Last week I wrote about why as a school we do what we do from a philosophical perspective, but this week I am going to shift lenses and touch upon some of the more quantifiable measures of the programme for those who prefer numbers over words to make sense of it all. We don’t frequently, or overtly, focus on these aspects of the programme because exam scores and university entrances can’t fully articulate what we are aiming to do as a school—and we don’t wish to become a school that is a “marks mill” alone—but academics are important and sometimes it take numbers and statistics to help reassure families (myself included) that we are getting those more traditionally-measured aspects of the programme right as well. Choosing a school that is not like the ones we grew up attending can be exciting as a parent, but it can also be a source of anxiousness about whether parents have made the right choice; hopefully this email can calm some of those worries if they exist for you! The added benefit in sharing some of these details is that this is also a chance to celebrate the accomplishments of the Grade 12’s thus far so that they know just how proud we are of them before they even write the DP exams in May.
As mentioned, although we don’t focus too often on the numbers, we absolutely value learning, progress and attainment; they are a big part of why we exist as a school. To that end, allow us to share a few bullet points on last year’s DP exam scores and this year’s university and college acceptances to date so that our community knows where the UWCT model can lead:
- In 2017-18, our average DP score was 35.8 points, nearly 6 points higher than the world average of 29.78
- Our average was the highest south of Bangkok and within a point of being the highest in all of Thailand
- Our pass rate was 86.5%, an increase over 2016-17
- Although we would like this number to be over 90%, we are non-selective entry into the DP programme so any student can enter the full Diploma Programme
- Nine students (25% of the class) achieved a score of 40 points or higher (out of a maximum of 45)
- This included one student with a perfect score of 45 points; less than 2% of all DP students achieve that score worldwide.
- With only 35% of our university and college decisions in up until today, acceptances across a wide range of our Grade 12 students—including former PIA students—already include:
|Princeton University||Stanford University||University of Toronto|
|University College London||University of British Columbia||Trinity College|
|University of Chicago||University of Edinburgh||Cornell University|
|Vassar College||Northeastern University||University of Hong Kong|
|University of Florida||Bowdoin College||NYU – Abu Dhabi|
|University of California – Davis||University of North Carolina||University of Pennsylvania (Wharton)|
|Wellesley College||Lake Forest||Earlham College|
|Lewis and Clark||University of Oklahoma||Furman University|
|City University of Hong Kong||Yale NUS (Singapore)||Oberlin College|
To our Grade 12’s, you have some tough decisions to make and challenging exams ahead, but know that we are already proud of wherever your plan takes you next year.
To our community, we hope that this information addresses some of the questions that might be out there about how the school performs in these more traditional metrics when we have a non-traditional approach. Together with the MAP data, we know that with our diverse community of learners we are onto something special with our combination of mindfulness, service, activities and outdoor education while still making sure our students are academically capable and equipped to follow their chosen path after university. We may not hang our hat on university acceptances as a way to solely measure our school’s impact, but I do think it is important for our community to know that whether a students wishes to go to the Ivy League, an Art College or the Peace Corps following Grade 12, that they can do any of that from our small, tropical island school in the south of Thailand. I happen to think that’s pretty incredible, so thank you for having faith in your family’s journey with us!
Proudly and purposefully, have a wonderful break.
Suk san wan Song Kran! / สุขสันต์วันสงกรานต์