The traditional structure of a school in which students are divided into discrete year groups based on age has been in place for a long time. While not perfect, it does serve some key operational purposes. However, anyone who has spent any time with children knows that they develop at different rates socially, emotionally, and physically. A student in Year 10 maybe twice the size of a Year 7 but lacks some of the maturity, wisdom, or practical knowledge of their younger peer, and vice versa. Keeping students separate only serves to limit their opportunities for personal growth and reinforce age-old hierarchies.
At Nord Anglia Manila, students of all year groups in secondary interact daily in both structured and semi-structured ways. Students across the age range spend significantly more time together than in any other school during morning and afternoon House Times, Create Your Future sessions, and ‘Enrichment Lessons’ (extra-curricular clubs). Additionally, throughout the term students have a myriad of opportunities to work, learn and collaborate in cross-curricular, competitive, and creativity-centered sessions. These times provide leadership opportunities to students of all ages and prompt students of different backgrounds, ages, genders, religions, and socioeconomic statuses to share ideas and challenge one another. This cross-phase interaction breaks down barriers and exposes students to new ways of thinking, learning, and doing.
The results speak for themselves. Our students are not only achieving academically (our IGCSE and A-Level results being some, if not the best in the country, and all Year 13 students have received offers to their first-choice universities), they are confident, creative, and already working to solve the problems of tomorrow.
One of the best examples of this is the upcoming Nord Anglia South-East Asia Regional STEAM Festival that NAIS Manila is leading, in which the climate-crisis is the focus. This will be the first ever STEAM Festival in the history of Nord Anglia Education that will see student leaders play a direct role in the devising and operation of the festival.