Our Secondary School offers a welcoming, inclusive international experience for students from Grade 6 to Grade 12 in which engaged parents and highly skilled and committed teachers work together to nurture each child’s unique academic and social-emotional learning needs in an environment of quality learning resources and world class facilities.


Our school is a fully authorized International Baccalaureate World School offering the internationally acclaimed IB-Middle Years Programme (MYP) to Grade 6-10 students, and the IB Diploma Programme (IBDP) to Grade 11 and 12 students. Grades 6 to 8 is termed ‘Middle School’ for pastoral purposes while Grade 9 to 12 is termed ‘High School.’ The maximum class size at IST is 22 students, although many classes, especially in the IBDP, are smaller.

Our environment is a happy one in which ‘trust’ is the keyword!


Dear IST Families and Prospective Families,


It is my pleasure to welcome you to the secondary area of the IST website, serving the needs of students from Grade 6 to Grade 12. I am confident in affirming that you have chosen an excellent environment for your child to learn and develop. We are advocates of all that 21st century learning involves; we particularly believe that we must educate students to be flexible learners who know how to develop the right questions.


Our students want to learn but also need to be aware of how they learn. We consider social and emotional learning to be a significant component of our programme.


Our environment is a happy one in which ‘trust’ is the keyword. The facilities are superb and our team of international educators enthusiastic and inspiring. We recognise that students moving to a new country, and often working in an unfamiliar language, face challenges. We are used to helping students make the most of the opportunities here. I look forward to meeting you in the near future.


Warm Regards,


Michael Conway
Secondary Principal & Deputy Director

IST is a fully authorized 3-Programme IB World School that offers the PYP, MYP and DP. Our IB Diploma Programme assures that our students are challenged academically and prepared for entrance into the top colleges and universities throughout the world. Our IB Diploma results demonstrate the caliber and quality of teaching and learning that makes IST the premier international school in Tianjin and one of the best institutions in the region. Download our High School Academic Profile

Our school places students based upon equivalent grade levels completed at their previous school. In addition to the standard IST application forms (which include Form D, a transfer report from the applicant’s current school), copies of progress reports for the past two years are also required. New applicants and their parents are meet with the Secondary Principal, and normally take an English language proficiency assessment to determine what additional language learning support, if any, is required.

Our classes are organized on a 10-day cycle. The school day begins at 8.10AM with a 20 minute ‘Homeroom’ class, before formal classes begin at 08:30AM. There are eight 40-minute periods per day, although most Secondary classes are double 90-minute periods. School finishes at 3.15PM, with the exception of Wednesdays when lessons and the lunch break are condensed to allow for an early finish at 2.15PM. Students have a 20-minute morning recess from 9:45AM to 10:05AM, and a 60-minute lunch break from 1:10PM to 2:10PM.

Once a week (40 minutes) students attend an extended advisory class with their homeroom teacher with the specific purpose of supporting general academics and social emotional skills and needs. Students in Grades 6-8 also attend weekly ‘Approaches to Learning’ lessons that help them navigate standard practices of learning and organization throughout their years of study in the MYP. Grade 10 students are also afforded time to complete their Personal Project, the capstone of the MYP.

Our specialist guidance and college counsellors help to promote the overall wellbeing of Secondary students by offering a comprehensive, preventative, and accessible program of guidance in academic, personal/social, and college and career counseling. Our counselors are always available to meet with students and parents whenever advice and support is needed.

Our dedicated faculty of highly qualified and experienced teachers from around the world, provide high quality teaching and learning across a extensive range of academic subject disciplines. Student learning in our English medium school is further supported by a large team of specialist English Language Acquisition (ELA) and Individual Needs teachers. Teaching Assistants also provide targeted learning support across the curriculum.

Our community is mutually supportive and enthusiastically engaged in all aspects of school life. In addition to routine newsletters and information shared with parents via email and the school website and social media platforms, our school also provides students and parents with direct access to general course information, assignments and marks for summative assessments through ‘ManageBac’, our online curriculum management system. Additionally, teachers use Microsoft ‘Teams’ to facilitate effective communication, collaboration and learning with students.



Balance in the various aspects of children’s lives is important, and our students are therefore provided with multiple opportunities to engage in different forms of learning beyond the traditional subject disciplines, including:

  • Single day and week-long ‘Week Without Walls’ excursions to fascinating locations in Tianjin and elsewhere in China
  • Performing Arts (e.g., choirs, ensembles and orchestra, and musical and dramatic productions)
  • Athletics (individual and team participation in a range of sporting activities in both local and regional leagues, including ISCOT, ISAC, and ACAMIS)
  • A wide range of other Co-Curricular Activities (CCAs, offered every day after school)
  • Student Leadership (e.g., Student Council)
  • Community and Service (e.g., Action Groups, Literacy Lab, and Media at IST)

Excursions and most CCAs are provided at no additional cost to parents.


IST boasts Tianjin’s largest international school campus with 7.2 hectares of park-like grounds and over 30,000m2 of architecturally designed, purpose-built facilities. The Secondary School is housed in the magnificent ‘Han’ Building for all academic activities other than Design and Technology, Visual Art, and Physical Education. Han facilities include: the Library, Literacy Lab, and Media Center; the 520 seat Han Theater, Black Box, and Music Suites; 4 dedicated Science Laboratories; recreational spaces and lounges, including the Student Center and Deli Marche Café; and numerous general subject classrooms. The Han Building is linked by walkways to the Qin Building, which includes state-of-the-art Design and Technology and Visual Arts Suites; the Gymnasium and Fitness Center; and a Medical Clinic. The school also has extensive grounds, including a high quality 400m running track and fully sized and 7-aside soccer fields.

12 - 16 years Grades 6 - 10
17 - 19 years Grades 11 - 12

Key resources

Brochure Secondary
IST Profile 2023-24