Dear Parents and Guardians,
I am delighted to report that our overall academic achievements for the Half Year have been excellent. In both Junior School and Prep School, boys have taken up Cambridge curricula with enthusiasm and renewed love of learning. Teachers report that classes are more dynamic, while Heads of School advise me that both campuses are very happy and productive. All in all, it proves that the way in which we teach and facilitate learning are the keys to classroom success. In addition, I am sure that parents are finding the new reporting format very helpful in pin-pointing the standards attained and where improvements can occur. Of course, I am quick to point out that many ‘improvements’ are purely developmental and a matter of time, confidence and practice. Boarding parents will be delighted with the very strong performance of their sons and the clear evidence that both the pastoral and academic structures are working very well. Boarding continues to grow (close to 400 boys) and from this we are seeing the making of fine young leaders.
Senior School results will be available shortly, but I am generally happy with the progress of senior boys. While they not only face heavy workloads in the classroom and a big jump from Prep School and O Levels in H1, the significant requirements that go hand-in-hand with university applications and testing make the final year H2, in particular, a challenging one. I would venture to say far more challenging than in ‘our’ years. Competition for places at universities is intense with no reduction in sight. We are doing our best to help boys balance this heavy schedule.
This term, we will be increasing the Harkness Table method to establish more discursive teaching and learning. When boys can discuss what they have learned and consider applications of knowledge then education is at its most effective. One of the objectives in this initiative is to get across to boys that they are as much responsible for their learning as are the teachers. Our other aim is to encourage senior students to think in ways that translate to higher education and educational independence.
The Re-opening of the Rab Pavilion took place on Thursday December 22. The Pavilion has been brought back to its original and best condition with superb renovations to the main room and changing rooms, as well as structure and roofing. Walls feature large photographs of historic cricket scenes at Aitchison and change rooms are honoured with photographs of Imran and Majid Khan. Our thanks to Syed Babar Ali for funding the much needed renovations and ‘old boy’ architect Faisal Haroon for his remarkable eye for sensitive restoration. A large gathering met for lunch and speeches in the Principal’s Garden. The ‘Old Boys’ defeated the Staff team in a special fixture.
In January, we will open the ACOBA Cricket Academy.
I wish all our families a very happy and safe holiday. We look forward to meeting ALL boys on Monday January 9.