Frequently Asked Questions

Click in the links below or scroll down to see the answers to these questions frequently asked by international transferees considering The Summit: 

How big is The Summit’s multinational community?

We live in a city where many multinational companies have hubs so our international population tends to fluctuate as executives are transferred in and out of the country. According to our records, ethnic minorities comprise 26% of our student population and our families have citizenship in 22 countries. But those numbers don’t tell the whole story. Among the countries represented in our first- and second-generation multinational community are: Australia, Belgium, Bermuda, Canada, China, Columbia, England, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Lebanon, Mexico, the Netherlands, Pakistan, Peru, the Philippines, Poland, Romania, Spain, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates and Vietnam. Back to top.

I am a prospective international student interested in studying abroad. Does your school accept international students?

Absolutely. We have a rich international history, and welcome a culturally diverse student body. We offer the I-20, and will assist with coordinating the F-1 status. Back to top.

What is the application process?

We prefer that all prospective international students apply through an approved agency that specializes with international students. The agency should be able to assist the student in completing the application process. In addition to reviewing character strength and academic ability, we require that all international students establish proof of proficiency in English through the TOEFL, TOEFL Jr., along with standardized testing, and go through a phone/Skype interview. For any questions on this process, or for agency recommendations, please contact Beth Bissmeyer in the Admission Office at (513) 871-4700, ext. 278. Back to top.

What kinds of foreign study opportunities are available?

A committee of Upper School faculty coordinates educational trips to foreign countries. These opportunities have provided many multinational experiences for Summit students over the years to further their study of language, art, music, religion and classical cultures.

  • Since the early 1990s, the school has been involved in an exchange program with a school in Nancy, France named Saint Dominique. The school alternates annually between hosting students from France or taking students to visit Saint Dominique.
  • The science department offers an Honors Marine Science Seminar in Hawaii on even-numbered years in June or July. The course is open to students following the completion of their ninth grade year after completing College-Prep or Honors Biology. The interdisciplinary science elective focuses on the ocean ecosystem and its inhabitants.
  • The foreign language department has two regular educational travel experiences, one to Spain and France and another to Italy and Greece. The Spain/France trip varies from trip to trip but usually includes Barcelona, Paris, the Loire Valley, guided tours of museums, cathedrals, and other important historic and cultural sights such as Monet's gardens at Giverny, France or Poble Espanyol in Barcelona, Spain, attending performances such as Flamenco dancing, experiencing an overnight train trip from Spain to France, and time spent participating in the culture of both countries (using acquired communication skills. The classical trip is integrated with the curriculum for Latin and ancient Greek. It includes visits to the antiquities of southern Italy, monuments and museums of southern Italy and Greece, which help students explore the language and culture. Students see Greek and Roman architecture in visits to Pompeii, Herculaneum and Paestum, climb Mt. Vesuvius, take gladiator lessons at the Coliseum, and tour the Forum, Palatine Hill and The Vatican in Rome.
  • In addition, many students and their parents have sought out individual summer programs for study and for service. In recent years, these experiences have taken students to Costa Rica, the Honduras, Guatemala, Belize and the Bahamas. Back to top.

What languages are taught?

The Summit begins foreign language study in earnest in kindergarten, although it is introduced even earlier to pre-schoolers. Parents of kindergarten students are asked to choose French or Spanish for a 13-year course of study. Accommodations are made on a case-by-case basis for students who transfer to the school in the middle years. In Middle School, students are given an introduction to Latin. In the upper grades, students can opt to add a language, preferably in addition to the one they are already taking. Choices are French, Spanish, Latin, ancient Greek and Mandarin. Honors and Advanced Placement classes in foreign language are available in the Upper School. Back to top.

Do you provide English as a Second Language classes?

The Summit does not offer ESL classes, and requires English proficiency during the admission process. Back to top.

How does the school help students who are learning to speak English?

Except for foreign language classes, classes at The Summit are taught in English. The school reviews the needs of each student with parents to determine how to best acclimate the child into the curriculum and community. Companies of transferees often provide language tutors who are welcome in our classrooms to help students become immersed in English. Sometimes in the past, the school has been able to place students in classes with other students who speak the same language or students who share common interests. The Summit has relationships with language specialists and can provide resources and referrals for tutoring in English for students and their parents. Back to top.

Will my child forget our native language and heritage?

Many international parents express a concern that their children will become so immersed in English that they will forget their native language. Because classes are taught in English, re-enforcement of the second language becomes largely a practice that takes place at home or contact within larger multinational groups in the Greater Cincinnati community. When families have opted to alternate between schools in their home countries and The Summit in order to preserve language skills, The Summit will work with families on curriculum choices needed to maintain college-bound standards in the U.S. Back to top.

How does The Summit recognize multinational diversity?

We are a multicultural community that is blessed with the benefits of diversity and our mission is to love and appreciate each child. World geography is a core part of the curriculum and study of other countries begins as early as kindergarten. Multinational students are encouraged to share their heritage through classroom projects, writing and oratory assignments. Parents often make classroom presentations on their diverse experiences. Faculty and parents and the Diversity and Inclusion Committee seek opportunities to celebrate diversity in various events, displays and presentations throughout the year. We celebrate Hispanic Awareness Month and African-American History Month. Additionally, each year we host a Global Evening, which allows students in Human Geography present their research provides a forum for discussion about global experiences. Back to top.

Does a Summit education prepare students for study in foreign countries?

The high school curriculum is focused on placing students in U.S. colleges but many Summit students are accepted to many of the nation’s most prestigious colleges and universities and 100% of our graduates go on to attend an institution of higher learning. The College Counseling Team works with international families on a case-by-case basis to help families meet their needs for meeting the standards for college acceptance in their home countries. Since 2006, Summit graduates have been accepted into McGill University, Acadia University, the University of British Columbia, Concordia University and the University of Waterloo in Canada; St. Andrew’s University, University of Edinburg and the University of Glasgow in Scotland and the London School of Economics. In 2010, a Summit graduate was named a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University in London. Back to top.

What kind of advanced college prepatory classes does The Summit offer to help students get into top-tier universities?

International families moving to the U.S. frequently ask about the difference between The International Baccalaureate® (IB) and Advanced Placement® classes. Each year, the Summit typically offers 20-25 Advanced Placement classes approved by the College Board in the U.S. Like the IBs, these classes introduce students to the rigors of college-level classes while they are still in high school and allow them to earn college credit. Not only do U.S. universities accept these credit hours but universities in more than 55 countries recognize AP Exam scores in the admission process and/or for credit and advanced placement. The College Board Web site offers a guide to admissions requirements in various countries. Back to top.