Breadcrumbs

Prospective families,
learn more about our school!

Curriculum

Browse by division

The arts

Music, dance and drama

Service learning

Supporting our local community

Athletics

Team sports and facilities

Extracurricular activities

After-school, clubs, activities and more

Parent community

Meet our parent volunteers

Demographics

Our students

Our student body of approximately 1,400 students, from our Lower (K1-Grade 4), Middle (Grades 5-8) and High (Grades 9-12) schools, represent 70 countries. While around 70% percent of our students hold a US passport, nearly 50% of these students hold a passport from another country. Almost half of our students live in a family in which at least one member holds a non-US passport. More than one-third of our students hold citizenship from more than one country.

Our parents and families

Where do ASL families live?

  • Almost 70% of our students live in northwest London in areas such as St. John’s Wood (40%), Belsize Park, Swiss Cottage, Hampstead, West Hampstead, Queen's Park, Golders Green and Hampstead Garden Suburb.
  • About 20% of our families live west of the School in neighborhoods such as Maida Vale, Notting Hill, Kensington and Holland Park.
  • Families also live in Highgate, Marylebone, Chelsea, South Kensington and Knightsbridge.

We provide busing to all these areas. We have families living in other areas of London as well; if you are interested in living in a particular area and would like to know if we bus there, please contact the admissions office.

How long do families stay at ASL?

  • The average time a student attends ASL is between three and five years, but some students attend for a semester only and others are at ASL from first to last.
  • Around 15% of our students leave at the end of each school year, and at the start of school each August, we welcome approximately 300 new students.

Our teachers

Our teachers come from a wide range of schools in the US and around the world, and represent 14 different nationalities. Approximately 65% hold US citizenship and the average tenure is nine years.

Transitions from other systems

Because we welcome hundreds of new families every year, the administration, faculty, parents and students at ASL put a great deal of time, planning and thought into the ways we can help families as they join our community. The Parent Community Association (PCA) holds sessions that offer opportunities for new families to meet each other and to connect with existing ASL families; these sessions also introduce families to London life and explain how parents can become involved at the School. Our guidance counselors and teachers prepare transition activities and events for new students and create openings for new and returning students to talk about their initial experiences at the School, from their anxieties and expectations, to the things that surprised them.

At the beginning of the academic year, each division holds grade-based orientations that help new students become acquainted with their teachers and the school building. But arguably our greatest "transition team" is our student body, who naturally reach out to make new students feel welcome. Within a week or two, new arrivals begin to feel like seasoned veterans.

Need help understanding US/UK school year, age and grade equivalents? Take a look at the chart, below.

US/UK year equivalents

 

Schools hours and holidays

Typical school day schedule
  • 8:05 am-2:55 pm for students in Grade 1-4
  • 8:05 am-3:05 pm for students in Grades 5-12
  • 8:20 am-2:30 pm for students in K1 and K2
  • Note: on Wednesdays, students are dismissed one hour earlier.
Vacations and holidays

Broadly speaking, we follow an American vacation schedule. View our calendar at-a-glance.

Busing

We provide busing for families living in certain areas of central, north and west London. This service is door to door and accommodates all of our lower and middle school, and most of our high school, after-school activities. Learn more about busing on our transport page.

FAQs

Application process

When should I apply?

We accept applications one year prior to the date of entry. The application form and application fee are due on 15 January; supporting documents should be submitted by 31 January. Families who miss the initial deadline and would like to be considered for the wait pool should complete their applications by 15 March. 

How can I apply?

Families begin the application process by completing a pre-application to create an account in our system; this enables future access to our admissions portal, where you can complete your application, pay the fee, and upload the required documents. If you are unable to apply online, please call the admissions office for further instructions.

The application fee may be paid by check or credit card in pounds sterling or US dollars. Families applying for financial aid are exempt from the application fee.

What is the minimum age?

Applicants for K1 must turn four years old by 31 August and applicants for K2 must turn five by 31 August.

How can we arrange to see the School?

The School offers a number of Open House days during the year, which are listed on the website. For families who reside outside London, the admissions office accepts appointments for small group tours, organized by grades of interest, on most Monday and Friday mornings. More information is available on the visit page of the website. Please note that appointments in January and February are limited, so please book early. Telephone the admissions office, +44 (0)20 7449 1221, or email us to arrange an appointment.

What is the wait pool?

There are times when we do not have enough spaces to accommodate all qualified applicants. Qualified applicants will be offered a place in the wait pool and will be considered for admission if a space becomes available. When offering places to students in the wait pool, the admissions committee considers a number of elements. Preference is given to siblings, and other factors such as class composition are also taken into account.

If a place does not become available during the course of the academic year, the student’s application must be updated by the regular timelines to be considered for the following academic year. Parents should arrange for current school reports, teacher recommendations and standardized testing (as appropriate) to be submitted. Students are asked to complete a new applicant questionnaire.

ASL program

What curriculum does the School offer?

ASL offers an American-style curriculum. Our oldest students may elect to take Advanced Placement (AP) courses in a wide range of subjects, and they will take SATs in Grade 11 and/or Grade 12. We do not offer the IB program or UK examinations.

Advanced Placement (AP) courses

ASL has an extensive AP program in the High School, offering courses in more than 20 subjects. Around 80% of all high school students take at least one exam; the average is three exams per student.

Where do ASL teachers come from?

Our teachers come from a wide range of schools in the US and around the world, and represent 14 different nationalities. Approximately 65% hold US citizenship and the average tenure is nine years.

Does ASL have after-school sports and activities?

Both the Lower and Middle schools have extensive after-school programs; high school students can participate in a variety of after-school clubs. Students in Grade 7 and above can try out for sports teams that compete against other schools.

What are school hours? What is your vacation schedule?

School begins for students in Grades 1-12 at 8:05 am, and ends at 2:55 pm for students in Grade 1-4, and at 3:05 pm for students in Grades 5-12. Students in K1 and K2 arrive at 8:20 am and are dismissed at 2:30 pm. On Wednesdays, students are dismissed one hour earlier. Broadly speaking, we follow an American vacation schedule.

ASL community

Who attends ASL?

Students from more than 70 countries attend ASL. Approximately 70% of our students hold a USA passport and 60% of our students hold a non-US passport. More than 40% of our students hold citizenship from more than one country.

How many students attend ASL?

We have approximately 1,400 students across our Lower (K1-Grade 4), Middle (Grades 5-8) and High (Grades 9-12) schools.

What is the average length of stay?

The average time a student attends ASL is three to five years, but some students attend for a semester only and others are at ASL from first to last. Approximately 15% of our students leave at the end of each school year, and at the start of school each year, we welcome approximately 300 new students.

How does the School help with the transition of new students?

Because we welcome hundreds of new families every year, the administration, faculty, parents and students at ASL put a great deal of time, planning and thought into the ways we can help families as they join our community. The Parent Community Association (PCA) holds sessions that offer opportunities for new families to meet each other and to connect with existing ASL families; these sessions also introduce families to London life and explain how parents can become involved at the School. Our guidance counselors and teachers prepare transition activities and events for new students and create openings for new and returning students to talk about their initial experiences at the School, from their anxieties and expectations, to the things that surprised them.

At the beginning of the academic year, each division holds grade-based orientations that help new students become acquainted with their teachers and the school building. But arguably our greatest "transition team" is our student body, who naturally reach out to make new students feel welcome. Within a week or two, new arrivals begin to feel like seasoned veterans.

Need help understanding US/UK school year, age and grade equivalents? View this chart.

 

Where do ASL families live?

Almost 70% of our students live in northwest London in areas such as St. John’s Wood (40%), Belsize Park, Swiss Cottage, Hampstead, West Hampstead, Queen's Park, Golders Green and Hampstead Garden Suburb.

About 20% of our families live west of the School in neighborhoods such as Maida Vale, Notting Hill, Kensington and Holland Park.

Families also live in Highgate, Marylebone, Chelsea, South Kensington and Knightsbridge.

We provide busing to all these areas. We have families living in other areas of London as well; if you are interested in living in a particular area and would like to know if we bus there, please contact the admissions office.

Does ASL provide busing?

We provide busing for families living in certain areas of central, north and west London. This service is door to door and accommodates all of our lower and middle school, and most of our high school, after-school activities. Learn more about busing on our transport page.

Financial aid

Does ASL provide financial aid?

ASL believes that students who meet the school’s admissions requirements should have the opportunity to attend the School and participate in its extracurricular activities regardless of their family’s ability to pay the full cost of the programs. Financial aid is available for tuition and for additional fees noted above, including the SLD program and trips. Read our financial aid FAQs.

Age eligibility

Applicants for K1 must turn four years old by 31 August and applicants for K2 must turn five by 31 August. We require all students to be fully toilet trained in order to begin school. View a chart comparing grade levels and ages across US, IB and UK curriculums.

Does ASL have a wait list or wait pool?

Each admissions season, we have more qualified applicants than spaces available. To accommodate such applicants, we create a wait pool and offer families the chance to "wait" for an opening. The pool is distinct from a list in that candidates are neither ranked nor ordered; all candidates are reconsidered for each new space as it arises, regardless of when they entered the pool. We contact families immediately if a place becomes available, and request that families do not call or send additional letters since movement in the pool cannot be accelerated or influenced.

If a decision letter does not specifically offer placement in the wait pool, we regret that the candidate is not eligible to "wait" and must reapply for the next academic year.

Let our students be your guides! See our "Life in London" videos created by ASL students!

Applying for the 2019-20 school year