Our teachers are all state-certified, we meet all state requirements and upon graduation you will receive a diploma issued by the state of Iowa. Our classes adhere to state guidelines, so you’ll take the same amount of science, language arts, mathematics, social studies, etc., as any student in the public school system. We also offer electives like music, art, industrial technology, family & consumer sciences, business, Spanish, agriculture and more. We even offer Advanced Placement (AP) courses. Read our course descriptions for all the details.
We offer more than just great academics. We’re in the business of nurturing the whole person – body, mind and spirit. The approach seems to be working since we consistently outperform state and national averages for standardized tests like the ITEDs and ACTs. It’s hard for us to brag, so we’ll let the numbers speak for themselves. Our class averages rank at the 98th percentile nationally on the Iowa Tests of Educational Development (ITED) and our ACT Composite score is 24.2 while the state average is 22.3.
We believe IMS offers students and families something not found elsewhere:
- Smaller class sizes lead to more one-on-one relationships between teachers and students, and between students even across grade levels
- Bible classes and chapel times provide space for spiritual growth and great discussion
- Our teachers are not only allowed to teach Christianity, they are required to do so
- IMS is consistently described by students as a safe environment where they feel welcomed and accepted
- Teachers and students run into one another outside school hours–at church, in their community, at events, etc.
- Lifelong friendships are formed, and alumni actually look forward to class reunions
- Teachers care about more than just learning inside the classroom; we care about the whole you
- IMS is more than a school; it’s a family (and we’d love to welcome you into it)
But don’t take our word for it–ask students and families about their experiences and then come visit to try us out for yourself!
Absolutely not. We love diversity and welcome students from a wide variety of backgrounds into our community. We represent 18 different churches across 8 denominations. We are 62% Mennonite and 38% non-Mennonite. It’s a great way to learn from one another. We do teach from a Mennonite/Anabaptist viewpoint, but definitely don’t force the Mennonite position on anyone. We only ask the following:
- you’re open to the teachings of Jesus Christ
- you attend daily chapel services
- you take the required Bible courses (1 per year)
For 2016-17, tuition at IMS is $8,725 per year. Tuition for students attending a financially supporting Mennonite church will get a $3,675 discount per year, since additional support comes from those churches. See the breakdown of expenses and payment options on our 2016-17 Entry Fee Forms.
If that doesn’t seem doable to you, don’t give up yet! We have financial aid packages available and are here to work with you to make it possible to attend. In the end, it’ll be well worth your effort.
If you live in Mid-Prairie’s district, they are required to provide busing for you. Outside the MP district, your own transportation must be arranged. We provide transportation from Iowa City and Washington and can also connect you with IMS families in your area for carpooling. You can even submit a reimbursement form to your school district to get at least minimal reimbursement for transportation costs.
IMS students come from 14 school districts, 11 communities and 3 countries. So you won’t be the only one excited to make new friends. Current student Isabel says it best, “I was nervous not knowing anyone, but the other students welcomed me in with such ease that I made friends in no time. And I’m still able to keep in good contact with my friends from my old school. Win-win!” Of course, we think the best solution is to encourage your friends to come with you!
For students attending from a distance, that’s a very real concern although one parent recently mentioned that after the first day of school it suddenly didn’t seem to matter as much simply because of the immediate benefits she saw in her child from attending IMS. Students who carpool together get to know each other well and even look forward to that travel time to begin and end their school day. Local families frequently open their homes to schoolmates traveling from a distance. A late night ballgame combined with an early morning music practice, for example, provides a situation where it makes sense for a student to stay overnight locally on occasion.
Regarding inclement weather and less-than-ideal road conditions: you and your parents have the ultimate say in whether you brave the conditions. We may have school and your parents determine it’s unsafe to travel. In that case you will always receive an excused absence.
Did we miss something? We love curiosity, so don’t be shy. Contact us with all your questions and we’ll be happy to help.