On behalf of the staff at Advanced Learning Schools, we are happy to welcome you to the 2016/2017 school year. We hope that you had a relaxing and pleasant summer break.
We are looking forward to a productive partnership with you to ensure your children can achieve their highest potential. We recognize that in order to be successful in school, your children need support from both the home and school. We know a strong partnership with you will make a great difference in your child’s education. As partners, we share the responsibility for the children’s success and want you to know that we will do our very best to carry out our responsibilities.
We ask that you guide and support your child’s learning by ensuring that he/she:
- is familiar with the Behaviour Policy, new for this school year;
- attends school daily and arrives by 7:25am; 7:35am is considered late;
- is ready for the day’s learning experience;
- completes all homework assignments given by teachers;
- reads daily to develop a love for reading and to improve literacy skills;
- shares school experiences with you so that you are aware of his/her school life;
- informs you if he/she needs additional support in any area or subject;
- knows that you expect him/her to succeed in school and go on to college.
This handbook provides important information about our school’s philosophy, procedures, policies, curriculum and schedules. It is a guide to the way we operate as a school. Also included in the handbook are behavioral expectations and guidelines for students. Everyone should read the handbook carefully, especially the discipline section and use it as a reference throughout the year. Consistent and clear communication with parents is essential to student success at ALS. This handbook is only the start. Our monthly newsletter, Spotlight, informs parents of special events, sports schedules and events and happenings in classes. The newsletter is sent to parents and is also available on-line. Parents may also communicate with the school and individual staff through e-mail or on the telephone. We have an Open House on September 9 and the first parent conferences are on November 18 for grades 7–12 and December 16 for grades K-6. There are also a number of grade specific and programme specific events which are listed on the detailed monthly calendar which was sent home in June and is available on our website.
The ALS website is also a rich source of information throughout the year. You will find programme specific details as well as any important updates and announcements that might arise throughout the year. Please make sure you familiarize yourself with our site at www.alsschools.com
Know that staff at ALS will work very hard, every day, to create a positive and welcoming school climate for students. We want to make strong connections with students, offer them an engaging curriculum and help them develop and grow into responsible and respectful individuals able to make positive contributions to their society. Not a day goes by when we are not reflecting on how we can improve as a school.
We look forward to an exciting and productive year.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or concerns.
Gerry Steiert Kathy Khayatt
Boys’ Principal K-3 and Girls’ Principal
Curriculum and Assessment
Language is central to all learning. It is our expectation that, through a well-planned curriculum, our students will learn to read with understanding, write with clarity, and speak and listen effectively. Language is emphasized throughout the ALS curriculum as the basic and most essential tool for teaching, learning and assessment. We believe that a strong foundation in language prepares students to explore the various fields of knowledge represented by the traditional disciplines that form the basic curriculum. This core curriculum facilitates connections across disciplines, helping students to relate new learning to personal as well as academic experiences, and preparing them for continuing academic programmes at the local or international colleges and universities of their choice.
Through the curriculum, and through service, students are encouraged to apply the lessons of the classroom to the world around them, and to explore and develop the ethical and moral dimensions of their lives. Our goal is to ensure that all students, on leaving ALS, have developed the strong IB learner profile of being principled, caring and balanced individuals who are knowledgeable communicators, open-minded inquirers and reflective thinkers.
Assessment at ALS is always in the service of learning. We recognize the importance of accountability to parents, to students and to the community at large, and make every effort to report student progress and achievement in an accurate and timely manner. Academic standards are established within the core curriculum, with benchmarks to both plan instruction and monitor student achievement. The personal and social qualities of students are observed and assessed informally by teachers.
A Climate for Learning
ALS is a community of learners. Every student, teacher, administrator and staff member is encouraged to become a disciplined, creative and motivated learner. Class size is kept small, teaching strategies are differentiated and student-grouping arrangements are varied to promote optimal learning. Connections are made across the generations to strengthen the sense of community and enrich the lives of students.
Resources to Enrich
ALS is building a rich and varied collection of resources for teaching and learning, extending from building blocks to books and electronic media. Added to our curriculum resources, field trips to libraries, museums, zoos and parks within traveling distance of Riyadh provide a further strong dimension.