Who can attend, and what do you look for in a student?
Khan Lab School currently serves students ages 5-15+ in Lower School, Middle School, and Upper School at our campus in Mountain View, California.
We are looking for students who are excited to take an active role in their education and for parents who hope to support their children in becoming lifelong learners. The recruitment goal is to bring together families who are committed to the learning community and will contribute to it in any number of ways. KLS seeks to create a racially and economically diverse group of learners, representative of the community we are a part of, in order to facilitate cross-cultural communication and broaden the worldviews of students.
Transcripts will be reviewed to ensure a level of academic proficiency that will allow students to be successful. Applicants to the Lower School are not evaluated based on test scores. We look for students who are exceptionally curious, excited to create something out of nothing, who thrive in an exploratory setting, and who are eager to lead, teach, and collaborate with their peers. We are looking for families who want to be part of discovering and implementing new education models and who bring valuable experiences and resources to the school community.
Is there a waiting list?
Our waiting pool is not a sequential list. Students who apply and are not admitted due to inadequate space are automatically placed in the waiting pool. Students will be admitted based on maintaining a balanced school population. Spots are filled on a rolling basis whenever a space opens up for a new term. We will contact you using the phone number or email listed on your application if a spot opens up.
Although our school is coeducational, we receive many questions specific to female applicants throughout our admissions process. In an effort to address these questions in a meaningful way, we have created resources for families of girls. Click here to read about how our model of education empowers girls.
How is your model of education different from the traditional model of education?
Please visit "Why Khan Lab School?" to view a chart outlining our main points of differentiation.
What subjects do you teach?
Our curriculum is intended to prepare students for success and is continuously revised to remain relevant. Students begin with a strong foundation in reading, writing, math, and digital literacy. The KLS Graduate Profile guides our expectations for what students should be able to do or show by the time they graduate from our school. This includes a personal passion project, cognitive skills, and demonstration of character strengths.
How long is the school day?
Our school day lasts from 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., since every student may stay for Extended Day from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. and our flexible drop-off is from 8:30 to 9:00 a.m. Our core school day takes place from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.
How long is the school year?
We have school throughout the year with breaks spread out over 12 months. Please view our public calendar to see the scheduled breaks for the current school year. These breaks typically include a Thanksgiving break, a long winter holiday, a mid-winter break, spring break, an early summer vacation, and a late summer vacation. Since students are at the center of the learning experience at KLS, we've created our extended year schedule with students' health, wellness, and optimal learning in mind.
What is the tuition?
We list our annual tuition information for the Lower, Middle, and Upper School programs on our Admissions page.
What are Independence Levels, and how do they work?
At Khan Lab School, we have Independence Levels and mixed-age activities instead of traditional grade levels. This means that instead of grouping students by age and date cut-offs, we group them by level of independence as well as in flexible academic groups. Students get as much structure and support as they need to learn at their optimal pace.
To transition to the next Independence Level, a student must advocate for his/her own promotion.
What does it mean to be a "lab school"?
Please see "What is a lab school?" for more information.
What is personalized learning?
At KLS, "personalized learning" means that each student’s education is developed and shaped by the student, working with our team. Whenever possible, the education experience is customized to the student’s academic path and pace. We leverage blended learning as an important tool in an effective personalized strategy.
What is blended learning?
Blended learning happens when a portion of instruction is delivered via digital/online media with some element of student control over time, place, path, or pace. Essentially, a portion of the traditional face-to-face classroom experience is replaced by educational web tools such as Khan Academy, in order to provide students with a more personalized and self-paced learning experience. At KLS, the use of blended learning tools is always enhanced by guidance from an Advisor or Content Specialist.
What is project-based learning?
Project-based learning (PBL) is a dynamic classroom approach in which students explore real-life, augmented, and virtual contexts to acquire a deeper knowledge of the material at hand. We strongly believe that students learn best when their school experiences have context and are connected to their lives and global affairs. Students spend roughly half their time at KLS learning through projects, often of their own design informed by their Independence Level. All projects are interdisciplinary, and all projects connect to goals within our Graduate Profile (character strengths, cognitive skills, global citizenship, creation, purpose, independence, foundational fluencies, and deeper learning concepts).
Are you a private school?
Yes, Khan Lab School is all of the following: independent school, private school, lab school, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. We are a brick-and-mortar school associated with Khan Academy, and we are located in Mountain View, California (Silicon Valley). Because we are a private school, we are able to experiment with a new model of education, which we are working to make accessible to educators around the world. We view ourselves as a private school with a public purpose, and we are connected to one of the most well-respected education non-profits in the world.
Are you a gifted school?
No, we do not consider ourselves to be a gifted school. We admit students of differing academic abilities.
Are you an online or virtual school?
No. We are a school located in Mountain View, California, and we require physical attendance.
Can students accelerate to a higher grade level faster at KLS than at a traditional school?
We have Independence Levels instead of traditional grade levels. Our students are able to master content at their own pace, but we do not rush to accelerate them. The program is designed so that students will stay in the same Independence Level for more than one calendar year.
Who does well at KLS?
Families who understand our model and believe in our vision, and students who are interested in being part of a pioneering lab school community.
In addition, we are always looking for students who embody aspects of our Graduate Profile (which all students embody by the time they graduate): Character Strengths, Cognitive Skills, Global Citizenship, Creation, Purpose, and Independence.
For applicants, we are looking for learners who can jump in with the same level of independence that we expect of students who have gone through our program.
What support can KLS provide if my student has a 504 plan or IEP?
While we will work within our capacity to support students and their learning needs, as a private school that does not receive federal funds, we are not legally obligated to offer accommodations.
If a student comes to KLS with a 504 or IEP or has documentation of a learning difference (from a qualified medical or mental health professional) that would impact the student’s education, the student’s KLS team (may include Division Head, Lead Advisor, Content Specialist(s), and School Counselor) may meet to develop a Student Learning Plan (SLP) to document possible accommodations and goals (if applicable). If an SLP is needed, it will be developed by the student’s KLS team with input from the student’s parent(s) (and, student, when applicable). The student’s KLS team will review the SLP at least twice per school year and provide feedback to parent(s) and student as needed and appropriate.
Do you have a hot lunch program?
Yes. Families have the option to order hot lunch online each month from a menu of kid-friendly options. At least one vegetarian meal is available to choose each day, and meals include an entrée plus a side of fresh fruits and vegetables, with the option to order milk as well. We work with a family-owned company that provides locally sourced organic food from farms (not factories), helping to promote the farm-to-school movement.
Do you have sports?
Yes, although we are not currently part of an independent school league. We work with GrowFit to provide athletic options on campus during Extended Day, including Basketball, Cross Country, and Volleyball. We also offer Dance and other physical activities during Extended Day in addition to our Physical Education and Wellness programs during the core school day.
Do you have a summer school?
We are a 12-month school, and we don’t currently have summer programs available for students who do not attend our school full-time. For the weeks when students and teachers are on vacation, our Parent Association maintains a database of local and overnight camp opportunities.
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