Admission and Placement Policy
ARIS is an IB World School
ARIS Core Purpose
“We are a diverse community of learners that are committed to inspire, empower and transform for a better world.”
ARIS Core Values
- Greatness in Everyone
- Learning with Everyone
- Creativity and Innovation by Everyone
- Service to Everyone
- Change for Everyone
- Responsibility and Respect
- Passion and Mindfulness
- Collaboration and Communication
- Reflection and Action
IB Mission Statement
The International Baccalaureate aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable, and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.
To this end, the organization works with schools, governments, and international organizations to develop challenging programmes of international education and rigorous assessment.
These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate, and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.
ARIS offers the following programmes:
- The International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme (PYP)
- The International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme (MYP)
- The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme. (IBDP)
- The International Baccalaureate Career Programme. (IBCP)
TABLE OF CONTENT
ADMISSION TO PLAYGROUP 8
ADMISSION TO PRIMARY YEARS PROGRAMME (PYP) 8
ADMISSION TO SECONDARY SCHOOL YEARS 9
MYP 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 9
ADMISSION TO SECONDARY SCHOOL IBDP AND IBCP 1 & 2 10
UNIVERSITY AND CAREER GUIDANCE 13
POLICY REVIEW 15
The ARIS Admissions Policy and the concomitant procedures are characteristic of a young, vigorous and rapidly expanding international school. Most importantly, the policy is inclusive rather than exclusive, enabling, insofar as is possible, equity of access to the high-quality learning environment that ARIS strives to offer.
This document depicts the relevant policy and its context, outlines certain of the procedures whereby the policy is affected, and where a further explanation may be appropriate, provides some account of the rationale.
The roots of ARIS are grounded in an indigenous Ghanaian population. However, the student body also reflects much diversity, stemming from relatively mobile families often linked to the world beyond Ghana's borders and beyond the region of West Africa, for example, commercial businesses (at the sole trader, corporate and multinational levels), non-governmental organisations (NGOs) charitable foundations and diplomatic missions.
Collectively, youngsters (now at any age between 2 and 19) whose parents seek their enrolment are exposed to an international Weltanschauung from the outset, if only because of peer diversity. International-mindedness is stimulated by everyday social interactions as well as the intrinsic elements of the school's globally-referenced curricular content, which is conducive to developing global perspectives. The school community is characterised by a shared commitment to the core purpose, values, and characteristics. It drives all aspects of school life, including school admissions.
By now the reader will be asking ‘What exactly must my child do to enrol at ARIS?' The reader should already have visited the website and clicked on the ‘Enrol Now' button to begin to engage in the form-filling and information-gathering process. Student admission is facilitated by an application form and supporting documents. This form requires that the child’s parent or legal guardian accepts the school’s General Terms and Conditions of Enrolment.
The first point of reference for ARIS personnel handling admissions is the applicant supporting documents, including student's current and/or previous school report(s). A judgment will be made as to the extent to which the report is authentic and a reliable basis for decisions. There is no general admissions test. However, to ensure that ARIS can meet a student’s learning needs, comprehensive information must be provided along with a cognitive assessment that will be given to determine the student’s reasoning ability for all pupils entering Year 3-13.
Once all of the required supporting documents, interview, second language placement and cognitive assessment results have been received, the application is reviewed by the Admission Manager and the Head of School. In some cases, additional information may be requested or further assessments may also be required prior to a seat offer.
The Admissions Manager will offer/decline admission in writing. If admission is offered the applicant will receive a welcome letter, followed by the tuition invoice. If the admission is denied the reason will be clearly stated and the applicant’s place on the waiting list will be included.
Because youngsters in different parts of the world begin formal schooling at markedly different chronological ages, a useful preliminary reference might be the chart Year/Class/Grade showing the correlation between chronological age and the levels at ARIS. The terminology at ARIS uses ‘Year', such as a student in Year 6, in Year 9, or whatever.
ADMISSION TO PLAYGROUP
Playgroup, the first stage of school life known as the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS). This is the Pre-Nursery year. For admission to Playgroup, the eligibility criterion is that the child should be 2 years old by 1 September of their year of enrolment.
ADMISSION TO PRIMARY YEARS PROGRAMME (PYP) NURSERY – YEAR 6
ARIS offers the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme (PYP) from Nursery class through Year 6 (ages 3-11). For applicants applying to Nursery, the eligibility criterion is that the child should be 3 years old by 1 September of their year of enrolment. For applicants applying to Reception Class through Year 6, please refer to the chart Year/Class/Grade.
ADMISSION TO PRIMARY YEARS PROGRAMME (PYP) Personalised Learning Department
All pupils who come under the English as a Second Language (ESL), Special Education Needs (SEN), Individual Education Plan (IEP), or Individual Language Plan (ILP) are placed in the Personalised Learning Department. Eligibility is based on our ability to provide service to the applicant, and the potential of the applicant to benefit from the Personalised Learning services available.
The final decision on grade placement will be taken by the school based on all the information gathered through the application process. ARIS reserves the right to deny admission or re-enrollment to any applicant if, in its opinion, there were reasons to believe that admission or re-enrollment would not be in the best interest of the applicant or ARIS. We also reserve the right to postpone admission, if a class is full. In this case, the applicant is placed on a waiting list. The qualified applicants are then accepted in order of date of application, subject to the above priorities.
The final decision on grade placement will be taken by the Head of School based on all the information gathered through the application process.
ADMISSION TO SECONDARY SCHOOL YEARS
MYP 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
If the child is age-appropriate for MYP 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 (Years 7 – 11), a cognitive assessment will be given to determine the student’s reasoning ability.
The entrance assessments and the school report(s) inform the appropriate placement of new students and provide prospective teachers with a profile of the applicant's attainment in the relevant subject areas. The assessment also functions as a diagnostic instrument, highlighting anomalies and providing the basis of an Individual Educational Plan (IEP) compiled by the Personalised Learning Coordinator. As the title indicates, the IEP is specific to the student. It directly addresses his or her academic needs, identifies ‘SMART' goals, appropriate teaching strategies to reach them, and a timeline for review.
The entrance assessments and IEPs as described above are appropriate to applicants for MYP 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 at any point in the academic year.
If after the commencement of the academic year an applicant is seeking admission to either Year 10 or 11, entrance assessments are of necessity. The more time which has elapsed since the beginning of the MYP 4 & 5, the more difficult it will be fully to meet the needs of the applicant. A lot of catch-up work may be required, or in extreme cases, a subject may need to be abandoned altogether. The ARIS Faculty can be relied upon to do their utmost to resolve such problems in the best interests of the student.
Appropriate placement in an MYP or IBDP/IBCP course can therefore only be achieved when the subject matter already covered by the applicant substantially matches that already covered in the course(s) to which s/he seeks admission. If there is no substantial overlap, bringing the new student into alignment with the progress already made by his or her peers, particularly in content-laden subjects, maybe impossible. Subjects, where greater emphasis is placed on skills rather than content, may be less problematic.
ADMISSION TO SECONDARY SCHOOL IBDP AND IBCP 1 & 2
The admission of ARIS students to the International Baccalaureate Diploma or Career-related Programme (IBDP/IBCP) is not automatic. Scheduled in March/April each year is the first phase of DP/CP orientation for MYP-5. It is designed to facilitate a clear understanding of the IBDP/CP in general, and its interpretation, principles, and practices at ARIS in particular. Before addressing the individual circumstances of each student, the first phase of the IBDP/CP orientation is predicated on the assumption that every student will be offering the full Diploma, IBCP, or IB Course.
Students have access to Higher Level and Standard Level subjects not offered by ARIS through Pamoja's online learning, allowing access to a broader choice of subjects for the IB Diploma. The online learning through Pamoja comes at an additional tuition fee.
The core of Creativity, Action, Service (CAS), Theory of Knowledge (TOK) and the Extended Essay (EE), plus three Higher and three Standard Level subjects. Students' preliminary subject choices will be similarly predicated, and similarly ambitious.
The program’s three-part framework comprises the study of at least two IBDP courses with career-related studies and the distinctive IBCP core that connects students chosen IBDP courses and Career-Related studies and helps students to develop skills and competencies required for lifelong learning.
The heart of the IBCP is the IBCP core components. The core components contain:
- Personal and Professional Skill (Internally Assessed)
- Language development (Internally Assessed)
- Reflective project (externally assessed)
The core of Creativity, Action, Service (CAS), Extended Essay (EE) and Theory of Knowledge (TOK), plus Students must take a minimum of 3 High Level (HL) and 3 Standard Level (SL) or opt for 4 HL and 2 SL. Students' preliminary subject choices will be similarly predicated, and similarly ambitious.
All students at the IBDP/CP level in ARIS will be expected to meet the DP/CP requirements and fully participate in all classes. It is important that all students have a strong grasp of the underlying philosophy of the DP/CP, and that whatever permutation of subjects they may offer, according to their individual circumstances and needs. They do not engage in their DP/CP subjects in isolation but have a sense of the holistic nature of the programme, its intention to educate the whole person, and its potential impact on their future lives.
The IBDP/IBCP is academically rigorous. To be assured of a subject profile that enables eligibility for the award of the full Diploma and full IBCP Certificate currently enrolled students should be seeking to attain:
To earn the IB Diploma, students must meet these requirements:
- Grades Performance in each subject is graded on a scale of 7 points (maximum) down to 1 point (minimum).
- Performance in theory of knowledge and the extended essay are each graded on a scale of A (maximum) to E (minimum).
- The CAS requirement is not assessed.
- For the IB Diploma, a maximum of 3 points is awarded for combined performance in theory of knowledge and the extended essay.
- The maximum total DP points score is 45
Award of the IB Diploma
All assessment components for each of the six subjects and the additional Diploma requirements must be completed in order to qualify for the award of the IB Diploma, except under the conditions stipulated below.
The IB Diploma will be awarded to a candidate provided all the following requirements have been met.
- CAS requirements have been met
- The candidate’s total points are 24 or more
- There is no “N” awarded for theory of knowledge, the extended essay or for a contributing subject
- There is no grade E awarded for theory of knowledge and/or the extended essay. e. There is no grade 1 awarded in a subject/level
- There are no more than two grade 2s awarded (HL or SL)
- There are no more than three grade 3s or below awarded (HL or SL)
- The candidate has gained 12 points or more on HL subjects (for candidates who register for four HL subjects, the three highest grades count)
- The candidate has gained 9 points or more on SL subjects (candidates who register for two SL subjects must gain at least 5 points at SL)
- The candidate has not received a penalty for academic misconduct from the Final Award Committee
- A maximum of three examination sessions is allowed in which to satisfy the requirements for the award of the IB Diploma. The examination sessions need not be consecutive
Requirements for entry to the IB Diploma Programme for ARIS students coming from the MYP programme
- A minimum of 30 points from the MYP courses
- A minimum of a grade 4 in all MYP subjects for (IBDP-SL) and a minimum of a grade 5 in all MYP subjects for (IBDP-HL)
- Any grade lower than 4 with any specific valid reason will strictly be dealt with on a case to case basis
- Failure to submit the MYP personal project will not be permitted to be a full CP or DP candidate
Entry requirements to the IBDP for outside students coming from any other programme
- Minimum of C and above in 5 Subjects (or 65%)
- B and above for any Higher level DP Subjects (or 75%)
- Lower score (65% and below) with any specific valid reason will strictly be dealt with on a case to case basis
Requirements for entry to the IB Career-related Programme for ARIS students coming from the MYP programme
- A minimum of a grade 5 in three MYP subjects for (IBCP-HL)
- A minimum of 18 points from the MYP courses
- A minimum of a grade 3 in all MYP subjects (IBCP-SL)
- Any score lower than 3 with any specific valid reason will strictly be dealt with on a case to case basis
- Failure to submit the MYP personal project will not be permitted to be a full CP or DP candidate
Entry requirements to the IBCP for Outside students coming from any other programme
- Minimum of C (or 65%) and above in 4 Subjects
- Minimum of B (or 75%) and above for any Higher level CP Subjects
- Lower score with any specific valid reason will strictly be dealt with on a case to case basis
*All students coming from another school or country will take a Cognitive Ability Test, called CAT 4 (GL Assessment).
To earn the IB career Related program, students must meet these requirements:
- Take a career-related course BTEC Level 3 / SCAD 25 credits and satisfy both the school and awarding body (Edexcel/ Pearson or SCAD). SCAD comes at an additional tuition fee and grade must be kept at a minimum 3.5 GPA or students may be required to retake the course.
- Complete Service learning Experience
- Complete Personal and Professional Skills
- Complete a Reflective project and obtain grades A-D
- Complete language development portfolio based on language development course or course extension
- Take a minimum of 2 DP subjects (SL) with Examination.
*Examinations are administered after 2 years of study under strictly controlled conditions.
Entry requirements to the IBDP Course for ARIS/ outside students coming from any other programme
- Minimum of D (or 50%) and above in 4 Subjects
*Students coming from another school or country will have to take a Cognitive Ability Test, called CAT 4 (GL Assessment).
UNIVERSITY AND CAREER GUIDANCE
The ARIS University and Career Guidance Counselling Programme is a comprehensive, developmental program designed to assist students in making and implementing informed educational and occupational choices. This programme seeks to provide developmental and systematic support to each student to ensure their academic, career, personal and social development and achievement. The counsellors are professional school advocates who provide proactive and preventative support to maximize student potential.
The programmes and interventions offered to students are delivered collaboratively with school staff, families and members of the community to offer seamless transitions to each student’s next steps.
The ultimate goal of our programmes is that each student from ARIS will transition smoothly to the next level of education with a clear sense of direction as to which career to pursue, which subjects to study and eventually graduate with a personal, academic and career-related skills and knowledge to make responsible decisions and to positively contribute to society.
The department serves as a “one-stop-shop” for all its students by providing them with these services:
- University and Career selection processes
- Applications for admissions and scholarships
- Accommodation advice
- Visa counseling
- External examinations (ACT/SAT/IELTS/TOEFL)
- Pre-departure briefing
- Exchange programmes
- University tours
- Guest speakers and lectures
ARIS’ University and Career Department use BridgeU, a world-class university & career guidance for global secondary schools. BridgeU provides credible college and career guidance software which partners with institutions to provide students with college planning and career assessment tools.
Bridge U platform allows access to worldwide college and scholarship research, career assessments and personality tests. BridgeU enables students to connect high school activities to career aspirations once they complete their education. BridgeU provides ongoing support to counsellors to track the progress of individual students and collaborate with students and families while creating reports on their entire student population.
A great many considerations, of course, must be taken into account in the construction of a DP/CP subject profile appropriate to the individual student and their Career-related subjects. The profile will accommodate as far as possible a recognition of the intelligence of the student, and his or her abilities, potential and aspirations. And the process of constructing a profile extends beyond the empirically verifiable evidence of academic ability to less readily quantified attributes of the person, such as commitment, attitude, altruism and sense of responsibility to others. Attributes, perhaps, that mirror the IB Learner Profile, and which engages with the DP/CP will continue to cultivate.
ARIS is proud of the many ways support is provided to new students, particularly those facing language difficulties, and/or whose academic background (for whatever reason) signifies deficiencies in syllabus coverage or competencies in essential areas of the curriculum, such as mathematics and the sciences. The IEPs are devised and implemented to ensure that students experiencing these difficulties are soon able to match the progress of their peers.
Admission is conditional upon parental agreement that students will participate fully in the curriculum and all related activities. The school curriculum does not include elements that would be disrespectful to any race or religion. Should it transpire that the school cannot offer education appropriate to a particular child’s needs, the parents may be requested to withdraw the child. In the highly unlikely event of a student and or parent causing serious disciplinary problems, parents may also be requested to withdraw their child.
‘Will this prospective student benefit from the educational programme available at ARIS?' That is the question which informs all decisions on admission.
This policy is communicated on the school website. At the beginning of each academic year, the Programme coordinators and Head of School communicates the possible access arrangements available to support students with learning needs during orientation programs for parents, students and staff.
As an institution, we believe in growth through reflection and continuous improvement, and we recognize our role as life-long learners. We are therefore committed to reviewing this policy on a yearly basis during the months of October - November, with the aim of ensuring that our policies are aligned with that of the International Baccalaureate.