Secondary School
Overview

Verita International School proudly offers the National Curriculum of England and Wales through the International Middle Years Curriculum (IMYC) for Year 7-9, the Edexcel International GCSE for Year 10-11, and finally, the prestigious International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme for year 12-13. We have chosen these curricula carefully as they have a focus on inquiry and experiential learning. Students are encouraged to explore the world around them and learn through hands-on activities. Classroom spaces and learning experiences are carefully structured by our teachers, coordinators, instructional coach, and administrators. Through this structure, it allows us to facilitate an interdisciplinary approach to learning that allows students to apply their knowledge, skills, and understanding rom a variety of academic areas.

In Secondary School, we are committed to developing students academically, physically, socially, and emotionally. We believe that to prepare students for high academic achievement levels, we must first ensure they feel safe emotionally, socially, and physically at school. We are aware that secondary students are going through a wide variety of changes and the most important thing is for them to feel understood by adults. In essence, that is our focus at the secondary level. We strive daily to build positive relationships with the students in order to enhance their learning experience in the classroom. In turn, we hope they will become globally-minded citizens of society with a strong sense of social justice to make a positive impact in the world.

From the Principal of Secondary

Ashley Peek

Dear Parents,
Welcome to the Secondary School at Verita International School.

The secondary school at VIS is built on the principle that in order for young people to excel, every aspect of their development needs to be carefully nurtured. This includes not just a student’s academic development, but their social development and their ability to manage and regulate their own emotions and behavior, as well. Our ultimate goal is to help guide our secondary students to becoming competent, compassionate, and effective members of society.

From the Principal of Secondary

Ashley Peek

Dear Parents,
Welcome to the Secondary School at Verita International School.

The secondary school at VIS is built on the principle that in order for young people to excel, every aspect of their development needs to be carefully nurtured. This includes not just a student’s academic development, but their social development and their ability to manage and regulate their own emotions and behavior, as well. Our ultimate goal is to help guide our secondary students to becoming competent, compassionate, and effective members of society.

International Middle Years Curriculum (IMYC)
Year 7-9 

The International Middle Years Curriculum is a framework which is founded on the National Curriculum of England and Wales. It transforms the curriculum into a more relevant and inquiry-based approach to learning for Year 7-9 students.

Students in the IMYC learn their subject content through a central conceptual theme paired with a theme descriptor, called the Big Idea; Courage (central theme)/ “being true to yourself requires bravery” (big idea). This topic and descriptor serves as the central focus for student learning in all subjects.

The purpose of this is to help students understand that everything can be connected to a central idea. It is to help them make connections and meaning of their learning across all subjects. In short, it allows them to see the independence and interdependence of subject learning.

Throughout each IMYC unit, students engage in a wide variety of formative and summative assessments. More importantly, they complete reflective journaling to illustrate their personal understanding and connection to the Big Idea. At the end of each IMYC unit, students conclude with a celebratory project called the Exit Point. The Exit Point is a meaningful opportunity for students to utilize what they learned in each subject to reflect their understanding of the Big Idea individually. These Exit Point projects vary from podcasts, videos, apps, service learning, or even short films. In essence, the mediums for students to depict their understanding is limitless. The Exit Points are designed to provide greater student agency to help students take ownership and make meaning of their own learning.

For more information about the IMYC, please visit their website. 

Here is our programme of inquiry for the IMYC in the Secondary School.

Year Unit 1 Unit 2 Unit 3 Unit 4
Y9 Unit: Identity

The Big Idea: Our sense of self, and that of others, is continually developing through our different interactions and impacts on how we exist in the world.

Unit: Challenge

The Big Idea: Facing up to or overcoming problems and barriers increases possibilities in our lives.

Unit:  Leadership

The Big Idea: ” For better or worse, one or more people can use influence so that others aid and support them.”

Unit: Entrepreneurship

The Big Idea: ”The ability to make money through development of products and situations appropriate to different markets requires application of certain skills.”

Y8 Unit: Relationship

The Big Idea: Every individual thing is affected by other things.

Unit: Curiosity

The Big Idea: ”The desire to know more drives exploration and aspiration.”

Unit: Respect

The Big Idea: ”It’s important to honor behavior and processes that have proven merit.”

Unit: Resilience

The Big Idea: ”Success over time requires persistence.”

Y7 Unit: Adaptability

The Big Idea: Adaptability is demonstrated by the ability to change, alter or cope with new environments or circumstances.

Unit: Risk

The Big Idea: ”Progress involves exposing ourselves to and considering the impact or forms of danger, harm, uncertainty or opportunity.”

Unit: Consequences

The Big idea: ”Very few actions are neutral. Most actions create impact or change that then have to be dealt with.”

Unit: Creativity

The Big idea: ”Innovative ideas can happen when existing or new concepts are brought together or expressed in a new way.”

Unit 1

Year 9

Unit: Identity
The Big Idea: Our sense of self, and that of others, is continually developing through our different interactions and impacts on how we exist in the world.

Year 8

Unit: Relationship
The Big Idea: Every individual thing is affected by other things.

Year 7

Unit: Adaptability
The Big Idea: Adaptability is demonstrated by the ability to change, alter or cope with new environments or circumstances.

Unit 2

Year 9

Unit: Challenge
The Big Idea: Facing up to or overcoming problems and barriers increases possibilities in our lives.

Year 8

Unit: Curiosity
The Big Idea: ”The desire to know more drives exploration and aspiration.”

Year 7

Unit: Risk
The Big Idea: ”Progress involves exposing ourselves to and considering the impact or forms of danger, harm, uncertainty or opportunity.”

Unit 3

Year 9

Unit:  Leadership
The Big Idea: ” For better or worse, one or more people can use influence so that others aid and support them.”

Year 8

Unit: Respect
The Big Idea: ”It’s important to honor behavior and processes that have proven merit.”

Year 7

Unit: Consequences
The Big idea: ”Very few actions are neutral. Most actions create impact or change that then have to be dealt with.”

Unit 4

Year 9

Unit: Entrepreneurship
The Big Idea: ”The ability to make money through development of products and situations appropriate to different markets requires application of certain skills.”

Year 8

Unit: Resilience
The Big Idea: ”Success over time requires persistence.”

Year 7

Unit: Creativity
The Big idea: ”Innovative ideas can happen when existing or new concepts are brought together or expressed in a new way.”

Approaches to
Learning

Approaches to Learning (ATLs) are transdisciplinary skills that are intended to develop students as lifelong learners and reinforce that we are teachers of learners, as well as teachers of subjects. ATLs enables students to develop a variety of skills that help them become better learners. It helps students question their own learning.

Secondary teachers plan their units and teaching activities with the ATLs in mind to ensure students learn how to become a better learner.

The five areas of ATLs are:

  1. Communication Skills
  2. Social Skills
  3. Self- Management Skills
  4. Research Skills
  5. Thinking Skills

Inquiry-Based
Learning

At the secondary level, there is a heavy emphasis on inquiry-based learning. Students showcase their understanding through various explorative projects and assignments. For instance, students may research on a topic and showcase their understanding through the creation of a magazine, podcasts, and etc. The emphasis is on independent learning and learning through mistakes. It is a shift from the conventional model of viewing students as empty vessels waiting to be filled with the teacher’s information. This allows students to take greater ownership and responsibility for their own learning.

After-School
Activities

During and after school we offer students a broad range of opportunities to express creativity, performance, athletics and inclusion. We believe in finding and developing every student’s unique talents. A strong sense of community with an emphasis on the arts, sports and a social curriculum reinforces our rigorous academic goals.

The School Day

The secondary school day is structured through 40 minute block periods. Students begin the day at 8:45 in their homeroom with their advisor. During this time, advisors go through important announcements and take attendance. More importantly, it is an opportunity for advisors to check in on how each student is feeling and inform other teachers if necessary. At 9:00, students start their first lesson of the day. Students have a subject-specific teacher for each of their course. Over the course of a week, students will generally spend more time with their core teachers and less with their specialist teachers.

Legend for subjects:

Core subjects

  • English (Eng)
  • Science (Sci)
  • Mathematics (Ma)
  • Humanities (Hum)
  • French, Romanian & ELL (Lang)

Specialist subjects:

  • Art
  • Design and Technology (D&T)
  • Music (Mus)
  • Physical Education (PE)
  • Information and Communications Technology (ICT)
  • Social and Emotional Learning (SEL)
timetable verita secondary