6 reasons Australian International School Singapore is a top pick for expat families
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6 reasons Australian International School Singapore is a top pick for expat families

You may well have heard of the Australian International School (AIS) in Singapore; a school that’s long been recognised for its dedication to educational excellence.

The school embraces the notion of a holistic, well-rounded education that values not only the academic side of learning, but also recognises the intrinsic value of the arts and sports in a child’s development.

The experienced team of educators, who work across a range of international curricula, form the bedrock of this sterling reputation. These are the people who guide each student through challenging academic programs that develop the intellectual, personal, emotional and social skills needed to succeed in a global world.

Perhaps you think you’ve heard this all before, which is hardly surprising considering just how many international schools there are out there, with many offering a range of fantastic education opportunities.

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But there must be a reason why, for almost 25 years, AIS has been a bastion of quality education in multi-cultural Singapore and has proven overwhelmingly popular with expat families looking for that taste of home away from home.

Here’s what makes AIS unique…

Location

Set in the heart of Asia Pacific, you can’t do much better than the vibrant city of Singapore for your base while overseas.

Singapore is not only a stone’s throw away from Australia and New Zealand (by Aussie standards, at least), its repeatedly voted best city in the world for expats, on top of recently earning the title of City of the Future from the Financial Times.

AIS itself resides just 10-minutes from Orchard Road and Singapore’s thriving centre. Compared to other schools that make their home outside the city, AIS students remain incredibly close and connected.

It’s a transport hub for the rest of Southeast Asia and the business centre of the region. Not only will kids get the invaluable experience of travel, simultaneously learning about new and exciting cultures, but unending opportunities abound for potential future careers and prospects.

Curriculum

What makes AIS unique is the comprehensive variety of study options on offer. Recognising the international nature of their expat student body, AIS offers both the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program (IBDP) and the Australian curriculum so students and parents, with close guidance from the school’s Curriculum Coordinators, can choose an educational path best suited to future aspirations and intentions.

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Both are highly-respected programs that exhibit an academic standard regarded by top-flight universities and colleges worldwide. While the two programs have much in common, the differences give students and parents a freedom to tailor learning that few other schools afford.

Being able to choose the course that’s right for you enables you to dictate the rest of your life on your terms. And it’s obviously working; AIS graduates have gone on to attend some of the finest universities in the world, including Australian National University, Imperial College London, and the University of California.

School Calendar

A major concern for students and parents alike is consistency in a child’s education. When life takes you traveling across the world, whether for work or adventure, maintaining stability in schooling can be a tricky task.

That’s where AIS’ commitment to the Southern hemisphere school year can be a major advantage.

As the only international school in Singapore to operate under this calendar, AIS provides the seamless transition needed for young adults who need to concentrate on their studies, rather than the stress of moving schools.

And the regional Southern Hemisphere calendar is not only beneficial to Aussies who crave continuity, but also benefits expats from other nationalities. The school year is broken up into 4 equally-sized terms, with the main school holiday falling over the Christmas period and lasting for 5 weeks. For many families this is more appealing than the traditional ‘summer’ break in July and August which can last up to 10 weeks in some international schools and all too often results in exclamations of ‘I’m bored’ in those final long weeks!  It’s also great for those keen to take a long holiday over Christmas, whether this be in Australia, the UK or another part of the world

Results

It’s all well and good to boast about a world-class education, but is that a recognised fact? Well, the results of AIS students serve as a true testament to the high-quality learning at the school.

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With a staggering 100 percent pass rate for IB students, you can’t argue with these results. Convincingly surpassing the global average of 70 percent, AIS students are leading the pack in their peer group. And the same can be said for HSC students, with eight students being named on the NSW HSC Distinguished Achievers List last year after achieving the highest grade-band possible.

The success starts early on for AIS students, with a phenomenal performance in the Year 10 IGCSE exams – last year the school achieved four ‘top in the world’ results in Maths, Business Studies, Food Technology and Drama,

AIS prides itself on executing a non-selective education system that supports every student – regardless of abilities, interests, or backgrounds – in achieving their potential. And, given the outstanding results, it seems that’s exactly what they do.

Aussie Rules – Skills for Life

No, not the sport (although there is plenty of that on offer!). Aussie Rules are a set of principles that dictate AIS’ unique approach to an inclusive and holistic learning environment.

They act as the touchstones for the whole curriculum and ensure students develop into well-rounded, accomplished adults.

These include Belonging, Determination, Ingenuity, Confidence, Ambition, Balance, Opportunity, Curiosity, Adaptability, Integrity, Belong (from the beginning), and Resilience.

Recognising there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ method to educating children, the exceptional teaching staff work to uncover the innate skills and characteristics in each child, supporting development as they grow. By nurturing these essential life skills, students not only excel in academia, but take a wisdom with them that remains with them for life.

Languages

Starting as young as two-years-old, AIS has daily Mandarin sessions in their Nursery class. From there, Secondary students have the choice of four languages in the IBDP – Mandarin, Indonesian (Bahasa), French, or Spanish – as part of the school’s comprehensive world language program, designed specifically to evoke cultural awareness.

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In our increasingly globalised world, it’s impossible to escape the necessity and advantage of having a second language under you belt. It makes you more competitive in an international job market and gives you a greater appreciation for another culture.

AIS works to make sure each child has the chance to develop this vital skill that’s so essential to succeeding in the 21st century world.

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