Reflections and Advice:
1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
My teenager just graduated from CDL, nearly 40 years after me, and the school continues to provide an excellent quality education through block classes (and expansive AP & IB programs), with truly talented and caring teachers, a diverse curriculum, an extremely international student body, in a beautiful and safe location (Geneva). My son plans to send his own future children there!
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
My son became independent, self reliant, expanded his thinking about the world and others, raised his GPA substantially, and gained a group of lifelong friends.CDL provided the perfect environment for personal growth and was a solid segway to college life.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
Go sooner. Spend a few years at CDL.
4.) What did you like most about your school?
The environment gave me the freedom to grow as a person while having the active support of great teachers and house parents whenever I needed help.
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
Happy Days Cafe right down the street. Enough said.
1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
The block class method of teaching is just like college: you take higher level courses, but only attend each one around 2 or 3 days per week. This gives you more time to absorb the lessons in between classes and study or rest during a few hours each day that would otherwise be spent sitting in a more traditional high school class.
1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
The school offers all of the usual sports (except not American football) in an inter-mural competitive environment. For the highest level players, they accommodate you by making arrangements with outside club teams.
Art, Music, and Theatre:
1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
Some seriously talented music students attend this school. Check out the 2017 graduation live stream to hear the piano soloist, the Black Eyed Peas rap song, and the full basement band's rock version of Lynard Skinner's Free Bird. Some of these students will have professional careers. And they're perfectly normal, fun-loving kids.
1.) Describe the extracurriculars offered at your school - what did you like most about it?
CDL offers school-sponsored trips to interesting places during all 3 school breaks. They change the venues every year, but always include skiing in the Alps for 3 weekends in January-February. Alternatively, you can go to a foreign country with family/friends if you're old enough and with written approval. My son visited 6 countries during breaks and loved it!
1.) Describe the dorm life in your school - what did you like most about it?
Dorm life fosters independence and maturity. There are specific check-in and check-out rules, and you gain your privileges by demonstrating respect and responsibility for the rules and your dormmates. My son matured 3 years in 1 year and gained some life-long friends that have already had a summer reunion in Miami!
1.) Describe the dining arrangements at your school.
Hearty food, no shortage of options for everyone's taste. As a boarder, you must attend all meals in the dining room -- no hats or cell phones during a mandatory 20 minute stay. Amazing --- students actually learned the art if having polite table conversation in public. Then off to your normal ways after. Parents, I love this detail.
Social and Town Life:
1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
Versoix is a small Swiss canton, 15 minutes from Geneva by rail. The entire environment is natural and stunningly beautiful. The high school students spend weekends in Geneva (with parent's written approval) and it's a safe and exhilarating cosmopolitan place for them to experience. Lots of hiking and bike riding in Versoix, too.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
There are social groups of all kinds and absolutely no one is left out. You can join a club or gather your own group. High school students travel in groups to Geneva on weekends and see each other's groups at cafÃ©s, Lake Geneva, and clubs. The highly international school emphasizes diversity and inclusion and it works.
Breakfast at CDL
Train to Geneva with friends
Lunch in Geneva
Lac Leman boating
Check in to approved stay
Dinner with friends
Club/dancing with friends
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