An independent K-12 school on a beautiful wooded campus, 3 miles from Washington, DC


John Mathews
IS Head
(703) 749-6396

Mary Cahill
IS Academic Dean
(703) 873-6120

Lucia Campisano
Dean of Student Life
(703) 749-6359

Joleen Hyde
Assistant to IS Head
(703) 749-6390


Providing a stand-alone division for our seventh and eighth grade students allows them space to grow while they pursue rigorous academic work. Ours is a distinctive and welcoming environment that helps students transition to increased academic expectations, guided by teachers who particularly enjoy working with this age group. Students enjoy many opportunities to develop confidence, individual senses of identity, and leadership capabilities as they prepare for their Upper School years.

Science classes involve hands-on learning.

Our students are proud of their musical accomplishments!

Students work together to solve problems.

On nice days, students may choose to study outside.

Orchestra is a great option for musically inclined students.

Studying together is a fantastic way to get to know fellow students.

Student art, like the Intermediate School mask project, is frequently hung up in the hallways.

Heading back to class after a delicious lunch!

Intermediate Schoolers spending time outside on our beautiful campus.

The friendships that are made in Intermediate School can last a lifetime.

Students perform in several concerts over the course of the school year.

The fun and independence of Intermediate School can't be beat!

From the Desk of Mr. Mathews

Welcome to Intermediate School!

One of Potomac’s many strengths is its four-division structure. With Lower, Middle, Intermediate, and Upper Schools, we are able to offer students at each developmental stage programs and support that are uniquely suited to their particular needs.  

Intermediate School challenges and empowers seventh and eighth graders – students who are making the important transition from childhood to the teenage years. We offer these young people a rigorous, age-appropriate curriculum and a learning environment designed to help them attain new levels of autonomy and self-advocacy. Choice within their class schedules, frequent hands-on projects, and diverse opportunities for collaboration help to develop adolescents’ active minds and promote healthy social and emotional growth.

Each IS student has a personalized schedule; a number of world language options and different levels of mathematics are offered, along with a core set of required classes. In addition, each student selects a music option – band, strings, handbells, or chorus – as well as athletic activities from a menu of competitive and non-competitive offerings. Additional opportunities for a well-rounded and enriching learning experience abound: IS students participate in field trips, service learning activities, and a variety of campus clubs and social events

Our teachers are attuned to the seventh and eighth grade mind and have chosen specifically to work with this age group. Each student is assigned an advisor who is also a teacher of one of his or her classes. The advisor stays with the student throughout the full two years in IS, creating a solid relationship of trust and support. The advisor also functions as the primary liaison between school and home, helping to ensure clear communication and a shared commitment to the student’s success and well-being.

Ultimately, Intermediate School provides solid preparation for the next level of academic and personal challenge -- high school. In their time in IS, students gain a strong academic foundation; develop healthy, supportive relationships; and build self-confidence and a sense of autonomy. We believe that this is the best possible preparation for the opportunities that await these young people in the years ahead.

Potomac’s Intermediate School is a stimulating, challenging, nurturing learning community. I invite you to contact me if you would like to learn more about all that we have to offer.


John Mathews
Head of Intermediate School

Read More from the IS Head

Our Intermediate School Head writes on issues relevant to our seventh and eighth graders and their parents. Read more here.