Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I register for school tours?
You can register for a school tour by using the online tour request form. Tours must be scheduled four weeks in advance.

2. How many students may I bring on a school tour?
School tour groups must contain at least 10 students. Please check the tour description for the maximum number of students your chosen tour can accommodate.

3. How many chaperones should I have per student on a school tour?
Tour groups must be accompanied by one adult chaperone for every 10 students.

4. How will I know when my tour has been scheduled?
Once your tour has been scheduled, you will receive a confirmation letter via mail within 10 business days.

5. What should I do if I have not yet received my confirmation letter?
Our tour scheduler is available to answer questions about tours on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday between 2:30 and 4:30 p.m. (September through May). Please contact us at (202) 842-6249 or

6. What should I do if I need to cancel my scheduled tour?
To cancel your tour, please call our tour scheduler at (202) 842-6249 as soon as possible.

7. What will students experience on a school tour?
School tours include in-depth exploration and discussion at four to six tour stops in the galleries. Trained volunteer docents encourage careful observation, foster an open exchange of ideas, and cultivate connections between art and life. Tours use a variety of teaching strategies, and may include sketching, creative writing, and group activities.

8. Where should I meet the docent for my school tour?

All school tours take place in the West Building.

Groups taking the following tours should enter on Constitution Avenue at 6th Street:

  • American Art
  • Mythology
  • Sculpture and Sketching
  • Spanish Art

All other tours should use the Mall entrance on Madison Drive.

9. What lunch options are available for school tour groups?
Bag lunches may be stored in the checkrooms but may not be eaten in the Gallery cafeteria. School groups can make arrangements in advance to purchase lunches from the cafeteria by emailing View group meal plan menus and ordering information.

10. Where can the buses park?
Buses may let students off at the entrance noted on your confirmation letter. Parking for buses is usually allowed only on Independence Avenue near the Washington Monument.

11. Where can I park if I drive to the Gallery?
There are two-hour metered parking spaces on 3rd and 4th Streets as well as three-hour parking on Madison Drive and Jefferson Drive.

12. Are there wheelchairs available?
Wheelchairs are available on a first-come, first-served basis at all entrances. Please contact Jennifer Cross at (202) 852-6249 regarding additional resources for students and chaperones with special needs.

Schedule a Tour

We are no longer accepting tour requests for spring tours. We will begin accepting tour requests for fall tours (September 29–December 5, 2014) on August 4, 2014.


Tour groups must be accompanied by one adult chaperone for every 10 students. Chaperones must remain with the group at all times. It is the responsibility of chaperones to maintain orderly student behavior at the Gallery. Chaperone information cards outlining Gallery visitor policies may be printed in advance.


Our tour scheduler, Jennifer Cross, is available to answer questions Monday through Wednesday between 2:30 and 4:30 p.m. (September through May). Please contact her at (202) 842-6249 or

Also see our Frequently Asked Questions about School Tours.