What is the significance of the name The Geneva School?
The Geneva School is named for the city of Geneva, Switzerland, which played a pivotal role in the Protestant Reformation in the 1500s. The transforming effect of the Reformation was felt throughout the city of Geneva, which in turn wielded cultural, social, religious, educational, and political influence over its region and over other parts of Europe. Christian classical education flourished there and contributed to the changes brought about by the Reformation. The city of Geneva adopted as its official motto the expression post tenebras lux (“after darkness, light”) as a testimony to the transformation that God had brought about.
At its founding, the Board of The Geneva School adopted the name Geneva and post tenebras lux as the motto of our official crest. It is our goal to foster the growth of the Christian classical movement, so that its transformative effects will be as enduring and widespread as was the city of Geneva.
Is The Geneva School accredited?
The Geneva School is accredited by the Florida Council of Independent Schools (FCIS) and the Florida Kindergarten Council (FKC). FCIS is a professional educational association that was founded in 1954 by a group of independent private school leaders in order to promote high standards for non-public schools. It is one of the nation’s largest organizations of independent schools, evaluating and accrediting its 159 member schools which enroll over 73,000 students . FKC, founded in 1968, is a member of the Florida Association of Academic Nonpublic Schools (FAANS) and has been recognized as an official evaluating and accrediting organization for the nonpublic early childhood schools in Florida.
Is Geneva affiliated with a particular denomination?
No, Geneva is an independent school, not affiliated with any church or denomination.
Do you have to be Christian to attend Geneva?
While being a Christian is not a requirement for entrance to Geneva, about 90% of our students attend a Christian church regularly.
Do you have chapel?
All grammar school students attend weekly chapel services and our middle and high school students attend bi-weekly chapel. On the week they do not have chapel our 7-12th graders meet in their discipleship/life groups with their faculty mentor.
What textbooks or curriculum does Geneva use?
Geneva’s curricular objectives are determined not by publishing companies, but by what comports best with the western liberal arts tradition—the humanities, mathematics, and the sciences—and with the fine and performing arts. We employ the best texts, materials, and resources that we can find in order to accomplish these objectives. For more information about the Grammar School curriculum, please consult our Grammar School Curriculum Objectives; and for the Dialectic and Rhetoric Schools, please consult the Dialectic and Rhetoric Academic Handbook.
What elective courses do you offer to high school students?
One of the most outstanding characteristics of the western liberal arts tradition is its broad and deep canon (a list of definitive writings; in this case those that are definitive of the western tradition) from which our curriculum is drawn. In our judgment, the diversification and development of individual giftedness and interests that is accomplished by means of electives is secondary to exploring this broad and deep foundation. Beyond the rigors of the canon for The Geneva School, there are a number of elective opportunities. We offer electives in yearbook and in the fine and performing arts. We offer a number of elective opportunities in classical and modern languages after basic language requirements have been met. Four math credits and three science credits are required for graduation from among a number of available options; anything taken beyond those is elective. For further information, please consult our Dialectic and Rhetoric Academic Handbook.
Do you offer Honors and AP courses?
Yes. Many of the courses offered to students in the Rhetoric School (grades 9–12) are at the honors or AP level. We also offer honors geometry to students in eighth grade. For more detailed information on the courses offered to students in the dialectic and rhetoric school, please see the Dialectic and Rhetoric Academic Handbook.
My high school child is looking to transfer to Geneva. Will (s)he be able to meet Geneva’s graduation requirements?
In many instances, if a student comes in from an academically rigorous college preparatory and/or a liberal arts preparatory curriculum, the answer is generally “yes.” Over the last number of years we have done our best to accommodate students who have come in from good educations elsewhere, but which do not conform to our “classical distinctive requirements”—especially with regard to the teaching of logic, Latin, philosophy, theology, and rhetoric—thus still allowing them to graduate from The Geneva School. The closer one is to graduation, the more difficult it is to make accommodation. All of our graduates, however, need to meet or exceed the requirements for Florida Bright Futures Scholarship, which we believe to be the bare minimum.
My child is an incoming seventh or eighth grader but has never studied Latin. What, if anything, should (s)he do to catch up?
Latin is taught at Geneva using a unified curriculum that is begun in fourth grade and continues through Latin I and II in the seventh and eighth grade, respectively. Typically, rising seventh graders at Geneva will have completed approximately 25% of the curriculum, with the remaining 75% covered during seventh and eighth grade. Therefore, students who enter The Geneva School in seventh grade will need Latin remediation over the summer. Incoming eighth graders with no prior Latin will either take the same Latin course that an incoming seventh grader would take or will begin language study in ninth grade with an ancient or modern language.
What foreign languages does Geneva offer?
Students at Geneva study Greek in 3rd grade and Latin in grades 4–8. In addition, French, Spanish, Latin, and Greek are regularly offered in grades 9–12.
Why do you teach Latin?
Geneva School’s rationale for learning classical languages is very simple: we learn classical languages in order to be able to read literature written in them. This is, in the final analysis, the most compelling reason to learn these languages. Other potential benefits also exist: better standardized test scores in their language components; a deeper understanding of English vocabulary, some 60% of which is directly or indirectly derived from Latin; a firm foundation for the study of modern languages, particularly the Romance languages. Ultimately, however, our goal for Latin at Geneva is to read Augustine, Vergil, Horace, and other authors in their own words.
Why read classical authors at all? Most published works go out of print quickly and permanently. The many classical works that have survived are still with us because of their depth, timelessness and artistry in style, in thought, and in content. When we read classical literature, we are able to enter directly into a “dialogue” with some of the wisest souls and most fertile minds that God has given us. When we read such literature in its original language, we do so without the interface from translators. Because God is merciful and delights to give good gifts to his children, we can only be made better by having done it.
For a more in-depth discussion of Geneva’s philosophy of language and literature, we recommend a paper written by Edward Chandler entitled Why Classical Languages?
To which grades do you teach Latin?
Students gain an introduction to classical languages in third grade via the Greek language. Latin studies begin in fourth grade and continue as a required course through the eighth grade. Latin in grades 4–6 emphasizes acquisition of vocabulary and an introduction to the case system and verb conjugations. Graded Latin readings are also undertaken in order to develop reading fluency. Grades 7 and 8 (Latin I and II, respectively) refines the student’s understanding of Latin even more, through an extensive graded reading, further expanding the student’s vocabulary and giving the opportunity to discuss in more depth various important aspects of Latin syntax.
Latin electives through AP Latin (Latin III–VI) are also available depending on demand. These electives focus on an in-depth reading of various Latin authors from a variety of genres.
What colleges or universities have The Geneva School students chosen to attend following graduation?
Each year, our seniors are accepted to a broad range of schools, including some very prestigious colleges and universities (e.g., Duke, Notre Dame, UVA, Vanderbilt, Davidson, Furman, Middlebury, and Wheaton). In making their college decisions, Geneva students do their research, talk with their parents, receive guidance from our college counselor, and visit their top choices. Each Geneva graduate confidently attends the college or university that is the best academic, spiritual, geographic, and social fit for that particular individual.
Note: Please see The Geneva School Profile for a full list of schools of acceptance.
What technology is available to your students?
Our grammar school students regularly use computers in their classrooms for special projects. Our middle school and high school students have access to laptops that may be used for school purposes.
What is your philosophy regarding homework?
The majority of learning takes place in the classroom. Our teachers assign homework to reinforce classroom lessons. We generally give 10 minutes of homework per grade level. A 5th grader should ideally have 50 minutes of homework, four/five nights a week. There are many factors that influence the amount of homework a student will have including time management, project planning and how quickly a student works.
What sports and other co-curricular activities do you offer?
In addition to many ad hoc clubs that meet during the school year, Geneva offers the following co-curricular activities:
- Athletics: Geneva offers a full athletic program for students in grades pre-K–12. Geneva competes in the Florida High School Athletic Association and fields 14 varsity sports for men and women. Many of these teams have JV or middle school components. In the lower school students in pre-K to 6th grade have a full and varied number of instructional and competitive sports options.
- The Geneva Consortium: An after-school music program hosted by The Geneva School, designed to provide students with opportunities to expand their musical horizons by participating in musical ensembles and/or private lessons.
- Merely Players: Drama Club for students in grades 6–12
- National Honor Society (NHS)
- Dialectic Round Table and Rhetoric Round Table (Geneva’s student leadership bodies)
- Yearbook (an elective course)
What is the length of the school day for Pre-K and Kindergarten students?
Pre-K: 8:30 am–1:30 pm. (For the first two weeks of school, Pre-K students are dismissed at 12:30 pm.)
Kindergarten: 8:30 am–2:30 pm. (For the first two weeks of school, Kindergarten students are dismissed at 1:00 pm.)
Do you offer aftercare? If so, how does it work?
Aftercare is offered to students in grades pre-K–6 until 5:30 pm. Click here for more detailed information on the Aftercare program.
What kinds of field trips do your students go on?
Field trips are integral to Geneva’s ideal of an incarnational and experiential education. The best education appeals to all five senses. To experience on some level what they are studying will contribute more substantively to the students’ learning than merely reading something in a book or acting something out in a classroom.
Overnight field trips include:
- 5th grade: 5 day trip to Williamsburg
- 6th grade: 3 day camping retreat
- 7th grade: 5 day science excursion to north Florida
- 8th grade: 4 day trip to Boston
- 9th–12th grade: 3 day retreat at the beginning of the school year
- 9th grade: 5 day marine biology camping trip to the Florida Everglades
- 10th-12th grade: periodic European study trips
Students in the Grammar School participate in age-appropriate, curriculum-related field trips and in-school events. For more detailed information on the overnight field trip schedule offered to students in grades 5–12, please visit the lower school field trip page and the upper school field trip page.
How many students are there in each class?
Pre-K: Ideally limited to 14 per class
Kindergarten: Ideally limited to 16 per class
1st-12th grades: Ideally limited to 18 per class
How many students attend Geneva?
We have approximately 460 students in grade pre-K through 12th grade. Our middle school and high school have on average a total of 180 students.
Does Geneva have programs for children with special needs/learning disabilities (ADHD, Asperger Syndrome, etc.)?
Geneva does not currently have programs in place to accommodate children with significant special needs/learning disabilities. However, if a child’s condition is mild in nature it may be possible for them to succeed at Geneva. Please call our Director of Admission to discuss your child’s individual needs.
At what age can my child begin attending Geneva?
Our youngest children are Pre-K students.
Pre-K: Children must be 4 years old by September 1
Kindergarten: Children must be 5 years old by September 1.
Please note that all students applying to Geneva will be assessed in order to determine their readiness for the grade for which they are applying. Please refer to the Apply Now page.
Does Geneva offer tuition assistance?
The Geneva School offers tuition assistance to families who qualify according to the criteria established by Financial Aid for School Tuition (FAST; a third party assessment company). This determination is made with regard to a family’s entire financial picture, irrespective of how many children are enrolled at Geneva. For information on Geneva’s scholarship program, click here.
Do you offer a discount for families with multiple students? No, but we do have a very generous scholarship plan and families that have more than one child attending Geneva have a greater chance of qualifying depending on a family’s financial situation. For more information about Geneva’s scholarship program, click here.
I know Geneva has purchased 52 acres to build a new campus. When will the new school be built?
There is no definitive time table established by the Board of Governors at this time. The land has been fully purchased; the architectural and engineering plans have been completed and approved by the City of Casselberry. As we move into the next phase of the project the construction schedule will depend upon the generosity and success of the continuing capital campaign.