The International School of Lausanne was originally founded by the Reverend Wylie and a group of English businessmen to meet the needs of the English-speaking community. It was then called the English School of Lausanne. It opened on 5 May with seven students and one teacher, Miss Dorothy Hynes.
The school was renamed The Commonwealth-American School and moved to Pully with its 40 students.
The school had 96 students of nine different nationalities (50% American, 18% British, 9% Scandinavian, 23% other) from ages 5 to 13.
Enrolment reached 136. Class sizes averaged 14 students. Skiing, skating, and swimming were the students’ favourite activities.
The School was finally renamed the International School of Lausanne. Student and staff numbers increased and created a strong international community. Simon Taylor came to Lausanne, after Basel and Helsinki, as the new ISL Director.
Throughout the years, the School evolved the curriculum in order to serve the increasingly international community. The International Baccalaureate (IB) was introduced in 2000 to reflect ISL’s multicultural outlook. ISL became a full-IB school offering the Primary Years Programme (PYP), Middle Years Programme (MYP), and the Diploma Programme (DP). Negotiations also began on the new campus in Le Mont-sur-Lausanne.
The new purpose-built campus in Le Mont-sur-Lausanne was completed with 557 students enrolled. This campus allowed for ISL community to enjoy new and modern facilities, such as sports fields, science and design labs, as well as a large library.
A further expansion project was launched with the goal of improving the quality of the facilities and increasing the opportunities within the educational programme. A purpose-built Early Childhood Centre opened its doors in August 2014, and the South Building was opened in 2015.
Despite the expansion and the change of location, the school has worked hard to retain the sense of a close community where young people are known as individuals and can flourish in a supportive atmosphere. The School’s core values remain honesty, respect, self-control, equality, and care and concern for others. As a busy, diverse community, there is also a particular emphasis on the appreciation of cultures and personal histories–students’ own as well as those of others–and an openness to differing perspectives, values, and traditions.