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Jakarta Intercultural School Offers Greater Academic Options for Student Learning

Grade 9 JIS - Planting Trip

Grade 10 students will be able to benefit from the many opportunities offered by JIS’ rigorous study programs.

Jakarta Intercultural School (JIS) is strengthening further its university preparation program for high school students by opening up Advanced Placement (AP®) courses to 10th graders in the 2021/22 academic year.

As a regional forerunner of international education for nearly seven decades, JIS credits its rigorous approach to learning as the key to its hard-earned reputation for successfully preparing students for university, especially 11th and 12th graders who are able to choose from both International Baccalaureate (IB®) and AP®) courses.

Jakarta Intercultural School Offers Greater Academic Options for Student Learning

The (AP®) program plays a major role in this endeavour, offering tertiary-level courses that offer college credits and more importantly, emphasise critical thinking, research, collaboration, and communication.

“The AP is a program that is recognised around the world. And its main goal is to equip students with the necessary study skills and mindset to transition into university with ease by giving them university-level materials, tasks, and responsibilities,” said JIS AP® coordinator Darren Seath.

“JIS has been offering the AP® for decades. Our program is so successful that each year, we have many Indonesian and international students enrolling at JIS for their final two years of high school just so they can take AP® courses under our guidance.”

One of these students is Gabriella, now in Grade 12, who has transferred from another international school in Jakarta to JIS specifically for its AP® courses. She conceded that her first few months in the AP® environment had been difficult, with the rapid pace of each course making her fall behind in assignments and deadlines. But she called the experience a “blessing in disguise”.

“Before the AP®, I had a lot of bad habits; I would always leave things to the last minute and I was always under a lot of stress. But since starting the program, I began to stop these habits,” she recalled.

“The intensity of the courses pushed me to stay on top of things and has completely changed my work ethic for the better.”

Asked to describe the program in three words, Gabriella chose intense, straightforward, and practical.

From JIS’ most recent graduation class, the class of 2020, 176 students participated in AP® courses, with a majority focusing on science (27 percent), social studies (25 percent), and mathematics (21 percent).

Demand for a spot in the academically rigorous program at JIS has only increased in recent years, especially with parents becoming more aware of the rapidly changing globalised world around them and what that means for their children’s future.

To accommodate more students and better prepare them for the workload that awaits in either the AP® or the IB® program in Grades 11 and 12, JIS will start offering AP® courses for Grade 10 students starting in August 2021 — the first school to do so in Jakarta and one of the very few in Asia.

“We want more students to benefit from the amazing academic opportunities offered by the AP®. Some of the many valuable skills they can gain by starting in Grade 10 are effective time management, as well as independent learning and problem-solving,” Seath said.

Jakarta Intercultural School Offers Greater Academic Options for Student Learning

But the question is, are 15 and 16-year-olds ready for such a demanding learning experience? Seath believes they are.

“People tend to underestimate this age group — including parents and the students themselves. At JIS, we see the amazing potential in these students, and it’s our duty to help them reach that potential every way we can. The AP® can help us achieve this.”

Offering some words of advice to potential AP® participants at JIS is JIS graduate Nitya, who is currently an economics major at Reeds College in Oregon, United States. First and foremost, she encouraged students to talk with JIS High School Counsellors in choosing their AP courses, because their counsellors can help students decide what’s best for their individual academic goals and help them look at the bigger picture.

“Universities appreciate a rigorous course load but also appreciate the breadth of classes you take, your passions, your extracurricular involvement, and your overall growth throughout high school,” she said.

Looking back at her experience with the AP® at JIS and comparing that with her current situation as a third-year undergraduate student, she said she felt grateful for the chance to challenge herself.

Jakarta Intercultural School Offers Greater Academic Options for Student Learning

“At the end of my senior year, I was able to think fast, condense knowledge in a concise manner, and manage my time better in a stressful setting. As someone who found my AP® classes challenging, it taught me to be resilient, ask for help constantly, and seek support from my peers and friends.”

AP® is a trademark registered by the College Board, which is not affiliated with and does not endorse this article.

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