INFORMATION FOR UNIVERSITY AND COLLEGE ADMISSIONS TEAMS
MISSION & VALUES
The English School of Kyrenia endeavours to develop young people who are principled, inquiring and open-minded communicators with a lifelong love of learning. The school aims to inspire students to serve as compassionate global citizens through our challenging international educational programmes.
IMPACT ON LEARNING FOR OUR 2021 GRADUATING CLASS
Size of Graduating Class in 2021: 42
All schools in the TRNC (Turkish Republic of North Cyprus) were ordered to physically close on 10th March 2020. The ESK team worked quickly and tirelessly to ensure that learning and support for all ESK students continued, through various virtual platforms such as Moodle, and Zoom. Our virtual classrooms were up and running within 2 days of lockdown. Our chosen virtual learning platform, Moodle, initially allowed for material to be uploaded for Sixth Formers for guided study. Within a week, online live lessons, via Zoom, were in place.
Challenges faced in the new Academic year 2020-2021
In the summer, the Ministry of Education in the TRNC announced that schools would open physically on 1st September. In late August, this date was re-advised as 14th September. In week one of September, this was again revised to 12th October. Whilst schools worked to put in place very strict COVID safety precautions, students’ start to the year was delayed. We took the decision as a school to forego online teaching between 1st-11th September in order to prepare for physical opening on 14th September, believing that this would be a more efficient means of instruction.
With the second delay, ESK went online from 14th September until 9th October.
Whilst teachers and students had, by then, adjusted to the technical workings of online learning, internet issues in the TRNC still disrupted learning for numerous students.
Again, lessons were reduced from 60 to 45 minutes to allow for some respite from screens and sitting. Clearly, this impacted the amount of material delivered.
Additionally, students have supervised study sessions on their timetable when physically at school. The value of this as structured study time, with teacher help available was not experienced by students until 12th October, meaning that they struggled to structure their time at home. Whilst pastoral guidance was given on time management, stress management and scheduling, structuring a school day is easier when physically at school.
Travel restrictions have delayed the return of several Sixth Formers to school, meaning that whilst physical instruction started for their peers on 12th October, they have been dialling into lessons via Zoom. Despite teacher efforts, this has inevitably resulted in feelings of distance, missing out and stress.
Chronic illnesses have prevented the return of some Sixth Formers to school, again meaning that whilst physical instruction started for their peers on 12th October, they have been dialling into lessons via Zoom. Despite teacher efforts, this has inevitably resulted in feelings of distance, missing out and stress.
The challenges were as follows from March to July 2020:
Students and teachers had to cope with significant technical issues, such as sudden Wi-Fi restrictions or losses, circumstances beyond their control.
Due to the very sudden lockdown, numerous students did not have their books and notes. Lockdown was initially announced as 3 school days and then extended repeatedly for a few weeks at a time. Students were not able to return to school to retrieve their books and other learning materials.
Teachers also did not have access to all their physical teaching resources (books/handouts etc).
Students and teachers had to learn to use Moodle’s features (e.g. assignment uploads and feedback features) and this took some time. Previously, only a handful of teachers used a few features of other online platforms (e.g. Edmodo and Google Classroom) mostly as a means of sharing materials and instructions with students. The wholesale move to Moodle/Zoom required a sudden and significant adjustment, attended by its own psychological impact and pressure on teachers, who, on the whole, rose to the challenge admirably.
Teacher-student interactions (very frequent at school) were restricted due to the nature of online teaching and learning.
The nature of content delivered and the manner in which it could be delivered were significantly impacted/restricted.
Real time classroom feedback and teacher assistance and encouragement were compromised.
Lesson times had to be adjusted down from 60 to a maximum of 45 minutes (to allow for rest from screen time and sitting for students and even teachers), influencing the amount of content that could be delivered.
Internal assessments could not take place with the normal levels of vigilance and strictness.
Students had several weeks of anxiety and stress until the status of their AS exams were clarified. During that time, they did not have the same school access to teachers in terms of preparing for exams. Neither did they have the usual constance and reassuring access to pastoral care through the homeroom tutors and the school counsellor because the greater focus was on providing online instructional time so that they would not fall behind in case exams went ahead as scheduled of in a modified manner.
Following the announcement of “no summer exams”, students faced renewed anxious regarding how grades would be calculated. Whilst this was clarified by the school as soon as information was received from the examination boards, it did not reduce the understandable psychological stress upon the students.
CURRENT UPDATE: As of 4th January, students have been learning online.. While school remain online, many of our students attend campus for their external exams.
QUALIFICATIONS, GRADING SYSTEM & DISTRIBUTION
All students must complete the local national Lise Diplomasi (High School Diploma) requirements of the Ministry of Education and if they are successful, they are awarded the Lise Diplomasi upon graduation in Year 13 (US Grade 12). This diplomaawards them a high-school CGPA out of 10: 9-10 being excellent, 7-8 good, 5-6 satisfactory and 4-1 unsatisfactory.
In addition to the above requirement, students choose and complete one of the two international curriculums: UK GCE A-Level programme or the IBDP.
Ranking: We do not provide students with a class rank.
All students progress to Higher Education, with majority applying to UK Universities. Our Year 13 cohort typically ranges from 30 -50 students. With smaller class sizes, students have the opportunity to contribute to lessons and have more one-to-one interaction with teachers.
A-Level Results (2019)
Notes: In addition to the required 3 to 4 subjects in the A Level Programme, students need to take Turkish, English, Turkish History, Physical Education and complete 150 hours of community service hours.
IB Results (2019)
Notes: In addition to the required 6 IB subjects, extended essay, theory of knowledge, and 150 hours of creativity, action & servicein the IBDP, students need to take Turkish, Turkish History and Physical Education.
IBDP Centre No: 4596
UCAS Centre No: 46489
Cambridge International Examinations Centre No: CY012
Edexcel Centre No: 90361
Society of Heads membership
Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus Ministry of Education
The Duke of Edinburgh International Award Centre.
Students and teachers are operating on a day-by-day basis. Whilst giving their all in vastly modified physical and virtual systems (safety measures, document attached) we are all working with uncertainty in the sense that at any time, schools may be declared closed again.
We have extensive contingency plans should it be necessary for large groups of students (or, in the case of another local or national lockdown) to learn at a distance. Three learning scenarios have been planned; face-to-face teaching (fully open), Blended-learning, Online Learning (where schools are physically closed). We have PSHE and pastoral guidance in place for students to help them become accustomed to the new normal. Nevertheless, unprecedented levels of anxiety and uncertainty amongst students (related to school, exams and universities) exists and needs to be taken into account.