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By ITS Education Asia

Rob Earl, Vice Principal (Academic) at NLCS (Singapore) explains the importance of the School’s individualistic approach to academic challenge and pastoral care to students’ success.

High-performing international schools like NLCS (Singapore) are exciting places to work and learn, not least because of the amazing things our students achieve both during their time with us and after they move to the next stage in their lives. Indeed, in marketing materials and press releases it is all too easy to focus solely on students’ destinations, be they top universities or the world of international business. In day-to-day school life, though, it is at least as important that teachers consider where their students have come from as where they are going, if we are to ensure that each of them is on the right path.

One of the core values of our school is the belief that each student is unique, and that it is our responsibility to provide them with floors, not ceilings, so that we can nurture their individual talents, confidence and self-worth. In our school, it is essential that each student is known by all of their teachers, not just their tutor and their Head of House. Only by developing close working relationships between teacher and student can we achieve the quality of education we seek to provide.

While compiling the Curriculum Guides I have worked closely with our Heads of Department to ensure that the courses they have designed can be flexible and responsive, adapting to the needs of their students regardless of background or prior experience of the subject. Teachers at NLCS (Singapore) are encouraged to grasp every opportunity to enhance students’ learning, and sometimes that means deviating from the lesson plan to engage in a debate that arises from a student’s question or, on occasion, to dispel a myth or misconception that would hinder progress.

During conversations I have had with our parents they have—without exception—expressed excitement about our ambitious academic ethos, with its focus on scholarship and the in-depth study of individual subjects rather than interdisciplinary courses that sometimes lack focus and rigour. At the same time, though, there have been signs of trepidation amongst those whose children are joining us from schools with a different approach: will they (and even can they) make a success of the transition?

To those with such concerns, I say this: our absolute priority as a school is to provide each student with an outstanding educational experience, and that means academic and pastoral support that is tailored to their individual needs. From the start of the academic year, establishing the starting point for each child who joins us is the most important part of mapping out, and then guiding them along, the right path for their academic and personal development. Our teachers work hard from the very first day of school to understand the experiences, contexts and cultures that make their students who they are; only through doing this can we ensure that we provide them with everything they need to succeed.

Our system of wrap-around care and differentiated teaching ensure that no child falls through the net; each NLCS (Singapore) student is running their own race, with a different origin and a different destination to every other. NLCS schools embrace diversity, encourage independence and value the kind of risk-taking that sees a student join a brand new school with an exciting, ambitious, yet unfamiliar curriculum. We always seek to ‘find a way’ for each student, giving them the support, challenge and opportunities they need in order to thrive. I, for one, think that makes this a very special community indeed.

ABOUT NLCS (Singapore)

NLCS (Singapore) draws on its 170 rich history and tradition to provide students with an inspirational and life-changing educational experience that will ensure they become successful, well-rounded, and compassionate human beings. The NLCS (Singapore) curriculum has its roots in that of NLCS (UK), sharing its focus on academic rigour and scholarship whilst incorporating elements designed to cater for a truly international cohort aspiring to attend elite universities across the world.

The Campus is located on Depot Road and is just 10 minutes away from popular areas such as Orchard Road, Holland Village, Keppel Bay and the Central Business District of Singapore.

To learn more about NLCS (Singapore), email: [email protected]


Dulwich College Singapore

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