Welcome to Seattle Country Day School (SCDS), a warm, welcoming school for gifted children, grades K–8. We’d like to answer a few questions that arise for parents as they search for a new school. If you have additional questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to our admissions team.
How can I tell if my child is gifted? Gifted children are part of every community, race, and social class, but they sometimes go unrecognized. Gifted children often display curiosity, intensity, a drive to learn, enjoyment in playing with ideas, and the ability to pull together concepts, make associations, recognize patterns, and note disparities.
Is admission based on giftedness? Yes, in part. The school requires that children take the WISC IQ test, and their score serves as a basic metric (but not the only metric) for admission. Read more about the admissions-application process and IQ testing.
Will SCDS provide a welcoming, inclusive community for my child? Absolutely. We want children to bring their entire selves to school, and we help foster their development through a program called Synapse. Synapse, which combines social-emotional learning (SEL) and DEI-related concepts, allows children to learn more about themselves, their families, and the world around them. More generally, we’d like you to know that SCDS places a high priority on diversity, equity, and inclusion, and these values are reflected throughout our school, from our admissions process to our curriculum.
Can my family afford SCDS? If you think SCDS is out of reach for your family, please reconsider. SCDS provides generous, need-based financial aid packages, and financial aid will be available in the 2024–25 school year. Our financial aid program supports other school expenses, including bus service, lunch, and overnight trips.
What will my child experience in class? Classes at SCDS are small, and teachers are dedicated to their subjects and their students. What really sets our close-knit, welcoming campus apart, however, is our focus on guided inquiry-based learning. All courses at SCDS are taught using inquiry, which uses students’ natural curiosity to challenge them As a result, teachers shape their classes around series of questions that puzzle and stimulate students, rather than around rote learning and textbooks — neither of which we employ.
What about arts, sports, and other activities? SCDS has a vibrant arts program and a sports program that includes basketball, cross-country, soccer, tennis, track, ultimate frisbee, and girls’ volleyball. Our Extended Day after-school program offers additional classes.
Can my child transfer in for Middle School? Yes! SCDS’s Middle School, grades 6–8, welcomes new students and provides deeper opportunities for learning and leadership. Your child will have access to dozens of electives, find teachers who will stimulate their interest in learning, and make good friends. (Children are welcome to transfer to SCDS in any grade; grades K–2 and 4–6 are common entry points.)
What transportation options do you offer? SCDS offers bus service to South Seattle, West Seattle, the Eastside, the Madison Park/Capitol Hill area, and North Seattle. Some families employ carpooling, too.
How does SCDS prepare my child for the future? Inquiry-based learning and Synapse form the educational core of our school, and our goal is to graduate lifelong learners and creative, empathetic problem-solvers. More immediately, our graduates consistently attend great high schools and colleges.
Students consider — in Synapse and in other classes —
questions related to identity and belonging.
We are extremely happy with SCDS…I think all the faculty and staff are wonderful, and my daughter is very happy there.— SCDS Parent