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RISE programme paves the way to IB Diploma

22 July 2014

In a recent staff meeting I asked the question, what qualities would you like to see in anew teacher – what sort of colleagues do we want to join us at Regents? It was a fascinating session and we agreed on our top ten ‘signposts’. Furthermore, our students carried out the same exercise and, happily, there was much overlap!

Some qualities were, perhaps, predictable – friendly, supportive; some were contextual – culturally sensitive, internationally minded; and some were simply inspiring – dream with me, imagine with me. At the top of both lists was a wonderfully simple quality, a ‘can-do attitude’.

There is no doubt that schools, both those in Thailand and beyond, are hugely complex and challenges arise on a daily basis. There are also long-term challenges requiring considerable thought, discussion and debate. Whether small or large, a school’s ability to meet these challenges is largely dependent on the attitude of the staff. At Regents we exude a can-do attitude. No issue is too large. Every problem has a solution. The default position of the staff is: we can do this. By using our own substantial expertise, as well as the skills of all of our Nord Anglia Education colleagues, we are a formidable problem-solving team. Take our language ‘challenge’. Clearly, many of our students use English as a second, third…language. Rather than being a problem, we see this an exciting and enriching opportunity to build upon our Round Square philosophy. However, it does present a practical problem; all of our qualifications require a mastery of the English language – IGCSEs and International Baccalaureate.

So, what to do? DO NOT refuse students access to our wonderful community because their English proficiency is in its infancy. DO provide courses and support which allows them to develop their proficiency whilst gradually accessing the wider curriculum. When they are ready, ensure they are fully submerged in the appropriate qualification – this is true personalised learning in action. This can-do attitude has resulted in the birth of a new curriculum at Regents called RISE (Regents International Study and English). This ground-breaking programme allows our older students to focus on their key learning needs in preparation for the IB programme. It is already proving very popular. 

Garry Russell, Head of Secondary School