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Frequently Asked Questions

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What qualifies me as an “international” student?

If you are studying on an F‐1 visa, require residential accommodations, or ESL support, you are required to apply as an international student.

In what grades can international students apply?

Chattanooga Christian School accepts international students in grades 9–11. Students from mainland China are encouraged to apply no later than 10th grade to be considered for admission.

When should I apply?

CCS’s International Student Office practices rolling admissions, meaning that students can apply as early as they like. Seats are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Students are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

What documents are required to complete the application process?
  • A recent photo of the applicant
  • A copy of your passport
  • A certified copy of your academic record (transcript) from 8th grade until the time of your application that is translated into English and scaled to the American (100 point) system.
  • A certified copy of your English proficiency exam results.
Which language test scores will CCS accept with the application?

In an effort to offer convenient testing options to students in every nation and from a variety of originating sources; including educational institutions and language centers, CCS student applicants can choose to provide results from any one of the following 7 pre-approved tests: SLEP, ELTiS, TOEFL iBT, TOEFL-PB, TOEFL JR, SLATE (ITEP), or IELTS. Click here for a complete description.

What are the minimum language requirements?

For a complete list of language requirements by grade level, please click here.

How does the application process work?

After a student has completed the online application and submitted the necessary supporting documents, they will be contacted to schedule a Skype interview. A final decision will be made and communicated within 48 hours of that interview.

If accepted, the student will receive a letter of acceptance and an Enrollment Packet immediately following the issuance of that decision. The student will then have 2 weeks to return the Enrollment Packet along with a 3,000 USD non-refundable deposit. Once those items are received, the student is officially “enrolled,” securing their seat in the coming class.

How will I obtain my student visa if I apply to CCS?

Once an international student receives a letter of acceptance and CCS receives the 3,000 USD non-refundable deposit, the school will immediately issue the I-20 document needed to obtain an F-1 visa. Upon receipt of the I-20, the student will make an appointment with their local consulate to apply for their visa.

What happens to my deposit if I am rejected for my visa?

In the event that a student is rejected for their visa after two good-faith attempts, the entirety of their deposit will be refunded in full.

When will I travel to the US? When does school start?

Calendars for the coming year, including the start date of school, are determined the first week of February of the prior school year. Do not buy plane tickets before that calendar is published. School usually begins the 2nd or 3rd week of August. Click here for additional information.

What is included in my international tuition?

International tuition generally includes tuition, room and board in the Homestay Program, transportation, all meals, all curricular and elective fees, textbooks and materials, and the ELL program.

When is international tuition due?

A 3,000 USD non-refundable tuition deposit is due within 2 weeks of receiving your admissions decision. The remainder of tuition is due July 1st.

How many “seats” does CCS have available for international students in the coming admissions season?

This number changes from year-to-year and is not communicated publicly. In addition to Homestay capacity, the admissions committee looks at the diversity of the program and makes an effort to have a wide variety of countries of origin represented. As such, there are times where students from a particular recruitment region will be capped at a certain number, so as to not adversely affect the overall goals of the program.

How many AP courses do you offer?

CCS currently offers 10 AP courses.

What are the accommodations offered to international students?

CCS offers a Host Family “Homestay” program. Students enjoy enhanced cultural integration, accelerated English learning, and personalized care. Click here for more information.

May I travel during holidays and summer breaks? Am I required to?

International students are required to exit their Homestay accommodations during the summer months. Students can choose to stay with their host families or they can travel (with restrictions) during school holidays. For more information on travel, please click here.

Will I be able to play sports at CCS?

Athletics inherently involve competition. Some sports at CCS are extremely competitive, while others allow any athletically eligible student who would like to join to do so. With nearly 50 athletic teams to choose from, there is a place for everyone; however, the type of sport will be based on skill level and availability.

International students are required to complete additional paperwork for athletic eligibility. Included in that paperwork is a copy of the students translated and scaled official transcript from their home country, beginning in 8th grade and continuing to present. Students with incomplete documentation will have their eligibility delayed or possibly rejected.

What electronic device (computer/tablet) do I need to bring with me?

Students may bring their own laptop or tablet to the US, but a Dell Chromebook is given to each international student. The Chromebook is most compatible to the needs of the classroom.

Do I need to carry a translator?

International students are required to carry a translator as a part of their school uniform and are responsible for the expense of such translation device. International students are only permitted to use translators which do not allow internet access. Smart phones or any devices which allow internet browsing and/or games are not permitted to be used as translators.

How will I obtain a phone plan?

Students will need to arrive to the US with a functioning cellular phone. Students will be given assistance in signing up for a simple, local cellular phone plan with monthly pre-paid billing. By inserting a provided SIM card into the phone, students will be able to obtain a local phone number. The monthly billing will be assigned to the credit card that the student brings with them upon arrival.

How will I handle money/banking?

Students will need to arrive to the US with a functioning credit card to cover expenses. Students will be given assistance to open a simple, local checking account to use while in the US. This will allow parents to transfer small amounts of money into an account where the student can withdraw dollars as needed.

Will there be an orientation to help me be successful at CCS?

CCS offers international students a comprehensive 3-day orientation prior to the start of school. Students will have a chance to make authentic American friendships, choose the proper courses to help them reach their academic goals, meet their teachers, be introduced to a variety of student life activities, purchase a phone plan, open a bank account, and purchase uniforms. The orientation experience grows and improves every year and is a critical part of the student experience at CCS.

CCS features a Global Ambassador program, whereby CCS students volunteer to mentor new international students on a 1-to-1 level. Global ambassadors reach out to their international students through email and social media, beginning in the summer time, and attend a portion of the international student orientation to assist with welcoming the new students into the CCS family.

How will my parents communicate with the school about my progress and well-being?

Direct communication between the school and parents is vital to student success. Please contact the International Student Program Office at isp@ccsk12.com if you have a question or issue. It would be our pleasure to facilitate a translator when needed to ensure proper communication.

What medical considerations will I need to make to study in the US?

At the time of enrollment, each student will receive notice of CCS medical requirements. When you arrive, the CCS Nurse will review your immunization records. If you are missing the necessary documents to support that you’ve received any of the required immunizations, we will have them administered to you before you start school. If you have any questions about the requirements, please contact us. It would be our pleasure to assist you and your home country physician in completing the process before arrival.

Since I’m applying during the school year, what should I do about my final semester transcripts?

When you apply, we ask for your transcripts from the prior two years. Because you were likely still completing the current semester at the time of your application, the results of your final performance in your home country will likely not be included in our admissions records. When you complete your final semester in your home country, it is important that you provide us with a copy of an official, translated transcript for any coursework completed that was not included in your application documents.