FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Classes generally range in size from 14-18 depending on enrollment. All classes in Preschool through Kindergarten have a teacher and a teaching assistant.
Prior to entering Kindergarten, students make their language choice and they will study this language through 4th grade. At the end of 4th grade, as our students prepare to move up to Middle School (which begins in 5th grade), they may either continue with the same language or switch. Students in 7th grade have the option of studying Latin, a two-year course of study, in lieu of French or Spanish.
While we try to accommodate each person's language request, we must also maintain ratios in classrooms. If one grade's language has too many students, we may require that some students take another language offered.
No. Congressional's belief in the importance of innovative, dynamic teaching is one reason the school does not participate in the SOL program. Our SOL-independence empowers teachers to introduce new resources and explore challenging new material. Teachers can tailor their teaching to their students.
Congressional's own benchmarks of achievement are fully articulated. For each school, a concise scope and sequence outlines curriculum and learning objectives by subject area. Assessment of student performance includes a teacher's direct observation of a child's understanding. The external indicator we use is Educational Records Bureau (ERB) testing.
Children in all grades have specialized teachers for physical education, music, art, and world language. Middle School students also study speech and drama which includes debating, public speaking and broadcast journalism. Middle school students also take a financial literacy class once a year.
In addition to the classes above, our 5th grade students take an "Innovation" class for the full year and our 6th-8th graders have choice electives that change each quarter. Choice electives vary on the interest of the students from year to year but classes often include Guitar, Cooking, Robotics, Jam Sesh (music), Mixed Media Art, Technical Theater, Broadcast News, Life Skills, Yearbook, and more.
Congressional offers an extensive after school sports program with Junior Varsity (Grades 5-6) and Varsity (Grades 7-8) teams that play other local schools. We offer a variety of sports and have a no-cut policy. As a result, we love that around 95% of our middle school students participate in athletics.
Our teams are a part of the Capital Athletics Conference and the president of the conference is our Director of Athletics and Physical Education, Coach Tavis Laws.
All students in Kindergarten through Grade 8 are required to wear uniforms. They are optional for younger children.
Throughout the year we have free dress days, spirit days, and student council spirit days that offer an occasional break from the uniform.
Congressional School offers both door-to-door and community stop bus transportation. This service is able to be selected for students in preschool or higher. To learn more and to see the community stops and door-to-door eligible zones, please visit the transportation page on our website.
Congressional's Extended Hours Program (EHP) is available in the morning from 7:00-8:15 am and in the afternoon from 3:30 to 6:00 pm. We do not provide transportation for children who are in EHP.
Congressional School is committed to accepting and enrolling a well-qualified and diverse student body. To that end, we make every effort to ensure that motivated, talented, well-rounded students have the opportunity to receive an education at Congressional, regardless of cost.
Financial aid decisions are made independently from admissions decisions. Financial aid is based solely on demonstrated need as determined by our Financial Aid Committee, which relies on the analysis provided by the School and Student Services for Financial Aid (http://sssbynais.org/parents) as well as the availability of funds and the number of applicants for financial aid. Financial aid is available beginning in our Preschool classes.
We know that financing an independent school education can be a difficult process, and we would like to help in any way we can. For any questions concerning financial aid, tuition or payment plans, please do not hesitate to call our Director of Admission and Financial Aid, Gretchen Herbst: 703-533-1064.
Early Childhood hours are from 7:00 am to 6:00 pm.
Preschool - 8th grade hours are from 8:15 am to 3:30 pm.
Extended Hours are at 7:00 - 8:15 am and 3:30 - 6:00 pm.
To learn more, ask questions, or schedule a tour, please contact: