Education in a 21st century learning environment is so much more than being well-equipped with the latest digital hardware and software. For GESS – International School, a not-for-profit school that has been nurturing future generations for more than 50 years in Singapore, the formula is a 360-degree approach to education for its students.
Upholding its belief that education goes beyond conventional academic excellence, GESS prides itself on the holistic development and wellbeing of every student, enabling them to thrive socially and emotionally. This places student wellbeing at the core of not only what GESS does, but also how, as it provides them with unparalleled opportunities and support throughout their learning journey.
Vice Principal of GESS, Mr. Joram Hutchins says, “We believe a 360-degree approach to education benefits students, paving the way for personalised holistic education and personal – not just academic – excellence. This extends to taking care of our students’ social health and emotional wellbeing, future pathways, and interests and passion in areas such as languages, creative arts, sports and even social learning. Moving with the global shift towards a highly digital and dynamic society, GESS already counts cutting-edge technology and collaborative spaces as part of our hardware. A well-rounded education will further enable and empower GESS students to develop essential life skills such as communication, problem-solving and teamwork, shaping them into confident, global citizens who can contribute positively to tomorrow’s world.”
To ensure the best schoolwide implementation and communication within its GESS community, developments have been streamlined and are underway from the current academic year. Some areas include:
- Student wellbeing comprising pastoral care, counselling and safeguarding. Initiatives include adopting international standards and best practices (such as International School Counselling Association (ISCA)’s), integrating these into school policies and programmes (such as enhancing its homeroom teacher concept), as well as a new Wellbeing Centre.
- Languages, culture and more, enriching the GESS educational experience by complementing a student’s classroom learning with opportunities and exposure outside. Initiatives include creative arts programme enhancements (such as festivals and artists in residence), elevating its sports programmes to new heights, and strengthening local community relations for service learning.
- Future pathways, preparing its students for jobs that may not even exist now, through skills developed from a concept-based curriculum, as well as real life exposure to industry experience. This support will be extended to younger grades to guide them earlier.
- Student first campus, involving a series of not only massive enhancements and refurbishments, but also creation of new, dedicated spaces such as an arts studio and an outdoor learning forest.
- Academic excellence engineered by high quality teaching and learning, for data-driven evidence to refine curriculum, teaching strategies and learning environment. Initiatives include school-wide inclusive programmes to better support students, and providing advanced learning opportunities for high-achieving students.
Details will be progressively unveiled, among which a new website will chronicle this strategic journey by GESS. Follow its developments on: