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CIS provides a full schooling programme for 3 to 18 year olds with the university entrance qualification of Cambridge Advance Levels for the older students.
The curriculum at CIS is based upon the programmes of the University of Cambridge International group, starting with Cambridge Primary and moving through to IGCSE, AS and A Level in the senior years. The integrated international programmes ensure a smooth transition through the years of schooling and provide the opportunity for students to succeed in a stimulating, externally validated and highly respected world-class educational programme. Ultimately, the qualifications which can be obtained by our senior students can open the doors to universities all over the world. From the UK to Austria, Australia to the USA, Spain and here in Slovakia; Cambridge qualifications are universally recognised and welcomed.
Although we use the Cambridge Curriculum which is adapted from the UK National Curriculum we are a truly international school and proud to be so!
Primary school years
The Cambridge framework provides curricula for the key subjects of English (or English as an Additional Language), Mathematics and Science. Other subjects are based upon the English National Curriculum. They include Art, Geography, History, ICT (Computers), Music, Physical Education, and Personal and Social Education. German and Spanish as a second language is taught from Year 4 and Slovak for native speakers from Year 2 in line with the Slovak school curriculum.
The Cambridge and National Curriculum programmes provide statements of content, knowledge, skills and understanding, and attainment target levels for all the subjects we teach other than Slovak, German and Spanish. There is a huge range of resources available to assist teachers and the school purchases widely but particularly from the UK.
However, academic subjects are only half of the story. Where we believe we excel is in putting the child and his or her needs and situation first. So not only do we recognise that each child is individual, but also that every day is different and each provides another opportunity for success and happiness.
Secondary school years
The lower secondary years are characterised by an increasingly focused approach with specialist teachers for all subjects. This ensures that not only are students developing their knowledge and skills but that they are also prepared for the rigours of the examination courses which begin with the Cambridge IGCSE from Year 10.
The final two years of schooling are dedicated to the Advanced Subsidiary and Advanced Level examination courses of the University of Cambridge. Recognised around the world for university entrance they offer students the flexibility of a completely free choice of subjects. So a student could specialise in the sciences, the arts or languages, or take a broad range of subjects from across different disciplines. As well as these high-level examination courses, CIS is also able to support students with different aspirations such as a focus upon developing English language skills whilst obtaining a school leaving diploma. We recognise that a dedication to academic courses is not the right fit for all, so we are flexible in our offering and support individual learning needs.
Cambridge IGCSE Curriculum
IGCSE (International General Certificate of Secondary Education) is a two year programme leading to externally set, marked and certificated examinations from the University of Cambridge. It is a unique UK government endorsed programme provided to thousands of schools around the world.
Our students are offered a curriculum across Years 10 and 11 that includes around 9 IGCSE examination subjects. These include the core ones of English Language, Mathematics and Science (either as a double award subject or a combination of single subjects from Biology, Chemistry and Physics). Three or four other subjects might be taken from Geography, History, German, ICT (Information and Communication Technology), English Literature, Additional Mathematics and perhaps a self-study first language. Exactly what is available in a particular year will depend upon a number of factors. What is ensured is suitability for our students and the key curriculum factors of breadth and balance. Depth and quality goes without saying with all Cambridge courses!
Cambridge AS and A Level Curriculum
The General Certificate of Education Advanced Level, or A Level, is the ‘gold standard’ of Cambridge qualifications. It is accepted as an entry qualification by universities of the European Union and elsewhere around the world. A Level examinations are usually taken after 13 years of education and are based on approximately 360 hours of guided learning per subject, normally over a two year period. A Levels are highly specialised and a student will normally take three subjects, although occasionally exceptional students take four or five.