Congressional School

Congressional School is a co-ed independent day school for infants to eighth graders in Falls Church, VA. Through academic and summer programs, students are encouraged to explore, engage, and embrace challenge in a diverse, inclusive community.
Graduates develop confidence, a sense of ethics, leadership and collaboration skills, and the desire to question, collaborate, create, and lead.

Top Placements

Congressional School places among the top 20% of private schools in Virginia for:

School Overview

School Membership(s)School Assoc.National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS)
Virginia Association of Independent Schools (VAIS)
Religious AffiliationNonsectarian
Grades OfferedGrades Nursery/Preschool-8
Year Founded1939

Student Body

Total Students401 students
Student Body TypeCo-ed
% Students of Color
State avg.: 26%
Students by Grade Congressional School Student By Grade

Academics and Faculty

Total Classroom Teachers49 teachers
Student : Teacher Ratio8:1
National avg.: 13:1
% Faculty w/Advanced Degree
Average Class Size15 students
List of Courses OfferedLink to List of Courses
Classroom Dress CodeFormal
(School Uniform)

Finances and Admission

Admission DeadlineJan. 15 / rolling
Tuition NotesTuition ranges from $25,910 to $30,580. Visit our website to view our tuition fee schedule.
% on Financial Aid
Admissions DirectorGretchen Herbst
Admissions AssociateLaura Day


Total Sports Offered9 sports
SportsBasketball, Climbing, Cross Country, Equestrian, Lacrosse, Soccer, Softball, Track and Field, VolleyballBasketballClimbing,
Cross CountryEquestrian,
SoftballTrack and Field,


Total ExtracurricularsTotal Extra-curric.4 extracurriculars
ExtracurricularsExtra-curric.Club or Organization:
Model UN, Robotics

Arts and Music Programs:
Congressional Chorale

Recreational Athletic Programs:

School Notes

  • The mission of the Congressional School is to  ignite the spark in young learners to become great thinkers and leaders who will positively impact our world. We seek to provide provide an inspirational and challenging student-centered educational experience within our diverse and supportive community where children question, collaborate, create, and lead. We seek to provide a safe and stimulating environment in which children can develop academically, physically, creatively, socially, and emotionally; foster a climate which emphasizes traditional values of citizenship, service, personal responsibility, self-discipline, and respect and compassion for others; challenge students with an accelerated, interactive, and age-appropriate curriculum; provide supporting educational materials and integrate technology throughout the curriculum; maintain a structure and philosophy which assures attention to the unique needs of each child; attract and retain outstanding teachers who actively pursue on-going professional development; sustain a partnership between school and home in the education of the children; encourage all parents to play an active role in the life of the schools; take advantage of the many opportunities afforded by the diverse character of the Schools and of the surrounding metropolitan area; and acknowledge each child's special gifts and contributions.

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  • School Location Miles Grades Students
  • Alexandria
    Grades: NS-8 | 210 students
    6.5 miles
    5917 Telegraph Rd
    Alexandria, VA 22310
    (571) 451-1006
    6.5 NS-8
  • Alexandria
    Grades: PK-8 | 262 students
    5.8 miles
    3700 Burgundy Road
    Alexandria, VA 22303
    (703) 329-6968
    5.8 PK-8
  • Annandale
    Grades: NS-8 | 241 students
    2.1 miles
    3819 Gallows Road
    Annandale, VA 22003
    (703) 256-3620
    2.1 NS-8
  • Alexandria
    Grades: NS-8 | 224 students
    5.9 miles
    2400 Russell Rd
    Alexandria, VA 22301
    (703) 548-4804
    5.9 NS-8
  • Herndon
    Nysmith School for the Gifted
    Nysmith School for the Gifted Photo - 1:9 teacher/ student ratio allows teachers to help every child succeed. At The Nysmith School, students receive 45 minutes of hands-on science instruction every day.
    Special Program Emphasis
    Grades: PK-8 | 570 students
    14.4 miles
    13625 EDS Drive
    Herndon, VA 20171
    (703) 713-3332
    14.4 PK-8

School Reviews

  5.00 out of 5  (21 reviews)
Trust. Trust is very important. I am so lucky, to not have to worry about anything. Congressional has taken it out of my hands, and I couldn't be happier with the results. These are VERY professional people that love to the extreme.
- Posted by
This is my daughter`s first year at Congressional as a Kindergartener. She went to Congressional Camp last Summer for the first time (and absolutely loved riding the horses, art projects, swimming in the pool, and playing on the playground among the many other activities) - and she said I want to be here all the time!I am truly pleased with the tremendous care and dedication of her teachers, administrators and staff. She is excited to go to school everyday, and when I pick her up she can`t wait to tell me how she spent her day. From singing her French songs, counting in French, coding in Library class, learning about different cultures in Art, making a thermometer in Science, activities on the iPad, fitness skills in PE, to various songs and instruments in Music - I see the unique strengths and value of a Congressional education. We were warmly welcomed by all as a new family well before the start of school, and that sentiment has only grown. We are proud to be a part of the Congressional family!
- Posted by
We looked at a lot of schools when it was time for our daughter to attend kindergarten. Our first choice-by far- was Congressional and we have been delighted with our choice. We wanted a school, of course, where our daughter would receive an excellent education. But it was equally as important to us to find a school where the educators would invest in helping our girl build her character. We work hard at home to teach her how to be kind, and honest, and respectful, and we needed to know she would be somewhere where those core values would be woven into her everyday life. Our girl is also a creative spirit, and we wanted a place where the teachers would take the time to nurture her as an individual and help her thrive as a unique person. We have been thrilled with what she is learning, and most of all, how excited she is to go to school each day. We couldn't be happier with our choice and we are grateful to be part of the Congressional family.
- Posted by
My twins have been at Congressional since they were 2 years old. Now at 10 years old, they are loving it more than ever. When they were toddlers, it was so comforting to leave them in the excellent care of the kind and enthusiastic teachers and staff in the Early Childhood Program. Now, in 4th grade, they still have excellent teachers who utilize the amazing school resources, including the huge campus, to inspire the intellectual curiosity of the students. When I pick up my kids, they are excited, everyday, to tell me about all of the things they did that day. My husband I love the school for these reasons but also because it has become a valued community for our family. We love the annual fall festival and the family nights. We look forward to seeing the other parents who have become cherished friends as well as seeing the kids with their friends whom they have been growing up with.
- Posted by
We and our children love The Congressional School. We have been with the school for 4 years (our son is in 4th Grade and our daughter just began 1st Grade). Our experience has been that it is a high quality (yet unpretentious) school with a strong sense of community and our children are receiving an extremely good education there. The class sizes tend to be smaller, so the kids never lack the level of attention they need to ensure doing well and never feeling lost in the cracks. We are pleased that our kids always get up looking forward to going to school at Congressional. The School has also been wonderful in its role as a host/charter for our children`s Cub Scout Pack 1229
- Posted by
We were in search for a school that offered an environment where our son could be a student and a child. We were looking for a school where teachers really took the time to get to know our son, the student he is and the child in him. We have found this at Congressional and we see it in our son's attitude towards school every single morning. Our son's attitude towards school, his teachers and classmates says a lot about the school itself. I cannot say enough about the faculty and staff at Congressional and how they approach each individual child for who he or she is. Our son comes home and speaks highly of his teachers, he looks up to them and has embraced the experiential learning at Congressional. The curriculum is challenging, offers options and yet is tailored to the child. In our first year at Congressional, we have felt and seen the difference, and are thrilled to be a part of the Congressional School community!
- Posted by
Enrolling our son at Congressional is one of the bet decisions we`ve made as parents. Our son has thrived there, in no small part to the dedication of the teachers, staff, and the counselors who run the after-school programming. Not only are we very pleased with the academic programing and support that`s offered, Congressional offers a community that I believe is unique. 8th graders know the names of the 4th graders, who in turn are "older buddies" for the kindergarten students. All the students are invested in each other`s success.Small class sizes and a variety of activities provide each student with the opportunity to explore a variety of interests, ranging from sports, music, art, and even science in technology, both in the classroom and as an extracurricular activity. I`m always impressed at the type and quality of the work the students are doing. Congressional is a wonderful fit for our family.
- Posted by
We have been extremely happy with our experience at Congressional School! The teachers and staff are amazing and really care about the students. The environment fosters both academic challenge and social growth for the students and having access to such a large, beautiful campus gives the opportunity for outdoor learning that is truly special.The overall community feels like a family and we are so happy to be a part of it! Most important-. Our 3rd grader loves going to school and comes home happy and excited about his day, ready to share all that he has learned.I highly recommend this school!
- Posted by
Choosing to move our daughter to Congressional from public school as a sixth grader, and then our son the following year, was the best parenting decision we`ve made in a long time. Our daughter`s first year at Congressional was a resounding success. She recaptured her natural curiosity and enthusiasm for learning thanks to the caring and competent teachers. Her awareness of, and pride in, her learning strengths has jumped by leaps and bounds. She feels challenged academically but also, importantly, supported and celebrated for the unique individual she is. This is due to the deliberate, thoughtful emphasis Congressional places on the whole child, not just the academic side. She has stretched herself by playing a team sport for the first time in 5 years; and, under the encouraging eye of a treasured music teacher, started passionately playing the piano again after a brief hiatus. We couldn`t be more grateful to Congressional for our daughter`s growth and development during these critical middle school years and are eager to travel the road ahead with our son as he too charts his own path.
- Posted by
I have worked at Congressional School since 2016 and really appreciate this school. I personally went to public school growing up, and I wish I could have gone to school here. I love how the students are constantly encouraged to problem solve and think through different possible solutions in all of their subjects. I love how they are encouraged to have a global perspective. I love how they are encouraged to lead and to live up to strong core values every day. And I love the teachers and administrative leaders and seeing their passion for providing the best for these students.
- Posted by
We enrolled our son in preschool at Congressional one month before turning 3, which the school is willing to do with the understanding that they will likely have a second year of preschool.On the first day of school, I think we were more nervous that he was. At the end of that day, we knew we had made the right decision. He was more animated, engaged, and conversant than he had been in some time. He continued to flourish throughout the first few weeks and over the entire year.Now in his second year, we are thrilled with his growth and the empathetic leader he is becoming. We look forward to his continued social, emotional, and intellectual growth at Congressional.The 40-acre campus is an incredible resource. The teachers frequently take the students on nature walks to learn about the world and environment around them. Our son`s favorite after-school activity is Rocks, Sticks, and Puddles where a staff member explores the woods with the kids!
- Posted by
We wanted our son to form positive, healthy emotional bonds with other kids, faculty, and staff by feeling valued enough to be vulnerable. There`s plenty of time to learn to have your emotional guard up. Kindergarten should be a place where emotions are recognized, supported, and shared, not attacked and protected. Also, you can`t learn how to have good relationships; you can only be shown. We wanted a place where good relationships based on respect, trust and warmth was modeled as a matter of fact. Intellectual experience was the least of our worries. Every kid learns to read, write, add, subtract, multiply, and divide in due time. Some do it a few months earlier than some others. It doesn`t really matter in the larger scheme of things. But we did want a school that constantly experimented with its own curriculum and is always asking the difficult, probing questions about its own performance. What we really wanted for our child is to meet a collective mentor that would lead, guide, share, and grow as our son journeys through his maturity. So, the question that we were really asking in our school search was, "Who can we best partner in order to provide our son with the tools to develop a positive relationship with the world that he will feel honored and privileged to actively participate in?" Congressional has been that partner so far.
- Posted by
While we believe our child would have been fine at most schools we looked at, we have no doubt that because we chose Congressional, our child is thriving. The small class size, up-to-date teaching methods, community support, opportunity to be outside and explore, and focus on character development make this school one of a kind in this area. It seemed that most schools in the DC area focus on either academics or character development, leaving parents with the impossible choice of picking what they want their children to spend their days focusing on. With Congressional, we strongly feel that our child is supported and challenged in both areas equally.
- Posted by
This is my daughter's first year with Congressional (Fourth Grade). We transferred her from a Fairfax County Public School because we were unhappy with the lack of communication from the teacher and staff. Additionally, our daughter had become increasingly anxious about her previous school due to unresolved bullying issues. This year at Congressional has been a night and day difference for her, and for us. The exceptional attention from her great teachers and staff, the degree of communication we receive weekly, and the accessibility of Congressional Staff has been tremendous. Our daughter went from dreading every day at school to looking forward to it; from crying over challenging homework to tackling it head on right after school. While I certainly can't say enough about the quality of the education she is receiving, even it is over-shadowed by the increased confidence, security, and positivity our daughter has already developed within this, her first year.
- Posted by
When I was looking for a new school for my children, I approached each school with a list- Is the average class size acceptable? Does the school offer "specials" (art/PE/music, etc.) and, if so, do they offer them frequently enough? Do students from this school matriculate to good high schools? Does this school have the ability to handle my children if they turn out to be geniuses, or if it`s discovered that they struggle and need extra help? Are the teachers well qualified? Do the students seem happy? Is there a lot of parent involvement? Blah, blah, blah. I was so smug- I had a LIST, and if I could answer each question with a YES, then I won the prize of sending my children to the best school! Many of the independent schools I visited met most of the criteria on my super special list, and I felt like I had some good options. Then I visited Congressional School, and I realized that while my list was a good start, I had NO IDEA what I COULD be asking for in a school. It`s like drinking instant coffee and being perfectly happy with it- until someone introduces you to a French press. Or those really cute videos of babies who get glasses for the first time and giggle uncontrollably at the sight of their parents` faces. They had no idea what they were missing, and neither did I. I had no idea that a school could be so amazing! Needless to say, Congressional has far exceeded my expectations. My children are excited and happy every morning to go to school, and I ALWAYS feel that the faculty and staff are excited and happy to have them there. It`s hard to adequately describe the community at Congressional. I heard a lot about it during the application process, but I didn`t really get it until I was there to see the day to day operations. It`s truly special supportive and friendly, but not annoying or intrusive. The campus is unreal. It`s 40 acres of fun (a creek, horses, ropes course, pools), and the teachers do an excellent job of using it to reinforce what they teach in the classroom. I`m also thrilled that they offer a great extended hours program and after school activities. For families with two working parents, it`s nice to have "one stop shopping", where children can go straight from school to horseback riding/chess club/soccer without having to find a nanny to transport them from one place to another. It`s also great for parents with multiple children, because we all know it`s impossible to be driving your daughter to ballet while your son is expected at karate AT THE SAME TIME.We ended up looking at independent schools mostly because we weren`t thrilled with our public school option. I am so happy that we didn`t move to a neighborhood that had a public school that I liked, because we probably would have gone that route and would have no idea what we were missing at Congressional. I feel lucky to be part of such a remarkable place.
- Posted by
My son is a rising kindergartener, and he has attended Congressional since the age of 3. He genuinely loves the school. I think Congressional School is a great value with its sprawling campus and small classes. The principal and staff are a dedicated team. Some of the buildings could use a healthy refreshing, but overall it is a solid choice through 8 grade. It ends at 8th grade but the staff will help each student get placed in a great high school.
- Posted by
My child has been enrolled at Congressional School from the age of three months and I can't imagine a better experience. The faculty is so nurturing, the facilities combine a quiet-campus setting with state-of-the art tools to offer everything a child needs to grow and develop, and the campus feels every bit as safe and secure as one's own home. But most importantly, my child comes home happy every day and always eager to go back tomorrow ... perhaps the most meaningful endorsement of all. So if you're looking for a top school and an unbeatable location, you should definitely put Congressional School at the top of your list.
- Posted by
Congressional School is an amazing school. We have 3 children enrolled. We had our choice of many private schools in Northern Virginia and this was our first choice. The academics, teachers, and extracurricular offerings are all fantastic. In addition, the families are down to earth and vested in the success of the school and their children. Highly recommend!
- Posted by
I am a parent of a middle school student who has attended Congressional since pre-school. I have been thrilled with the caring attitude of the teachers and administration throughout. There are a number of exceptional teachers, and I cannot be more pleased with how our child has done academically, which has included very good results in standardized tests and national academic contests.
- Posted by
Congressional School is an exceptional school. I can tell you a lot about their strong record of academic excellence and their curriculum, but there`s more to this school than just that. What`s most important to me is that my two girls are always excited in the mornings when they arrive at school and are always smiling when I pick them up. It`s a very dad-friendly school too, and the teachers and extended hours staff are very helpful in keeping me straight since I`m the one who drops off and picks up every day. My children have learned so much over the last 8 years, and their good grades and high scores on standardized testing reflect the quality of their education. Congressional is just such a great community for both kids and parents with lots of family-oriented events throughout the school year. Congressional also provides me and my family with a great sense of security knowing they take entry, exit, and child sign-out very seriously. Did I mention the 40 acres of land, the creek running through the campus, the horses, the huge pool, the climbing wall, the woods, and the awesome summer camps? Arrange a visit and see for yourself why Congressional School is exceptional.
- Posted by
I'm a current parent of a middle school student at Congressional who has attended since kindergarten. We have had a great experience at Congressional. The environment is friendly and caring. The curriculum is challenging and flexible. Many times it is driven by the interests of the students. The faculty is top notch.
- Posted by

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The average private school tuition in Virginia is $10,932 for elementary schools and $17,149 for high schools (read more about average private school tuition across the country).
The average acceptance rate in Virginia is 84% (read more about average acceptance rates across the country).