Our School’s History

Facts & History

Istanbul International Community School (IICS) is one of Europe’s most noteworthy independent schools. IICS is an independent, co-educational day school, offering a full IB program from pre-kindergarten through grade 12 for international students (holders of non- Turkish passports). Founded in 1911, it is one of the oldest international schools in the world.

With nearly 100 years of academic excellence, IICS offers impressive facilities, a friendly environment, engaged and enthusiastic students, and an involved parent body.

  • 1911

    IICS

    The Robert College Community School (RCCS) was formally founded in 1911 to provide education

    for the children of Robert College’s foreign faculty members. Though 1911 is the official

    establishment date of RCCS, it is said to have existed informally for many years prior to this date.

    In either case, this makes it one of the oldest, international schools in the world. There is no

    existing record of where the school was located in 1911, though it is thought to have been in

    Anderson Hall, on the campus of what is now Bosphorus University.

  • 1914

    IICS

    The school was closed during World War I.

    1914

  • 1919

    IICS

    The school began accepting all international students in Istanbul.

  • 1939

    IICS

    The school was closed for the duration of World War II.

    1939

  • 1945

    IICS

    Under the newly established republic, the school received permission from the Turkish Ministry

    of Education to establish a primary school for the children of foreign nationals.

  • 1955

    IICS

    The school was temporarily closed.

    1955

  • 1958

    IICS

    The school moved to its main building in Rumeli Hisarı.

  • 1960

    IICS

    The school expanded to include grades 1-8

    1960

  • 1979

    IICS

    RCCS formally separated from Robert College and changed its name to the Istanbul Community

    School.

  • 1980

    IICS

    A volunteer governing board of parents was created and convened for the first time in March

    1980

    1980

  • 1985

    IICS

    The schools name was officially changed to the Istanbul International Community School (IICS).

    On December 18th, the main building of the school burned down (no one was injured). This

    main building had been the childhood residence of the first full-time editor of National

    Geographic Magazine, Gilbert Hovey Grosvenor, whose father once taught at Robert College.

    Following the loss of the main building, IICS acquired what was later known as “the Corner

    House” and “the Kuran Building”. IICS also constructed prefabricated classrooms on the site of

    the main building, which were used until the Marmara Campus was built.

  • 1987

    IICS

    IICS received permission from the Turkish government to form a corporation.

    1987

  • 1989

    IICS

    IICS’s incorporation was granted permission to operate a school for foreign nationals under the

    supervision of the Government Planning Organization.

  • 1991

    IICS

    Headmistress Carol Fonger retired and new Headmaster Ken Hillman took over.

    1991

  • 1996

    IICS

    Due to considerable growth, plans for a second, purpose-built campus were made.

  • 1997

    IICS

    IICS was authorized by the IB to offer the Middle Years Program for grades 7-10. This made IICS

    one of the first schools in the world authorized for all three of the IB programs.

    IICS was internationally accredited by the Council of International Schools (CIS).

    1997

  • 1998

    IICS

    IICS’s; first class of grade 12 students graduated.

  • 1999

    IICS

    IICS opened its 16 hectare Marmara Campus, located 25 miles west of the city center amid

    rolling hills, overlooking Buyukcekmece lake. The IICS Marmara Campus serves students from 3-

    18 years old (grades PK-12). The Hisar Campus continued to serve students from 3-9 years old

    (grades PK-3).

    1999

  • 2001

    IICS

    Headmaster Luis Alfonso took over for Ken Hillman.

  • 2002

    IICS

    IICS was internationally accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges,

    making it the only PK-12 international school in Istanbul globally recognized by European and

    American accrediting organizations.

    2002

  • 2004

    IICS

    IICS joined the Central and Eastern European Schools Association (CEESA).

  • 2005

    IICS

    Headmaster Jeremy Lewis took over for Luis Alfonso.

    2005

  • 2007

    IICS

    IICS was re-authorized by IB.

  • 2008

    IICS

    IICS was re-accredited by CIS and NEASC.

    2008

  • 2009

    IICS

    After increasing enrollment by 30% from 2004-2009, IICS expanded the Marmara campus,

    constructing a new gym and multipurpose building, a new art atelier building on the south

    lawn, expanded the library to nearly double the size, designed a new centrally located college

    counseling office, and created a new secondary student lounge.

  • 2010

    IICS

    Headmaster Peter Welch took over for Jeremy Lewis.

    Due to steadily increasing enrolment and the need for additional classrooms, IICS constructed

    early childhood center for Preschool and Prep classes on the south lawn.

    IICS launched a 1-to-1 laptop program in August 2010 which provides each student in grades 6-12

    with a free netbook computer to use. All classrooms on both campuses were outfitted with data

    projectors. Many classrooms were also outfitted with interactive whiteboards.

    2010

ADMISSIONS

Moving to a new school and a new country is a major change. Our Director of Admissions at Istanbul International Community School, Suzy Gurkan, is happy to answer your questions about IICS, about living in Istanbul, relocation, or any of your schooling concerns.
Email admissions@iics.k12.tr

APPLY HERE

Hisar Campus

Rumelihisari Mahallesi,
Nafi Baba Sokak, No:6
Hisarustu / Istanbul 34470
TURKEY

Telephone +90 212 287 2770
Fax +90 212 265 0580
Email info@iics.k12.tr

Marmara Campus

Karaagac Koyu Mahallesi,
Kahraman Caddesi, 27/1
Hadimkoy / Istanbul 34500
TURKEY

Telephone +90 212 857 8264
Fax +90 212 857 8270
Email info@iics.k12.tr