Frequently Asked Questions About Boarding

What are TASIS boarders like?

We aim for our boarders to be sociable, mature, and courteous students who enjoy being part of a unique boarding community that comprises more than 50 nationalities each year. We seek students who are motivated academically and who are ready to contribute to school life by taking an active approach in their learning and in their community.

How many students occupy a room? 

In a typical year, we have 2–3 students in each High School room and 2–4 students in each Middle School room. For the 2020–2021 academic year, we plan to have a maximum of two students per room.

Can I choose my dormitory or my room?

We allocate all students to dormitories and to rooms based on our extensive placement experience and on the educational interests of students. We try to ensure that students who speak the same native language are not placed in the same room (unless their native language is English).

Boarders are expected to stay in their assigned dormitories and rooms for the year. In May, returning boarding students fill out a questionnaire and have the option to request a roommate for the following year.

When and where do I study?

All boarding students must do their schoolwork in their rooms during evening study hall sessions that generally last two hours and are held Sunday–Thursday. All Middle School study halls are supervised by Dorm Parents, who are available to provide assistance. High School students who have a GPA below 2.0 are placed into a supervised study hall so that they receive the support they need. High School students in strong academic standing may be granted the opportunity to study independently, often in the dining room or library.

Quiet is to be maintained during study halls, and there is to be no movement from room to room. Parents should also note that boarding students may not receive telephone calls during this time.

What is the food like at TASIS?

Meals provide a valuable opportunity for our community to come together, as students, administrators, staff, faculty, and faculty children find time to relax and discuss their days. The majority of meals are buffet-style and are served in the historic Villa De Nobili, which also offers ample terrace seating that diners take advantage of all fall, spring, and summer.

Our talented Dining Services staff offers a wide variety of healthy, nutritious meals. A hot breakfast is offered each morning along with an assortment of cereal, yogurt, and fruit. Lunch and dinner feature hot and cold options, including vegetarian dishes and an extensive salad bar.

In addition to the main dining room, an on-campus café sells an extensive range of snacks and drinks, and fresh fruit is available all day in the dormitories. There are also many popular local restaurants that deliver to the School.

Approximately 10 times per year, High School students and faculty gather in their Advisor groups for a formal family-style dinner. Each of these meals has a timely theme (Oktoberfest, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Chinese New Year, etc.) and is served by student volunteers. Middle School boarding students and dorm parents also enjoy a family-style dinner each Wednesday evening.

What happens on the weekends?

We offer a full boarding program, which includes many exciting weekend activities and trips that are designed to appeal to a wide variety of students. Examples include structured sports and activities on campus, adventure trips around Switzerland, and cultural visits to cities such as Lucerne, Milan, and Venice. Students may also propose their own activities to the Weekend Activities Coordinator.

We expect students to take part in activities, as we believe that enjoying all that the surrounding area has to offer while having fun and memorable experiences is an integral part of boarding life at TASIS. Within the first few weeks of each academic year, all boarding students are required take part in a weekend trip with their dorm.

On certain weekends, students may be permitted to check out from campus to see family or friends.

When do I need to be in my dormitory?

All students must return to their dormitories by the following times:

Sunday through Thursday 
Check-in:18:40–18:45 (grades 7–8)
Check-in:19:40–19:50 (grades 9–12 & PG)
Lights out:10:00  (grades 7–8)
 10:30  (grades 9–10)
 11:00   (grade 11–12)
Friday and Saturday
Grades 7–8 
First check-in:18:45
Second check-in:20:45
Lights out:23:00
Grades 9–12 & PG 
First check-in:17:30–18:00
Second check-in:21:30–22:00 (grades 9–10)
 22:30–23:00 (grades 11, 12 & PG)
Lights out:Midnight

Boarding students are expected to observe the lights-out times and should not leave their dormitories before 6:00 AM. Students out of their dorms after check-in times are liable to severe disciplinary action, including the possibility of suspension or dismissal. Dormitory hours also apply to all school trips unless exceptions need to be made by the chaperone.

How do I check out from campus on the weekend?

Boarding students may leave campus on Friday after their last lesson finishes and must return by the first check-in on Sunday. They must meet the following conditions before they are granted permission to check out:

  • The weekend checkout online permission form must be submitted by the end of Tuesday in the week they intend to travel.
  • The host assuming responsibility for the student must be at least 25 years old.
  • The School must receive confirmation from the host via our REACH system.

What if I need to check out on a weeknight?

Occasionally a student may be permitted to have visitors on a weeknight and miss a study hall. These visits must be arranged in advance with the Duty Administrator and Dorm Parent, who are under no obligation to grant the request.

Can I leave campus during the day?

No, TASIS is a closed campus. Unless they have special permission or are visiting the Business Office, all students—day and boarding—are expected to remain on campus and in dress code during the academic day.

Is the School open over the holidays?

The School is closed during the Christmas holiday, during Spring break, and over the summer. Students may not be in the dormitories during these times.

When can I leave for the holidays?

Boarders must attend all lessons and may leave on the designated date after their last lesson. Dormitories generally remain open for one day after the end of the final lesson or exam. (See the 2017–2018 Middle School and High School calendars for precise dates.)

When do I have to return after the holidays? 

Boarders must be back in their dormitories before 6 PM on the day before classes begin.

Is there an airport transfer service?

The School coordinates all transportation from airports for Middle School students. High School boarders must arrange for their own transportation from airports, which can be coordinated with help from Reception.

Will I need pocket money during the school year?

We recommend that boarding students have some pocket money available at all times. They can collect pocket money from the ATM on campus, and parents should ensure that their children’s accounts are maintained. 

Where do I go if I need to buy something?

There is a post office and a small market within a short walk from campus, and during the week students have free time in which they are allowed to visit local shops in Lugano.

Where do I keep valuables? 

Upon arrival, boarding students must give their passports and travel permits to their Dorm Parent or to Reception for safekeeping. Each student also has a safe and a cupboard with a lock in his or her room. We recommend that students do not bring valuable items to school, but if they choose to do so, these items must be securely stored.

Is bedding provided?

Yes, all bedding—including duvets and pillows—is provided and washed by the School. Students can also choose to bring their own bedding if they prefer.

How do I do my laundry? 

A professional laundry service is available to all boarding students. Laundry is typically collected on Monday/Tuesday and returned on Thursday/Friday. There are also two separate laundry facilities for students to use if they wish to do their own laundry.

Do I need a mobile phone? 

Yes, boarding students must have a working mobile phone and must give their numbers to the boarding team. The use of mobile phones is not permitted during meals, in class or study hall, or after lights out.

Is there a School uniform?

Yes. There are winter and summer uniforms, and students must follow the guidelines in the Middle School and High School Student Handbooks.

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