St Andrew’s College rejoices in its increasingly international character and is keen to acknowledge the invaluable contribution which its overseas students make to the academic and cultural life of the school. Our international student population represents more than fifty countries worldwide, including the United States, Spain, the UK, South Korea, Japan, Australia and Brazil - to name but a few. The international composition of the school community fosters a warm welcome and a supportive atmosphere for new students, making it easier for them to adapt to life in their new surroundings.
There are many organisational aspects of the College that reflect this internationalism. Academically, we offer students the opportunity to follow the prestigious International Baccalaureate programme in the senior school, a course which prepares them for admission to university anywhere in the world. We also host the SATs, which are essential for admission to Colleges in the US. American style transcripts are available for students hoping to attend College in the US and Canada. These need to be ordered three weeks in advance. To support the many international students whose first language is not English, we have a very active EAL (English as an Additional Language) department which helps to accelerate the social integration of some incoming students.
Since 1984, the College has been fully accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and the Council of International Schools. This achievement means that we have been recognised as providing a standard of education and a range of facilities which compare favourably with those offered by other international schools around the world. We were the first school in Ireland to be awarded this recognition.
Internationalism is at the heart of many of our cultural activities, such as the Model United Nations and Model European Parliament programmes. Both require participants to acquire a knowledge of global problems and to propose courses of action which reflect the concerns of particular countries. In the wake of contacts made through these programmes, we have decided to launch a student exchange scheme with a school in Croatia.
On a positively festive note, one of our most widely enjoyed events is the annual Intercultural Week/International Night during which a number of dramatic, musical and culinary presentations are staged with a view to introducing the distinctive culture of each country not just to the school community but also to the general public, whose support for the festival is greatly appreciated.
Finally, I must mention the wonderful Uganda Project which gives students the opportunity to visit a school, a hospital and an orphanage in Uganda to assess the needs of the people of the Kisiizi area and subsequently to organise fund-raising activities which result in substantial assistance being given to all three institutions.
We are very happy that St Andrew’s is an enthusiastically international school, and we hope that our students will learn to think of themselves as citizens of the world with a strong commitment to promoting the welfare of all its inhabitants.