The International School of Lausanne was originally founded in 1962 to meet the needs of Lausanne’s English-speaking community. What was then called the English School of Lausanne opened with seven students in the rehearsal rooms of the Municipal Theatre. The following year the School was renamed The Commonwealth-American School growing within five years to over 100 students from 9 different countries. The school was finally renamed the International School of Lausanne (ISL) in 1997.
In its fifty-five year history, the International School of Lausanne has grown not only in size – enrolment now stands at close to 900 students representing more than 60 nationalities - but also in scope. In order to serve an increasingly mobile international community, the curriculum gradually evolved away from its original British and American focus to take into consideration the practices and requirements of a wide number of other educational systems. The International Baccalaureate (IB) was introduced in 2000 to reflect the multicultural outlook of the community. ISL is now a full IB school offering the Primary Years Programme (PYP), Middle Years Programme (MYP) and Diploma Programme (DP) programmes.
In 1998, the Board created a task force to locate land and commission the design of a new purpose-built campus in Le Mont-sur-Lausanne, which was completed in August 2005. In 2007, 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 Campus 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 openness to differing perspectives, values and traditions.