THE AMERICAN COMMUNITY SCHOOL

BEIRUT, LEBANON

(1969 brochure)

Sponsors The American Community School, established ln Beirut, Lebanon in 1905 is an independent institution enrolling both boys and girls from the kindergarten year through grade twelve. Dormitory facilities allow the acceptance of boarding students beginning at the grade seven level.

The school is chartered under the New York State Board of Regents and sponsored by the American University of Beirut, the Commission on Ecumenical Mission and Relations of the United Presbyterian Church, and the Arabian-American Oil Company with its affiliate, the Trans-Arabian Pipe Line Company.

Founding and Aim

The American Community School is a continuation of the Faculty School founded more than fifty years ago to provide education for the children of the American professors of the American University of Beirut, then called the Syrian Protestant College, and the children of the members of the Presbyterian Mission of Lebanon. The first class was graduated in 1911, and the school continued as a day program until 1921 when its name was changed to the American Community School and a boarding department was planned. In the late 1940 s the Arabian-Amerlcan Oil Company became the third sponsor; a grant from them allowed the school to move to its present location and begin the construction of new facilities. Since the relocation in 1950, the enrollment has grown from 116 students to the current student body of more than 850. Planned expansion projects should allow the enrollment to be increased to 1,000 students by September, 1967.

The school of today, although very different from the small mission school of the early 1900 s, continues to believe in the importance of good education and to stress Christian ideals. The rare opportunity to study and work in a highly competitive school while at the same time living in the Middle East with its deep roots of civilization is something that students cherlsh for the remalnder of their lives. The school, whlle proud of Its past, recognizes the great opportunity, responsihility, and challenge of educating the leaders of the future.

Headmaster

The Headmaster and his wife and family live on campus and maintain a close relationship with faculty and students. Mr. and Mrs. Harrison bring to the American Community School a broad educational experience in Europe and the United States. Their two children, Lisa and Jeffrey, attend classes in the elementary school.
Faculty The majority of the American Community School faculty are recruited from public and private schools located throughout the United States, but they are joined by a number of teachers from the Middle East, Europe, Canada, and Australia. All are qualified teachers and over sixty percent have the M.A. degree or its European equivalent. The school's policies of maintaining a low faculty-student ratio (one teścher to thirteen students), of regulating class size and of allowing much professional academic freedom attract highly competent teachers. Although most of the professional staff come to Lebanon for a two year period, the school has a growing proportion of people who remain on a permanent basis.
Students American Community School students come from a rich variety of backgrounds. Because their parents are often professionally involved in commerce and diplomacy, the children have been introduced to a variety of cultures and their extra-curricular experiences have added a dimension to their development which is unique in American education. The majority have been exposed to foreign languages, and many are bilingual. Several of the older students have a working knowledge of three or more languages.

Most of the students at the American Community School are American. There are, however, non-American students whose English language capability is comparable to that of their American counterparts. A few students with limited English ability are accepted in the elementary school.

The benefits of having travelled and lived abroad enable the student to view his environment with a creative and questioning mind. As a result, the student offers an intellectual challenge whlch lays the foundation for a stimulating student-teacher relatlonship.

Admissions Llke many other overseas private schools, the American Com- munity School is unable to provide space for all applicant~. It is advisable that requests for admission at all grade levels be made as early as possible.
Elementary Admissions Admission to a class in the elementary school is dependent upon space available and evidence of grade promotion from an approved school. No provisions are made within the program to accept children with severe handicaps, emotional disturbances, or mental retardation.
Upper School Admissions

For admission to the junior and senior high school, a transcript of the applicant's grades from his former school including the scores of standardized ability and achievement tests must be submitted before an application can be considered. The Secondary School Admission Test is required for entrance to grades nine and ten. (SSAT scores may be waived by the admissions committee if circumstances make it impossible for a student to get to a testing center. If the SSAT is waived for admission purposes, the student must take it the first year he enters A.C.S.).

The admissions committee considers each application and seeks to accept only those students who can qualify academically and socially and who will profit by the school's program

Elementary Program The elementary program is entirely conducted within the new five story building and follows a modern American curriculum. French is taught at all grade levels beginning with the kindergarten year. No class enrolls more than twenty-five students with the average class size remaining at twenty. Specialists in art, music, and physical education assist the regular classroom teacher in enriching the program In these areas. Modern approaches in mathematics, science, and individualized reading, as well as an "internationalized" social studies program prepare the students for transfer to other schools or admission into the A.C.S. upper school. The elementary library, the roof top play area, the playing fields, a large multipurpose room, and the attractive well equipped classrooms are employed by the staff in planning and conducting an excellent and varied program.
Junior High School

Grades seven, eight, and nine form an integrated unit but chare the facilities of the high school building and the modern gymnasium building. All regular class groups are limited to twenty students; the program is completely departmentalized with the students moving from room to room during their seven per~od day. In grades seven and eight, art, music, and physical education are required in addition to the academic courses. French, Spanish or Arabic may be chosen to enrich the program during these years. The grade nine courses, all given for college preparatory credit, are described more fully in the senior high school section. The Junior High student council, newspaper, and literary publication as well as activities, clubs, and assemblies afford the students a complete well-rounded program .
Senior High School The secondary course of study offers only a highly competitive college preparatory program. All classes are limited to twenty students and many are conducted in smaller groups. All students eligible for graduation must have been enrolled at A.C.S. during their junior and senior years. The student normally enrolls for four maior courses and one minor, in addition to required work in physical education. Classes meet for one period of the seven period day, five times a week. Certain science and advanced courses require more periods. The requirements for graduation are listed above the curricula at the end of the brochure
Preparation for class All secondary students are expected to do approximately one hour of daily preparation for each course. Special study halls and tutorials are organized from time to time for students who need additional help. Evening supervised study halls are conducted for all boarding students.
Counseling Office

The counseling office offers students assistance in course selection, placement, remedial help, testing and evaluation, college admissions, and personal problems. An extensive college catalogue library is available, as well as several college guides. Information concerning admission to other private schools both overseas and in the United States can be found. The office has up-to-date material on school and college admission tests and requirements.
Scholarship and Marks Sound scholarship and the development of effective study habits are two obj ectives of the school. A student's schedule is carefully planned with the counselor on the basis of work already done, capacity, and college requirements. A student receives his grades four times a year. After each grading period, marks are discussed with the advisor and analyzed with suggestions for improvement.

At the American Community School any grade lower than a C is not considered as a college recommending grade. Academic warnings are given during each marking period to students who are in danger of receiving unsatisfactory grades. Reports sent home include comments from the teachers. Parents are encouraged to contact the advisor if they have any questions concerning their child's progress or adjustment.

College Acceptances Each year the school graduates a high percentage of students who place in the upper two percent of those who take the National Merit Scholarship tests. One hundred percent of the American Community School graduates are accepted in colleges and universities in the United States or Europe. These statistics reflect on the high calibre of the student who is accepted into the school, and on the ability of the well trained faculty.
Student Government Training in the processes of democratic life and government is one of the school's goals. The foundation of every decision is that students and staff are working together toward a common end. The Student Council and the Grouping Committee are the executive and judicial bodies of student government at the American Community School.
Student Government The President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer of the The Student Student Council are elected by the students of the school, and Council confirmed by the headmaster. Each class is represented by its president at student council meetings.
The Grouping Committee Problems of discipline are handled by the student elected prefects and monitors and thegrouping committee. The grouping committee meets twice monthly to discuss students who have been reported for infractions of school rules. When all sides of a case have been thoroughly reviewed, a decision is reached on the combined judgment of the committee and its faculty advisor. All recommendations of the grouping committee are reviewed by the administration before being put into effect. Students are placed on one of four grouDs depending on their conduct and attitude, and restrictions or special privileges are assigned to individual students.
Prefects and Monitors Prefects and monitors are elected by the students from members of the eleventh and the twelfth grade classes, and confirmed by the headmaster. They normally serve for an entire school year.
International Relations Club Service groups play an important part in life at the American Community School with the International Relations Club sponsoring many worthwhile community activities. Through weekend work camps where students and staff join in community service projects, often in remote villages, the desire to help others is demonstrated. A service fund, collected from student pledges, allows the group to aid a number of worthy causes.
Art Art training is given to students in all grades through the eighth. Students in grades nine through twelve may elect courses in oil painting or art appreciation and art history. A large exhibition of student work is held every spring and attracts many viewers from other schools and the Beirut community at large.
Music Music can be found every where at the American Community Music School from the taped music and strumming of guitars heard in the student lounges to the presentations of the school orchestra and chorus. Students in grades nine through twelve may elect to take music courses, and individual instrumental or voice lessons can be arranged.
Drama Students interested in dramatics may participate in a variety of activities from short assembly skits to major all school productions such as West Side Story which was succesfully presented in the spring of 1966, and Guys ana Dolls presented in 1967. By working with the dramatics program, students may develop not only their dancing, singing, and acting talents but also skill in the technical aspects of the theater, such as makeup, set construction, lighting, and costuming.
Publications The Al Manara yearbook and the monthly Alpha Beth student newspaper give those interested in journalism an opportunity for training and experience in reporting, writing, cartooning, and editing.
Audio-Visual Aids The audio-visual equipment of the school is manned and cared for by students under the supervision of a faculty member. Films, tapes, records, and amplifying equipment are made available through the Audio-Visual Club to teachers and students for classroom use or extra-curricular activltles. Athletics
Athletics In addition to the regular classwork, a required sports program is conducted for both boys and girls. The American Community School gymnasium, outdoor basketball court, tennis courts, and a small playing field provide convenient but limited facilities. The school is also able to use the f acilities at Sports City in Beirut which include Olympic swimming and diving pools, large track and field areas, and tennis courts. Varsity soccer, softball, basketball, wrestling, girls' volley-ball, track and tennis allow much opportunity for inter-school competition. Touch football, swimming, bowling, gymnastics, badminton, modern dance, riding, and hiking provide a further variety of games and athletic activities.
Dances Student organized dances and parties are held frequently. The junior-senior prom, the most formal and important social event of the year, is the only dance to be held off campus. Such activities are usually open only to students enrolled at A.C.S. and are always supervised and chaperoned by members of the faculty.
General Scbool PoIicy Life at the American Community School is guided by a considered policy of order and good taste. The school is conscious of the American image being conveyed to the Lebanese host community, and realizes that differences between cultures can easily lead to misunderstandings. Many of the school rules have been established to avoid such difficulties.
Dress and Grooming Students are expected to be well-groomed and to follow d dress code of good taste during the school day and when off campus. This code is defined by the administration, in consultation with the grouping committee. Students may dress informally during the school day. Boarding students must dress more formally for dinner each day. Boys wear dark suits for Sunday vespers and dinner.
Alchohol and Drugs No student at the American Community School may drink intoxicating beverages or use toxic or habit forming drugs. Possession or use is grounds for immediate expulsion.
Smoking The smoking regulations at the American Community School are clearly defined. Students in grades eleven and twelve may smoke but only with wrltten parental permission. Disobedience of this rule is grounds for suspension or eventual expulion. The Headmaster particularly requests that every student and his parents understand these conditions before application for admission is made.
Medical Care

In case of illness or accident, immediate professional care is provided by the school nurses in the well-equipped infirmary. The school doctor visits the campus daily, and special treatment is readily available at the American University of Beirut hospitaL The school counselor is in constant touch with any student who is in the hospital, and keeps the parents closely informed. Medical services supplied from outside the school Infirmary are charged to a student's personal medical account.
Boarding Life Life in the boarding department has to be a regulated existence. Students who feel they cannot live within the framework of rules proven necessary over the years should not come to the American Community School.

Students live two or three to a room, and are grouped by classes on the different floors of the dormitories. Two or more faculty advisors live on each floor, and every boarding student has a faculty advisor. Supervision and discipline are handled directly by student prefects and monitors with the support of the faculty and administration. Regular study halls are held every evening in the boarding department except on Fridays and Saturdays.

Within the boardmg situation, opportunlty is given for each person to develop responsible maturity and to learn to live closely with others. Every boarding student is expected to do his share in helping the society in which he lives to run more smoothly. Students make their own beds, are responsible for cleaning their rooms for inspection, take turns at waiting on tables in the dining hall, and doing such other work as wlll make them more aware of the thought and labor that lie hehind well-ordered living.

Religious Services Sunday morning chaperonage for boarders is provided to Protestant and Catholic services. A Sunday evening vespers service is required for all boarding students. These programs, conducted by the school chaplain and the vespers committee, often include stimulating guest speakers of varied nationalities and religious persuasions.

AMERICAN COMMUNITY SCHOOL

BEIRUT, LEBANON

DIPLOMA REQUIREMENTS

Diplomas are awarded to those students who have satisfactorily completed the A. C. S. requirements of:

(a) sixteen academic major units of credit with at least fourteen final grades of C- (70) or above.

(b) two activity units which may be earned by electing minors (1/2 unit each) and/or by participating in organized after-school programs (1/4 unit per term, and

(c) four physical education credits (earned by participation in regular classes). The academic major credits must include: English I, Il, III, IV; mathematics I, II; biology and one other science course; American history and one other history course; two units of the same foreign language.


RECOMMENDED SCIENCE SEQUENCE



Freshman:
Sophomore:
Junior:
Senior:
Minimum

Physical Science
Physical Science
Biology
Biology
Standard

Physical Science
Btoiogy
Chemistry
Physics
Accelerated

Biology
CHEM Study Chemistry
PSSC Physics
Advanced Chemistry

RECOMMENDED MATH. SEQUENCE



Freshman:
Sophomore:
Junior:
Senior:
Minimum

Fundamentals of Math
Math. I
Math. Il
Math. III
Standard

Math. I
Math. II
Math. III
Math. IV
Accelerated

Math. I, II
Math. II, III
Math. IV
Math. V

ACADEMIC MAJORS

9th. Grade

*Engllsh I




French l,II
German I,II
Spanish I,II
Latin I,II
Arabic I,II

Ancient History







Math. (Fundamentals)
Math. I,II

Physical Science
Biology





l0th. Grade

*English II
Creative Wring



French I,ll,lll
German I,ll,lll
Spanish I,ll,lll
Latin I,ll,lll
Arabic I,ll,lll

Ancient History
European History






Math (Fundamentals)
Math I,ll,lll

Physical Science
Biology
CHEM Study Chemistry



11 th. Grade

*English III
Creative Writing
Public Speaking
Great Books (Honors)

French I,II,III,IV
German I,ll,lll
Spanish I,ll,lll
Latin I,ll,lll
Arabic I,ll,lll

*American History
Europeann History
Middle East History
History of Religlon
Economics (Honors)
Philosophy (Honors)
Psychology


Math I,II,III,IV,V

Biology
Regular Chemistry
CHEM Study Chemistry
Regular Physics
PSSC Physlcs
12 th. Grade

*English IV
Creative Writing
Public Speaking
Great Books (Honors)

French II,III,IV
German II,III
Spanish II,III
Latin II,III
Arabic II,III

American History
Europeann History
Middle East History
History of Religlon
Economics (Honors)
Philosophy (Honors)
Psychology


Math II,III,IV,V

Biology
Regular Chemistry
CHEM Study Chemistry
Regular Physics
PSSC Physlcs
Advanced Chemistry

MINORS

Art I,II (1/2 unit)

Music
Instrumental I,II,III (1/2 unit)
Appreclation I,II,III (1/2 unit)

Personal Typewriting (1/2 unit)

Art I,II (1/2 unit)
Music
VocalI,II (1/2 unit)
Instrumental I,II,III (1/2 unit)
Appreclation I,II,III (1/2 unit)

Personal Typewriting (1/2 unit)

Art I,II,III (1/2 unit)
Music
VocalI,II (1/2 unit)
Instrumental I,II,III (1/2 unit)
Appreclation I,II,III (1/2 unit)

Personal Typewriting (1/2 unit)

Art I,II,III,IV (1/2 unit)
Music
VocalI,II (1/2 unit)
Instrumental I,II,III (1/2 unit)
Appreclation I,II,III (1/2 unit)

Personal Typewriting (1/2 unit)


* Required courses

(The above is OCR scanned from a brochure I was given at ACS in January 1970 when I was there doing field work for my final diploma project in architecture at the Kingston School of Architecture. - B. Ludigsen)

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