Frequently Asked Questions

French Immersion

For students entering preschool and kindergarten, NO French is required. Beginning in 1st grade, some command of French is necessary. Non-native speakers will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

Many of our preschool and kindergarten students do not speak or understand any French when they start school. Beginning on the first day, our teachers introduce students to the French language through everyday activities, including games, stories, songs and play.

Children’s natural capacity to learn and adapt means they will quickly begin to understand French, though some will take longer than others to feel comfortable speaking. Although children are encouraged to speak French in the classroom to teachers and each other, they are always able to express themselves and be understood in English. In addition, our native French-speaking students are encouraged to help and support their non-French-speaking friends.

Language is acquired most effectively when it is learned in a meaningful social context, such as school. Through immersion, our students learn French as they learned their mother tongue: in a nurturing environment, with lots of encouragement, plenty of gentle repetition, and physical cues as needed.


Most children will understand some French after just a few months. Some will begin experimenting with speaking right away, and others, though they may understand, will wait longer to speak until they feel more comfortable with the language.

In Kindergarten, English Language Arts is taught for around 4 hours per week. In 1st to 3rd grades, students spend about 30 % of their time with English-speaking teachers and 70% with French-speaking teachers. Students in 4th and 5th grades spend 50% of their time with English-speaking teachers and 50% with French-speaking teachers. Students study some subjects, such as math, in both languages. By the end of 1st grade, the vast majority of our students are conversant French speakers, with age-appropriate literacy skills in both French and English.


We offer after school care for our elementary students (starting in kindergarten). Learn more here.

Elementary school (K through 5th): 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Preschool: 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Yes! All elementary students have class time each week for music, visual arts, and STEM. They also have dedicated time for physical education and to visit the school library with their class.

Currently, we offer morning preschool only. If you need full time care, talk to our admissions coordinator

Please note: All children must be fully potty-trained prior to starting preschool.


For students entering preschool and kindergarten, NO French is required. Beginning in 1st grade, some command of French is necessary. Non-native speakers will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

North Seattle French School follows the French system to determine grade level according to date of birth. To start school, students must reach the following age requirements by December 31 of the same year:

Preschool: 3 years old
Kindergarten: 5 years old
1st Grade: 6 years old
and so on for each subsequent grade.

For example, students who turn 5 in November may start kindergarten in September.

Please note: All children must be fully potty-trained prior to starting preschool.

Yes. Siblings of current students receive a 10% tuition discount and have admissions priority. Siblings are not automatically accepted; all applicants must complete the full admissions process.

It’s a good idea to start looking at schools in the fall for the following school year. Our priority application deadline is in March. To ensure your child has a spot for the upcoming school year, we highly recommend applying before the March deadline.  We continue to accept applications on a rolling basis and we accept students mid-year.

Tuition Assistance

Elementary school families who have thoroughly reviewed their financial situation, including all sources of income, and feel they need help paying tuition are encouraged to apply. (We do not currently offer financial aid for preschool.) Aid is issued as a grant; there is no repayment obligation.

No. Financial aid applications are considered separately from admissions applications.

Please contact our admissions coordinator to schedule a tour of the school before applying for financial assistance.

NSFS uses FAST, an online service of the Independent School Management Association, to help determine financial aid. FAST calculates the demonstrated need amount for each family based on gross income, nontaxable income, assets, liabilities, family size, and the number of children in tuition-paying schools below the college level, among other factors. Using FAST ensures confidentiality and equal consideration to all applicants.

The NSFS Financial Aid Committee determines awards based on the FAST demonstrated need information together with the amount of financial aid available and the number of families applying for aid in a given year.

The application is entirely online, through our school’s FAST link above.

The final deadline is early in March for the following school year, but it is advisable to begin the FAST application as early as possible. Please begin your FAST application early to see exactly what documentation is needed. Please contact our Operations Manager at for any questions.

All adults in the custodial household will be asked to provide documentation including but not limited to:

  • complete tax return for the most recent year
  • mortgage statement or rental agreement
  • child support documentation (if applicable)
  • W2 and/or 1099 for all jobs worked, and/or Social Security, unemployment or disability stubs if you are a recipient
  • IRS form 4506T (Request for Transcript of Tax Form) (available on the FAST website)
  • current credit report (NEW applicants only; available at no charge at

NSFS considers both parents or partners responsible for the educational expenses of their child(ren), regardless of marital status or the existence of legal documents stating otherwise. Therefore, separated or divorced partners must both complete tuition assistance applications. Please contact our Operations Manager at if you have questions about specific circumstances.

While we are very glad to be able to offer tuition assistance, we cannot guarantee that we will have funds to meet every applicant’s demonstrated need. The maximum amount we can offer this year is 45% of tuition.

While we anticipate the bulk of available funds will be allocated to applicants who submit by the March deadline, we may have available and/or additional grant funds later in the year. We encourage you to apply if needed even after the deadline. Make sure to contact our admission coordinator for a virtual tour of the school before applying for financial assistance.

If we receive completed applications with all necessary forms by the March deadline, you will receive a tuition assistance decision letter in April.

Yes, aid is determined every year for one year only. However, if there are no significant changes to your financial situation, it is likely that comparable aid will be offered each year.

We are here to work with all of our families. Please notify our Operations Manager right away if your family’s financial situation changes unexpectedly:

Scroll to Top