The World’s Only Tri-Curricula School
Written by Alvin Hew
SIS Group of Schools, Board Director
Recently, the QS World University Rankings were published and the National University of Singapore (NUS) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU) – 2 universities from Singapore – were ranked jointly as the 11th best universities in the world behind MIT, Stanford, Harvard, Oxford, CalTech, ETH Zurich, Cambridge, UCL, Imperial College London and Chicago, making them the best universities in Asia ahead of the likes of Tsinghua, Peking, Tokyo, Hong Kong and HKUST who are in the Top 30. This puts NUS and NTU in very prestigious company indeed.
Feeding into NUS and NTU are students from the Singapore education system which is the No. 1-ranked PISA Worldwide Ranking country for Math, Science and Reading by the OECD. Over half a million 15-year-olds from 80 countries and economies took the PISA test in 2018. They were tested in reading, mathematics and science with a focus on reading. In addition, students in some countries took tests on financial literacy and on global competence.
Many students from surrounding are sent by their parents or win scholarships to attend school in Singapore because it is very rare to find any international schools offering the Singapore curriculum.
International schools focus on one if not two curricula. Many opt to teach using the Cambridge curriculum while more and more international schools are opting for the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum. Today, many use a blend of the two: often starting with IB’s Primary Years Program (PYP) transitioning to Cambridge’s IGCSE before ending with IB’s Diploma Program (IBDP). Others start with Cambridge up until IGCSE and end with the IBDP. Very few would in fact offer the Singapore curriculum.
There is however one school that is well-versed with and uses the Singapore curriculum: The SIS Group of Schools (SIS). SIS uses the Singapore curriculum for its Pre- and Primary schools due to its Singapore heritage of being created with the help of Singapore’s Ministry of Education in 1996. It continues to use the Singapore curriculum because it provides the best foundation for students to progress to the next level such as the Cambridge curriculum which is used for its Secondary School students who would get the IGCSE certificate – and is internationally recognised – upon completion of Year 10 after which the students progress to complete either their A levels or IBDP.
This makes SIS a rare if not the only school in the world that offers 3 different curricula in one school and giving its students access to the best education systems the world has to offer. We at SIS work hard to seamlessly tie these 3 systems together so that our children have the very best foundation in Math, Science and Languages (English, Chinese, Indian) before taking on a content-heavy program like Cambridge setting them up for an approach to learning that is more university-like with IBDP that demands a lot of student-initiated project work.
If students are to thrive and succeed in the 21st century, we believe that it pays to give them the best the world has to offer that is: a tri-curricula education system that includes also the Singapore curriculum.