ICSstudents spend an extraordinary amount of time pushing themselves to be the best they can be. This is especially true in the classrooms where students, challenged by their teachers, listen to the questions asked and comments made by their peers and find themselves elevating the level of their own contributions.

But the desire to be better doesn’t stop with academics. Some examples are – the Primary School students presenting skits to their fellow students on the values of persistence, cooperation, empathy or appreciation – the Middle School students, realizing they have some free time at the end of lunch, agreeing to sit together at a sunny window bench to get their math homework done so they have less to finish when they return from their afternoon track meet – in the Upper School, a student puts in an extra 45 minutes of drumming practice in the auditorium, inadvertently serenading his colleagues who sit outside in the courtyard.

ICS kids want to be the best students they can, the best athletes they can, the best artists they can, the best musicians they can, and early on they realize that one of the best, most enjoyable ways to attain all that success is to be the best friends they can.

ICS is a place where students feel supported, even celebrated. If they’ve got a passion for something – from environmental concerns to competitive mathematics to photography to swimming – they know that their pursuit of that passion will be applauded by friends. Students here seem to derive as much pleasure from the joy and success of their friends as they do from their own joys and successes. They enjoy the ability to be whoever they happen to be, openly and honestly, in a community that embraces them.