The American Overseas School of Rome is a fully accredited pre-kindergarten through 12th grade (ages 3-19) institute of learning. Our accreditation was renewed in 2006 by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools. In addition, we were the first international school to be awarded MSA's prestigious International Credential.
A Short History of AOSR
For the first half of its existence the school was called the Overseas School of Rome. There actually was an OSR before 1947, but not the same school that was incorporated in that year. It was a little US Army school bearing the same title, located near Ponte Milvio started in September, 1946. We are greatly indebted to them for both starting the idea of our school and for their help when the school had to move at the end of its first year.
When news came that the allied troops were being moved to Trieste, five American and five British mothers (some from the original Ponte Milvio school) got together and decided to form a school which should be undenominational and international, combining the best of the British and American systems. This group is responsible for the organization of the official corporation that became our school.
Next they had to find a place for the school. They managed to get the British and American Ambassadors, as patrons of the school, to put pressure on the Torlonia family to rent the palazzetto of Villa Torlonia on Via Nomentana as our first home. The school opened its doors to the public on October 16, 1947, with a grand total of 60 students.
In 1952 the school moved from its original site to the current location on Via Cassia. Enrollment continued to rise steadily, reflecting the increased numbers of parents assigned to embassies, consulates, and the United Nations, or living in Rome as scholars, artists, journalists, and professionals. The Board of Trustees accepted the challenge and opportunity of rising enrollment by constructing a new high-school building with eight classrooms in 1956, and in 1958 an auditorium and cafeteria were completed to replace the temporary structure that had been built.
That same year, the United States government expressed its recognition of the school's educational program, and the importance of the mutual respect and collaboration generated by the exchange of ideas and experiences among members of the multinational student body and faculty, by making a grant to the school. The new elementary school was constructed, additional high school classrooms completed, and the gymnasium installed.
In 1965 the elementary school extension was completed, as well as leveling of the field, and the school took on its present day appearance. The Hillside Theater was added in the early 70s. While enrollment peaked at over 800 students in the late 60s and early 70s, in recent years it has stabilized around 600 students. The change to the current name of American Overseas School of Rome was adopted in the late 70s.
In the 1990's, the implementation of a school-wide renovation plan was started to improve the general school plant and to bring it into conformity with the new Italian and European safety norms. Our school kitchen and dining hall were completely refurbished; the high school façade and windows were replaced, new lockers installed and science laboratory refurbished; the gymnasium floor, windows and bleachers were overhauled, as well as the middle school interiors. Almost 100 computers are now at the disposal of students in four computer labs, and in addition, each classroom and teacher has at least one computer as well. The constant improvement of our facilities and academic programs remains a primary focus.
In June 2007, AOSR celebrated its 60th Anniversary with a spectacular series of events that marked this truly special occasion.