Will my child be at a disadvantage if our family does not speak Mandarin?
No. 90% of our students are from non-Mandarin speaking households.
What are the advantages of a bilingual education over a monolingual education?
Dr. Duarte Silva of the Stanford University School of Education states that a bilingual child has a
higher level of mental flexibility and is more original. He or she will be more divergent with his or her
thinking and will always have two or three solutions for a problem. It has been proven that bilingual children demonstrate a higher level of academic performance amongst students. They surpass or at least are equal to the monolingual students and no negative effects are found in bilingualism. In addition, bilingualism promotes the development of multiple perspectives about people and about cultures.
How can I assist with schoolwork if I do not know the Chinese language?
Parents can best support their child by showing an interest in the Chinese homework and by asking the child to recite or show what he or she learned in the classroom each day. Chinese teachers assign homework that can be completed without parental assistance. If students prefer assistance, our Chinese faculty is available for tutoring in the extended day program.
Will my child be deficient in English if she or he only studies it for half a day?
No. Numerous studies indicate bilingual children surpass their monolingual peers in test scores and comprehension and acquire advanced problem-solving skills. The consistent high achievement levels in English standardized tests at CAIS and our outstanding high school placement records support and validate these studies.
Why is it important to learn Mandarin?
Any immersion language program has proven benefits for your child. However, given the strategic, cultural, political and economic importance of China, Mandarin cannot be ignored. Mandarin is the official Chinese dialect of China and Taiwan. It is the most commonly taught Chinese dialect in Asian
countries and in colleges and universities around the world. Mandarin Chinese is also the dominant
language for commerce and culture in East Asia. The relationship between the U.S. and greater China is the most important strategic relationship in the world today. Those who have knowledge of Mandarin — as well as Chinese culture, values and history — will be positioned to have an impact
on the economic, political and cultural well-being of the United States, China and the world.
What is the ethnic and racial background of CAIS students?
For 2011-2012 school year, 39% are Asian American; 37% Multiracial; 22% Caucasian; 1% Hispanic and 1% African American. Our community consists of at least 18 different nationalities and we have 15 different home languages spoken.
How is CAIS different from other schools?
CAIS is the nation's leader in pre-collegiate Mandarin Chinese and English language immersion education. As an independent elementary and middle school, it offers immersion education in Mandarin Chinese and English to students from Pre-Kindergarten through eighth grade. Most after-school and weekend Chinese schools teach Chinese language arts only. CAIS teaches the core subjects including math, social studies and language arts -- in both English and Mandarin. By learning through instruction in each language for half of each day, our students learn to speak, read, write and understand both English and Mandarin Chinese fluently.
How involved do parents need to be at CAIS?
Parents are encouraged to support school fundraisers and to participate in volunteer activities throughout the year. The CAIS Parent Association Council oversees volunteer committees. We believe that parental involvement enhances a student's academic performance and learning experience. We enroll families, not only students.
Is CAIS accredited?
Yes, CAIS is fully accredited by the Schools Commission of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and by the California Association of Independent Schools.
Is tuition assistance available?
Socio-economic diversity is important to our board, administration and our community. Each year we set aside an amount equal to 11--15% of tuition revenues for tuition assistance/financial aid. For 2011-12 school year, 25% of the student body received tuition assistance. The average grant was $9,725.
Is after school care available?
Yes. CAIS have a variety of programs including after school Study Hall (3-4 p.m.), Extended Day (3-6 p.m.) and numerous enrichment programs which take place after school at an additional fee. Complementary morning extended care/ drop-off begins at 7:30 a.m.
What high schools do CAIS graduates attend?
CAIS graduates are accepted by schools of their choice in a competitive admission market.
Below is a list of the most prestigious high schools our most recent graduates are attending:
- Bay School
- Drew College Preparatory School
- International High School
- Lick-Wilmerding High School
- Lowell High School
- Marin Academy
- Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory School
- St. Ignatius College Preparatory
- Stuart Hall High School
- University High School
- The Urban School of San Francisco