'Opening Doors, Hearts, and Minds'
For the last five years, I have stood in the Carthage Acropolium watching our graduates walk up the aisle and take their rightful places on the podium. Each time, I see the pride in families, staff members, but most importantly in the students themselves, who have earned that place. I look around at my colleagues and friends, some like Liz Thornton and Dorsaf Kouki, two pillars of our community, who have seen many more graduates than I have; we smile and think: “Yes, we did it!” At the American Cooperative School of Tunis, this is what we do… we prepare students for a world of opportunities.
ACST is the only authorized IBDP School in Tunisia. I myself was an International Baccalaureate student. I was awarded the IB Diploma from the Collège Brébeuf in Montréal, Canada, in May of 1996. It has changed my life. The second language that I studied at the time, English, has definitely opened many doors for me, starting with the one at McGill University. The core of the IB Diploma program includes an understanding of knowledge and how we acquire it, the production of a 4000 words research paper, and the completion of CAS, creativity, action and service, components that we hold dear at the ACST Secondary School. All students take part in community projects during their time here.
Through MAP (Measure of Academic Progress) and ACTFL testing (externally assessed language proficiency tests), as well as the AERO and the Common Core standards, we closely monitor each student’s growth. We compare our results and our methods to those of some of the best schools in America, Africa, the Middle East and Europe. We are proud of the individual attention and care that we provide to our students and parents.
"Turning information into knowledge is a social process and for that, you need good relationships." Michael Fullan (2001)
In the ACST Secondary School, we all agree on our two priorities: providing quality and rigorous academic programs and fostering a strong sense of community. These goals are attained not only through the IBDP program but the High School years that preceded it, as well as the exciting, stimulating and thorough curriculum provided in our Middle School. At ACST, developing students as a whole is our goal. Our academic programs are therefore combined with high-quality community building structures such as the learning support and ESL programs, AMAC sports tournaments, a House system, the National Honor Society and Student Government, the Model United Nations, music, arts, drama, and world languages celebrations, a Green committee, and many others.
As the Secondary School principal, I am honored to build on such a legacy of excellence, and I know that our faculty feels the same way. Together, we get to know, teach and care for students from the beginning of Grade 6 all the way to the graduation podium. We are excited to welcome you into the 2016-17 ACST school year, a year full of promises and opportunities.