At CIS, we value our community’s linguistic diversity and are committed to promoting multilingualism. Our students come from over 70 nations, and our language offerings are designed to help them develop an understanding of other cultures as well as to develop proficiency in an additional language.

With the exception of our kindergarten to primary Chinese-English and French-English bilingual programmes, our academic programme is primarily delivered in English. We also support students whose first language is not English through our English Language Learner programme, and to develop skills in their mother tongue wherever possible.

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Students have a choice of two language pathways at CIS: the English programme (which has daily language lessons) or a bilingual programme (Chinese or French).


Daily Chinese or French For 4-12 year olds

Every child from junior kindergarten to grade 6 receives daily Chinese or French lessons as part of our language acquisition programme. Students are grouped according to their linguistic ability and are taught by highly experienced language teachers.

Daily Chinese, French or Spanish For 13-18 year olds

As students move into Secondary School (grades 7-12), language classes may be scheduled in double period blocks (learning will equal five periods per week), which allows for a more focused approach to academic content.

Secondary language options include:

  • Grades 7-10: Chinese, French, Spanish or English
  • Grades 11-12: Chinese, French, Spanish or one of over 53 self-taught languages in the Diploma Programme (IB DP)


Chinese-English bilingual programme for 3 to 12 year olds

CIS' pioneering bilingual Chinese-English programme is designed to allow students to be fluent communicators in both languages, providing them with an edge in an extremely competitive and ever-changing world. Available to our Lakeside campus students in pre-kindergarten to grade 6*. It is fully aligned with the IB PYP and includes two qualified teachers per class: one native English speaker and one native Chinese speaker. Learn more about our world-class Chinese-English bilingual programme.

*Grade 6 bilingual classes will be offered at Lakeside only in 21/22.

Our Chinese bilingual students have opportunities to extend their Chinese literacy through these bilingual courses:

  • Grade 7-8 math (starting August 21)
  • Grades 7-10 Chinese Language & Literature
  • Grades 11-12 Chinese Language & Literature
  • Grades 11-12 Theory of Knowledge in Chinese

French-English bilingual programme for 3 to 12 year olds

CIS offers a French-English bilingual programme for children in grades 2 to 4 in 20/21 and grades 1 to 5 in 21/22. Available at our Lakeside Campus only, this programme is perfect for families who want their children to become bilingual, biliterate and bicultural in both English and French.


CIS offers an after-school paid language programme to students in grades 1-12. Weekly lessons are available in a range of languages including Chinese, French, Japanese, German, Spanish and Dutch.

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