group meetings with the counselors before the 23 August orientation. This is when you will be able to discuss your child’s class schedule with the counselor and make any final changes, if needed.

Orientation Day Schedule: Thursday 23 August

A more detailed schedule will be provided in August.

8:30-9:00 AM: Welcome Social, Upper Commons

9:00-9:15 AM: Head of School welcome, Upper Commons

9:15 AM-1:00 PM: Student and Parent Orientation Activities, Various Locations

Lunch will be provided for students and parents in the Lower Commons (cafeteria) during this time.

11:00 AM-2:00 PM: Registration Fair in Gym

What is the Registration Fair?

  • Admissions Office
  • Security Office
  • Health Office
  • Athletics and Activities Office
  • ID Card Photos
  • Cashier Office:
    • Deposits for the Prepaid Lunch System (minimum 100 birr deposit)
    • Deposits for School Laptops (3000 birr deposit per school laptop)
    • Payments for Band Instruments (1000 birr payment per school instrument)
  • School Store
    • PE Kits (approximately 400 birr)
    • School Supplies

Note: an international ATM is available on campus, but is not always reliable. We recommend bringing Ethiopian birr cash.

Key Terms:

  • EC is Early Childhood (EC2, EC3, EC4): preschool for 2-4 year olds
  • ES is Elementary School: kindergarten to grade 5, but often includes early childhood as well
  • MS is Middle School: grades 6-8
  • HS is High School: grades 9-12
  • PYP is the Primary Years Program: curricular framework in ES
  • IBDP or IB is the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program: two year diploma program completed in grades 11 and 12

To Do List: Before and After Your Arrival in Addis

Before Arriving in Addis

  • Submit Enrollment Contract (issued upon acceptance, through the OpenApply system)
  • MS/HS students: purchase any school supplies not available in Addis. Many items are available in the ICS school store. The supply lists are available in the MS and HS sections of this website.
  • For MS/HS students, submit all course requests to Admissions Office and schedule any needed assessments. Admissions will provide further information.

After Arriving in Addis

  • Submit emergency contact form or provide one or more local contact numbers to the Admissions Office if the form cannot yet be fully completed
  • Submit final report cards and/or official transcripts (for high school students); documents can be emailed directly from your current school
  • Come to reception to have your photo taken for your parent ID card, if not done during orientation
  • Submit ID form and police clearance for household staff (driver, nanny, etc)
  • For MS/HS students, purchase physical education (PE) uniform at school store

After Starting School

  • Make tuition payment (generally due two weeks after student begins school)
  • Access the ICS wifi network (GuestNet) - username and password are posted in the Community Commons and the cafeteria
  • Get involved! Meet the Parent Community Link (PCL) and Booster Club, come to parent and student events, spend time on our beautiful campus.

Essential All School Information

ICS Addis follows an August to June school year calendar. The 2018-19 school year calendar is available HERE.

School Hours:

  • All students attend school Monday through Friday. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday school hours are from 8:00 AM to 3:20 PM for kindergarten to grade 12.
  • Wednesdays are an early dismissal day, with students in kindergarten to grade 12 finishing at 2:00 PM.
  • Students in early childhood (EC2, EC3 and EC4) attend from 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM, Monday through Friday.


  • ICS has an on-campus cafeteria for students. More information about the ICS Student ID/Prepaid Card Service for lunch and snack purchases is available HERE.

After School Activities:

  • After school activities (ASAs) are available for students in grade 1 through grade 12 and include clubs, activities and athletics.
  • Registration for ASAs is online, but new families who arrive in the middle of an ASA season are welcome to contact the Athletics and Activities Office directly to discuss their options.
  • Season 1 ASAs start in early September with indoor activities, at the end of the rainy season, Season 2 starts in November and Season 3 starts in March. More information on ASAs, click HERE.
  • Students fluent in a language other than English may be able to join our Mother Tongue Maintenance Program, which runs for one hour on Wednesday afternoons. Mother tongue groups are run by parent volunteers, and we usually have about 20 different groups.

Technology and the 1:1 Laptop Program:

  • ICS has a 1:1 laptop program for students in grades 6 to 12. Click here for more information.
  • Students in grades 6 and 7 must use the school laptop; there is a 3,000 Ethiopian birr deposit for the laptop that must be paid before your child can take the laptop home. Students in grade 8 may choose to bring their own laptop, if they prefer.
  • New students entering grades 9-12 must bring their own laptop.