Our Philosophy:
We believe in the process of inquiry-based learning in an experiential, hands on environment. Our integrated curriculum reaches across disciplines and age levels where students are motivated to achieve their highest potential, meet academic and social challenges with openness, and willingness to become productive citizens.



Ypsilanti International Elementary School (YIES)

is an International Baccalaureate candidate school.  During the candidate phase, YIES takes actions necessary to fulfill the International Baccalaureate® (IB) requirements for authorization. IB Candidate Process

Our elementary school division at YIES offers Pre-K through 2nd-grade classes this year, adding 3rd, 4th and 5th Grade Fall  2017-18.  We offer a proven IB Curriculum for tomorrow's leaders. 

At YIES we differentiate instruction so that all students experience success. We create a safe and caring community where students can grow socially and emotionally, and academically.  Parents, teachers, students and community members are cooperating partners in this learning environment.

What is an IB PYP School?

The International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme (IB PYP) is a curriculum framework designed for students 3 to 12 years of age.  The IB PYP is a unique programme and curriculum framework that is designed to nurture and develop the whole child as an inquirer; both in the classroom, and in the world outside. IB Primary Years Programme

The Mission of IB is:

To develop inquiring, knowledgeable, and caring young people.
• To create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.
• To work with schools, governments, and international organizations to develop challenging programs of international education and rigorous assessment.
• To encourage students worldwide to become active, compassionate, and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right. IB Mission Statement

YIES Vision

Ypsilanti International Elementary School facilitates the development of lifelong learners who:

  • Are creative problem solvers with a broad perspective of the world around them
  • Are respectful, moral individuals who take pride in their national heritage
  • Are equipped to participate in the community as team players and effective leaders

YIES Mission

The mission of Ypsilanti International Elementary School is to strive to create a peaceful world by empowering students to be compassionate, innovative and reflective lifelong learners.  We are a community that promotes, respects and values cultural diversity and open-mindedness.  Through exemplary International Baccalaureate instruction we ensure that every YIES student becomes a culturally literate, inquirer and knowledgeable citizen.  

Purpose Statement

At YIES we are committed to creating lifelong learners who are open-minded, caring, and responsible members of a global society.  Understanding that every student is unique, we offer diverse opportunities in academics to cultivate students who are inquiring and knowledgeable thinkers.  We demonstrate our passion for education through high expectations for our staff and students.  

Our purpose is to create a safe and caring community where ALL students can grow socially, emotionally and academically.  We work as a village of parents, teachers, students and community members to produce successful citizens.   

Core Values

Two essential concepts support Core Values and Beliefs: the Learner Profile and the IB Attitudes.

The IB-PYP Attitudes are a vital focus in the development of positive attitudes towards people, the environment, and learning.  These are the core values ascribed in the day to day IB attitudes we use:

  • Appreciation
  • Commitment
  • Confidence
  • Cooperation
  • Creativity
  • Curiosity
  • Empathy
  • Enthusiasm
  • Independence
  • Integrity
  • Respect
  • Tolerance

Core Beliefs

YIES believes that learning is an endless journey and focuses on making students lifelong learners.  Students are engaged meaningfully to develop thinking, research, communication, social and self management skills to build themselves as independent learners.

  • Inquirers
  • Knowledgeable
  • Thinkers
  • Communicators
  • Principled
  • Open-Minded
  • Caring
  • Risk-Takers
  • Balanced
  • Reflective

Curriculum and Subjects at YIES:

The IB PYP is a curriculum framework, which is an organized set of standards or learning outcomes that define the content to be learned and taught. This program develops the youngest students to be inquisitive, thoughtful learners.  International Baccalaureate® (IB) programmes aim to do more than other curricula by developing inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who are motivated to succeed.

Beginning in preschool at YIES students benefit from a well-planned and individualized instruction in all core subjects:

  • Math
  • Language
  • Spanish
  • Social Studies
  • Visual Arts
  • Science
  • Music
  • Technology
  • and Physical Education

What is Inquiry-Based Learning?

The direct instruction approach used by IB PYP is Inquiry-based Learning.  Inquiry-based Learning is a process where students are involved in their learning, formulate questions, investigate widely and then build new understandings, meanings and knowledge.

What does a PYP classroom look like?

  • A PYP classroom is organized to encourage students to become internationally-minded learners. Displayed items are interactive for students (consider eye level placement) and reflect a PYP approach to learning that permeates the classroom.
  • The classroom is kid-friendly, engaging, and orderly. Everything posted has a clearly defined purpose relating to student learning.
  • Classroom setup allows students to move easily between small group, whole group and individual learning activities.

What does the IB require of Schools and Teachers?

  • A global perspective to content
  • The implementation of the Learner Profile (describes the attributes of an internationally-minded person)
  • Planning time for teachers at the same grade level AND different grade levels to write and reflect on their work
  • Interdisciplinary units (units that include content from more than one subject area)
  • Extensive training for ALL staff involved in the PYP Programme
  • The involvement of the parent community in supporting the programme

What does the research say?

  • Research suggests that using inquiry-based learning with students can help them become more creative, more positive and more independent (Kuhne, 1995).
  • This is true for all students, including those with special needs who require more individual attention during the process.
  • Other academic research shows that inquiry-based learning improves student achievement (GLEF, 2001).


We offer a variety of programs and activities for our students:


  • Pre-K through 12th Grade Continuum Model (PYP at YIES, MYP at WIMA, & DP at WIHI) for the International Baccalaureate Program.
  • World Language/Spanish Curriculum for students Preschool through Fifth Grade.
  • Art, Music, P.E., Outdoor Recess, Field Trips and Engaging Assemblies.
  • Kids Clubs (Before and After School Spanish, Arts, Sports, and Academics Enrichment).
  • YMCA-Ann Arbor Before and After School child care onsite.
  • Special Education and Intervention Programs (Speech & Language, Social Work, Academic Support, OT, & PT).

APPLY NOW!  Applications for 2017-18

International Elementary Application Kindergarten through 5th Grade

Ypsilanti International Preschool Application (3 and 4 years)

Application and Enrollment Process:


  1. Applications submitted by May 8th will be processed on May 15th by application date, and/or lottery if more applications are submitted than enrollment slots available. 
  2. There is no lottery for our tuition-based preschool program. Preschool enrollment is processed by date of application submission, and availability. 
  3. If a lottery is applicable (K through 5th grade only), a wait list will be made based on the lottery.
  4. We accept applications year-round; however, applications submitted after May 8th will be added to the wait list, as submitted by application date.  
  5. We will notify families who submitted application on or before May 8th of acceptance the week of May 22nd through May 26th.  Families must notify our office if they accept the offer by June 2nd.
  6. Our office will continue to contact families to fill enrollment slots as they become available throughout the school year, and designated summer office times.
  7. In effort to better service you, make sure your contact information on file is correct and current.  Once you are notified of acceptance at YIES, the next step is to complete a YCS New Student Online Registration form.  Please DO NOT complete the YCS New Student Registration form prior to acceptance.  


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YIES Preschool Enrollment Options


  • Option 1: FIVE DAY  ( Monday through Friday)
  • Option 2: THREE DAY MINIMUM (select up to 3 days)  Mon  Tues  Wed  Thurs  Fri

Preschool Tuition

Tuition for ages 3 and 4 only

  • $40/daily | $200/weekly
  • YCS employee discount available

YIES Provides:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Snack (post naptime)

YCMA-Ann Arbor Before & After Child Care Services

$10.00 per day for 3 days
$ 8.00 per day for 4-5 days

School Information


503 Oak Street
Ypsilanti, MI 48198
Phone: 734-221-2400
Fax: 734-221-2403
Profile Photo
Cassandra Sheriff
Lisa Imbrunnone

Grade Levels

Preschool - Kindergarten -1st - 2nd Grade 


8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. 
Early Dismissal
8:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.  

Victoria Davis
Director of Dining Services
734-221-1024 xo: 317-869-4466