Almaty International School

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Almaty International School
Logo of the Almaty International School.jpg
Logo of the Almaty International School
Kalkaman Village

TypePrivate, non-profit
EstablishedAugust 1993
OversightQuality Schools International
DirectorDr. Mitchell Elswick
Directors of InstructionKurt Rix
Heather Naro
Enrollment503 (as of November 2018)
Color(s)Blue and White
MascotSnow Leopard
Team nameSnow Leopards

Almaty International School (AIS) in Kazakhstan is a private non-profit institution that opened in September 1993.[1] It offers education in English for preschool (3–4 years), elementary, middle, and secondary students. The school year consists of three terms extending from late August until mid-June. The school is located on nearly seven hectares of land on the edge of Almaty, the largest city in Kazakhstan.


Students come from 45 countries around the world including Kazakhstan, South Korea, United States, Russia, Canada, and many others. The school offers a mastery-learning program with a curriculum similar to that of U.S. public and private schools.

While instruction is in English, language classes are offered in French, Spanish, and Russian. For Kazakh citizens, Kazakh language, history, and geography classes are required. Subjects include Literature, History, Geography, Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Technology, and electives.

Almaty International School


As of June, 2016, the enrollment is 549 students.


Activities for elementary students include outdoor sports, indoor games, creative drama, dance, model making, sewing, needlepoint, crochet painting, drawing, art and crafts, storytelling, puzzles, board games, science activities, computer simulations, and bookmaking. Older students can be involved in drama, soccer, volleyball, and basketball after school.

Clubs in AIS for middle school and secondary students include National Honor Society, Tuck Shop (a student-run store during break time), Student Council AIS, Helping Hands (a volunteer philanthropy club), Roots and Shoots (a volunteer club focused on the making AIS environmental friendly as well as doing environmental service projects around Almaty), Youth x Women Club (founded in 2017-18 school year by Aiganym "Aiko" Sadykova that helps underprivileged women in Almaty), Yearbook Club, and Debate Club (founded and led by an experienced coach from St. Louis, Mr. Adam Saligman). AIS also has junior varsity, varsity and elementary sports teams. Sports vary through seasons. The sports offered at AIS are cross country, soccer, basketball, volleyball, track and field, ping pong, badminton, swimming, and debate.

Sports Achievements in 2017-2018 School Year[edit]

During Central Asian Soccer Classic (CASC) 2017, JV Boys Soccer Team earned second place in their division. Varsity Girls A team finished third, and Varsity Boys A team finished third as well. The cross-country season came to its culmination during the Central Asian Cross-Country Classic (CAXC) at Tien Shan and CEESA (Central and Eastern European Schools Association) meet in Tbilisi. AIS dominated the CAXC, grabbing first places, while in Tbilisi JV AIS team finished third overall, and AIS Varsity team finished second overall. In November 2017, 5 students from Debate Club went to World Scholar's Cup's Tournament of Champions held at Yale University. While all 5 of students earned medals for various achievements, Sultan Kamysbayev ranked in the Top 50 (of over 1000 qualifying students from around the world) in several of the academic subjects, and Alice Gilman earned a gold medal in debate, writing, a couple of the academic subjects, and ranked #62 overall (factoring in every event in the World Scholar's Cup), out of again, over 1000 students. Additionally, she was chosen for the Showcase Debate, based on her performance in the competition and delivered a sterling performance for all the students, coaches, and parents to watch.

Student evaluation[edit]

Students are expected to achieve mastery grades of "A" or "B". Student evaluations, called "status reports", are issued five times each year at the end of each "Quintile". Data is electronically entered regularly and parents may request a status report at any time. Quality Schools International teaches their students the success orientations which include actions such as concern for others, kindness and politeness, aesthetic appreciation, independent endeavor, group interaction, responsibility, and trustworthiness. When students achieve mastery in any of these sections they receive an "E" for exemplary work, otherwise, a student may receive an "S" for success or an "N" for not yet achieved.

Success Orientations[edit]

-Concerns for others
-Group Interaction
-Aesthetic Appreciation
-Independent Endeavor
-Kindness and politeness


The first QSI school was founded in 1971 in Sana'a, Yemen. AIS was opened in September 1993. After 10 years, the school moved to a large purpose-built facility on a large piece of land on the edge of the city. The new school has two main buildings, one annex, a middle school building, two playground areas, tennis courts, two gyms, and a professional soccer field with a running track.


Almaty International School has been accredited through the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, Pennsylvania, USA.


Some classes are mandatory for graduation. Extra courses may be needed to apply for an academic diploma or an academic diploma with honors.

Starting in middle school (6th-8th grades) students have the choice between three languages: French, Spanish or Russian. Two years of foreign languages are mandatory for the academic and academic diploma with honors in secondary. Kazakh language, history, and geography classes are mandatory for all Kazakh nationals in this school.

The required courses for the diplomas are listed below:
General Diploma:

  • English Classes:
     *Writing I & II
     *Literature I & II
  • Math Classes:
     *Algebra I &II
  • Science Classes:
     *Physical Science
     *Physics or Chemistry
  • Social Science Classes:
     *World Geography
     *Modern World History
  • Arts Classes:
     *Drama, Music and/or Art (choose two of the three)
  • Physical Education and Health Classes:
     *Physical Education

Academic Diploma:

In addition to General Diploma requirements:

  • English Classes:
     *American Literature
     *British Literature
     *Research Project
  • Social Science Classes:
     *U.S. History
     *World Government

Academic Diploma with Honors:

Add any two Advanced Placement courses listed below:

  • U.S. History
  • World History (requires Modern World History as a pre-requisite)
  • Economics (Macro and Microeconomics)
  • Biology (requires Biology as a pre-requisite)
  • Physics (B) (requires Physics as a pre-requisite and Calculus for Physics C)
  • Chemistry (requires chemistry as a pre-requisite)
  • Calculus (AB) (requires Pre-Calculus as a pre-requisite)
  • English Literature and Composition (requires American Literature as a pre-requisite
  • French Language (requires French IV as a pre-requisite)
  • Music Theory
  • Art
  • Language and Composition

On campus[edit]

  • Two computer/IT labs
  • Two gyms (for secondary (standard size), for elementary (smaller))
  • A natural-turf soccer field and rubber running track (400m)
  • Cafeteria
  • Music and orchestra rooms
  • Art studios
  • Science labs
  • Multi-functioning rubber court under roof (used primarily for PE) ("Thunder Dome")
  • Four playground areas
  • Parking lots (for teachers & parents)
  • A library/Media Center
  • Vehicle repair garage

See also[edit]


  1. ^ International, Quality Schools. "Quality Schools International". Retrieved 2019-03-13.

External links[edit]