AIS Wins ‘Singapore International School of the Year’
With 34 international schools and 3 esteemed judges, the Australian International School is proud to announce we are voted the Gold winner in the HoneyKids Asia Singapore Education Awards 2022 as ‘Singapore International School Of The Year’.
The below outlines our winning submission.
How the Australian International School ensures every student reaches their full potential: ‘Positive Education and Value Added.’
At AIS, a school’s most important objective is ensuring that every student realises their full potential. Our journey to making this objective come true started in 2012 when we developed the School’s Mission Statements and committed that every student ‘realises their potential.’
MISSION: ‘To enable our students to realise their potential through exceptional opportunities within a nurturing community which equips them to flourish in life and to make a difference for good.
The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania, 2022.
Positive Education at AIS
This belief led AIS to adapt Martin Seligman’s ‘Positive Education and Wellbeing’ principles and framework throughout our three sub-schools. Our commitment to ensuring our students flourish and live meaningful lives led us to embed well-being at the heart of everything we do. Notably, this framework is based on the belief that we are continuously working towards being the best version of ourselves and reflecting on the five domains of Seligman’s PERMA framework.
AIS is committed to providing exceptional opportunities outside our academic curriculum as these are where students experience holistic success whilst developing skills for life, including diversity, identity, respectful relationships, resilience and an understanding of how to make a positive difference in the world.
- Our Extensive Co-Curricula Activities (CCA’s over 300 different activities)
- School sports teams: basketball, netball, sevens and touch rugby, and many more
- Competitive sports teams, rugby, football, basketball, cricket and many more
- School Sporting Clubs: basketball, swimming, netball and gymnastics
- After school and lunchtime activities: Computer programming, Minecraft, lego building, chess, cooking and many more
- External activities, rock climbing, golf, surfing and many more
Other activities outside our CCA program are
- Outdoor Education Programme
- Community projects such as beach cleaning
- International Charity: Cambodia House Building and Schools for Schools in Nepal
- Duke of Edinburgh Awards
- Junior United Nations Assembly
- Student Leadership Group
“We want to make the school happy and more vibrant through added Sharks spirit at all school events.” Alison Kinneally, Head Girl
Ali, Head Girl was taking action through ‘Sharks club/sporting spirit.’
The deliberate teaching of Positive Education starts at an early age, with the Early Years adopting the teaching of self-regulation to students. One of our highly educated Early Years educators, Alesha Spencer talks passionately about self-regulation and how all educators in the early years follow this philosophy.
As Martin Seligman states, a school can educate students about aspects of leading a positive and fulfilling life. In the Secondary School, the day starts with a 30-minute “STRIVE lesson’ (Strength, Thriving, Resilience, International Mindfulness, Values and Enjoyment) where many different topics are deliberately taught to the students.
‘There is substantial evidence from well-controlled studies that skills that increase resilience, positive emotion, engagement and meaning can be taught to schoolchildren (Seligman, 2009).
Positive Education at AIS, 2022
Furthermore, the School has gone beyond simply adopting the teachings of positive education and has developed sophisticated processes and systems which guide students in their AIS journey and beyond.
Individual Data Dashboard
AIS has developed an internal personalised data dashboard for every student that ensures multiple data points are collated in one central location. This data board ensures we can monitor every child’s emotional and academic well-being, which leads us to coin the phrase “Academic Well-being’.
We do this by making the Academic well-being of our students an absolute priority. One of the many tools we use to support our world-class, holistic education is our ‘CARES’ online survey; (Connection, Attitude, Relationships, Engagement and Safety).
Four times a year, students complete the online survey. The data derived from this is used to inform conversations about a student’s academic well-being and provide the appropriate support and direction where and when required. CARES is designed to ensure that a student’s voice can shine through to capture how they feel about schooling, relationships and most importantly themselves.
‘I think it’s really important for students to find a balance between studies, sport, and social life and to help other students find a balance is something we would like to help others with.’ Hamish Barrett, Head Boy 2022
Hamish, our Head Boy, championed the effort to teach other students about balance in their lives and the importance of this.
This rich student data feeds into a learner profile and is monitored by the School’s Wellbeing Team. This team consists of, STRIVE teachers (pastoral teachers), Heads of Year, Wellbeing Coordinators and School Counsellors. Students can directly ask to speak to someone, a significant adult, which immediately triggers a school response to help the student.
Value Added: What is it, and how is it calculated?
In Years 9-12, personalised student dashboards contain each student’s ‘Predicted Grades’ from testing they do through the Cambridge University Centre of Educational Monitoring (CEM) assessment ‘ALIS’ and gl assessment’s ‘CAT4’. These in-depth cognitive assessments help to predict the grades the students are capable of achieving at the end of their IGCSE and IBDP/HSC exams.
Our experienced teachers form a comprehensive view of each student in their care. They know every student, their capabilities, learning styles and emotional state. Teachers can help elevate every student at the earliest possible point and allow for classroom differentiation in the learning journey of each student.
The students’ most recent reports and assessment grades are stored on the data dashboards. In a comprehensive combination, these data points enable the School to predict the heights a student may attain. The School develops individualised plans. We see our academic and pastoral teams work collaboratively to ensure every child flourish on their journey.
The proof of this incredibly robust approach comes with our IGCSE and IBDP/HSC results. It’s not the actual results that are the evidence but the ‘Value Added’ score generated by the results.
Many Schools undertake the baseline tests before their students embark on their IGCSE, HSC or IBDP journey; therefore, their performance can be compared to their predicted grade. This comparative score is ‘Value added’ with a positive figure meaning students outperform their baseline potential. A ‘good school’ should achieve a combined averaged value added score of ‘0’ as this indicates the School helped the student reach their expected potential. An ‘exceptional school’ could get a score of 0.5-1.0.
In 2022 our average ‘Value Added’ score was an exceptionally high 1.02, which equates to an entire grade on average per student resulting in a student achieving a whole IB point more than predicted and students sitting IGCSE grade moved up one grade, for example, a B to an A or an A to A*.
This ‘Value Added’ is the evidence that a school’s pastoral and academic programs are working in tandem to ensure every child ‘reaches their potential’ and ‘exceeds expectations’. This value add is impressive as we are a non-select academic entry school meaning every potential student is worthy of an AIS education.
This aspiration leads us to conclude that we have successfully implemented our school’s vision by having proof that our students do indeed ‘consistently exceed expectations’, and our value-added scores certainly validate this belief.
VISION: ‘AIS strives to be a globally recognised centre of educational excellence whose students consistently exceed expectations and are committed to addressing the needs of our world.’
To conclude, we are very proud of how we ensure the students who attend our School flourish and get the very best opportunity to reach their full potential and this we believe is every parents desired outcome for their children’s education.
Seligman, M.E., Ernst, R.M., Gillham, J., Reivich, K. and Linkins, M., 2009. Positive education: Positive psychology and classroom interventions. Oxford review of education, 35(3), pp.293-311.
At AIS, we prioritize the academic wellbeing of our students. If you’re keen to know more about our approach, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us here.