American School of Kuwait
|The American School of Kuwait|
|Principal||High School: Michael Murphy, Middle School: Nancy AbdulGhafoor, Elementary School: Steven Haley|
|Faculty||186 full-time faculty 2015-2016 school year|
|Number of students||2,037|
|School color(s)||Blue and gold|
|Athletics conference||NESAC, KSAA, SAISA|
The American School of Kuwait (also known as ASK) is a K-12 private school institution which also includes a pre-school (referred to as the Child Development Center). It is located in Hawalli, Kuwait.
In 1963, a group of American parents began the process of forming a new international school in Kuwait. This new school's first term began in September, 1964, in the Dasman Area of Sharq, Kuwait, and was known as the International School of Kuwait.
In 1969, the ASK Campus separated into two campuses, with one in Salwa and one in Surra. The Salwa campus contained the Elementary school, while the Surra campus contained both the Middle and High Schools. The school received its initial US accreditation from the Middle States Association in 1971, and has been receiving it continuously since then.
The school was closed for the 1990 to 1991 school term, due to the events of the invasion of Kuwait. The school reopened in the fall of 1991.
Over the summer of 1994, both ASK campuses, the Surra and Salwa campuses, moved again to a new campus in the Hawalli area. This reunited the elementary, middle, and high school students once again in one campus for the start of the 1994 to 1995 school term. The school has been at this location ever since.
Rebecca Ness is the current superintendent of the school. The principals of each of the schools are Mike Murphy (high school), Nancy Abdulghafoor (middle school), and Steve Caley (elementary school).
The school currently has 183 full-time faculty members, including 95 American nationals, 31 Canadian citizens, and 57 teachers of fifteen other nationalities.
The School currently (as of September, 2016) has approximately 2,037 students total. Approximately 20% of the students are US citizens, 54% are locals, and the remaining 26% represent 65 other nationalities. Pre-K and elementary have 1000 students, the middle school has 446 students, and the high school has 591 students; within the high school there are 137 seniors, 146 juniors, 156 sophomores, and 152 freshmen.
Campus and facilities
The school possesses one of the largest campuses in Kuwait. The campus now houses 145 classrooms, which include eight computer labs, four music rooms, four art rooms, ten science labs, two large library/media centers, two gymnasiums, a fitness center and weight room, an indoor 25-meter pool, a large multi-purpose auditorium, and three large outdoor play areas.
The curriculum is similar to that of US general academic and college preparatory schools. The school’s testing programs include the SAT, PSAT, Plan, Explore, ACT and the MAPS. The language of instruction is English. French and Spanish are taught as foreign languages. Religious instruction is required for Muslims, as is Arabic for all students (students who hold passports from Arab countries take Arabic language courses through graduation, while holders of passports from non-Arab countries take Arabic-As-a-Second-Language courses until grade 11).
The elementary program, in which teachers are organized into grade-level teams, features specialists in science, art, computer studies, music, drama, physical education, Arabic, and Islamic Studies. The middle school, which includes sixth through eighth grades, utilizes interdisciplinary teams and a curriculum based on a block schedule. The high school, which currently offers seventeen AP courses, is constantly re-evaluating its programs to better serve the needs and interests of students.
Athletics and extracurricular activities
ASK offers many clubs and organizations with activities from service projects to leadership opportunities and competitions. All students are encouraged to join and take active part in the club or activity of their choice and interest. Previously a member of both the Eastern Mediterranean Activities Conference (EMAC) and the Kuwait Foreign Schools Activities Conference (KFSAC), ASK is now a charter member of the Near East Schools Activities Conference (NESAC), and is also a member of the Kuwait Schools Activities Association (KSAA), and the South Asian Inter-Scholastic Association (SAISA).
ASK also offers a diverse choice of non-athletic extra-curricular activities as well. They include Academic Games, Model United Nations, Forensics and Debate, NESAC Band & Choir Festival, TAISM Festival of Choirs, INJAZ (Junior Achievement), Sound and Lights Crew, Fall & Spring Drama Productions, National Honor Society, Student Council, and Sustainability Committee. The Tri-M International Music Honor Society, the National Thespian Society and Mu Alpha Theta Mathematics Honor Society all have branches at ASK.
The American School of Kuwait has adopted a fixed dress code for all students. All students must wear the official ASK uniform, which is available for purchase at the ASK Store. The uniform includes a standard pair of dark navy blue pants, as well as a school-specific polo shirt in different colors (light blue for elementary students, white for middle school students, and dark blue for high school students).
Graduates of ASK have entered a variety of universities in the United States and worldwide. Alumni are known to have attended some of the most prestigious institutions throughout the world, including Harvard University, Columbia University, The University of Pennsylvania, Stanford University, Rice University, The University of Virginia, Brown University, Georgetown University, Duke University, The University of Chicago, Northwestern University, The Ohio State University, Johns Hopkins University, The University of Michigan, Williams College, Middlebury College, McGill University, The University of Toronto, Concordia University, and The University of London.