About IDS

Welcome from Head of School

Dear Families,

On a rainy Wednesday morning, 161 pre-school, elementary and middle school students sit quietly in IDS’s gorgeous Galluzzo Theater, anticipating the power point presentation of an 8th grade girl. There is a technology glitch, but even the 3 year-olds are calm and ready to hear what this student learned about cerebral palsy. It’s All-School Meeting at The Independent Day School, a weekly ritual for the school’s student, faculty, and parent community. As I sit, scanning the crowd, I reflect how much I would have loved to attend a school like this one. And then it dawns on me: not only do I get to be part of a school like IDS, I get to lead it!

When you enter the 33-acre rural campus of The Independent Day School, you’ll notice a sign: “Slow down! Future leaders at work and play!” The location of the sign should not go unnoticed: it’s next to a speed bump. At IDS, we anticipate and welcome these speed bumps, and recognize that the learning that happens through failure is often more powerful than what is learned through success. In these pre-school, elementary and middle school years, we help our students develop the academic skills and the confidence to succeed in their next phase. We understand that resilience, grit, and endurance to face any bumps in their future are elements that are equally important. How do we do it? Caring adults who know their students, with their heads and their hearts, surround each child so that their potential is unlocked.

What will your future 8th grader present at All-School Meeting? How will they embrace our quest to be fearless in their learning? Come find out how IDS prepares its students to create their future with confidence, curiosity and compassion.

Marijke Kehrhahn
Head of School
    • Marijke Kehrhahn

      Marijke Kehrhahn

Student Testimonial

    • Olivia H.

      Olivia H.

Olivia H. Class of 2014

There are so many opportunities here at IDS -- music, performing arts and athletics and I’ve been able to experience all of them. Initially, I went to the public school in my town but I found that many of the students weren’t really interested in expanding their knowledge and learning new things. When I first came to IDS, it felt very natural. The community is very welcoming so I didn’t feel out of place. The only subject I was nervous about was Spanish since I had never studied it before. All the kids at IDS had Spanish class since pre-K. My teacher, Sra. Dwyer ,was great and very organized and she got me a tutor so I quickly caught on.

One of the best aspects of IDS is the relationships you build with your teachers. Mrs. Ficke has been my advisor, my coach and my English teacher so we’ve had many interactions. If I ever have a problem, I go to her and she listens. There’s no barrier.

Science class is very hands on. When we conduct a lab there’s an opportunity to search more about the thing we’vefound so there’s a broader opportunity. I don’t think many science programs are like this one.

I’d say fearless learning is not being afraid to take a risk. Audition for a play. Answer a question in class even if you’re not sure you’re right. There’s really no reason why you shouldn’t be fearless.