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The academic program in the high school (HS) at RIS is dedicated to preparing students for success at the university level and beyond. The focus is on our mission to graduate “successful, balanced, and compassionate individuals.” Courses and lessons are structured to make sure students are engaged, challenged, and guided to become independent learners. The RIS high school counseling office works closely with students to prepare them for admission to higher education facilities. RIS students and alumni have had a consistently impressive record of matriculating to the world’s top colleges and universities.
RIS’ college-preparatory curriculum allows students to identify and develop their individual interests throughout their high school years. With a 1:1 laptop program and diverse learning platforms, students are empowered to develop and hone the skills they need as the world moves towards the future—namely critical thinking, collaboration, digital literacy, innovation, and technological fluency.
Based on an American curriculum, high school courses are adapted and enriched to serve our international student population. Students in grades 9 and 10 build a strong foundation in the fundamental subjects: English, mathematics, science, and social studies, with additional courses providing balance and creating a diverse learning experience for each student. These include physical education, the arts, values, additional modern languages, and a range of enticing electives. In grades 11 and 12, students continue to build their knowledge base by choosing from a broad selection of advanced courses—currently 47 IB classes and 17 AP classes—as well as an array of general courses and electives. As one of only a handful of schools in Southeast Asia to offer students both Advanced Placement (AP) classes and the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma program, RIS students continue to achieve top IB and AP results, not only in Thailand but far exceeding world averages.
In combination with its focus on academics, the high school at RIS continues to emphasize character education and a commitment to global citizenship and responsibility. Beyond the classroom, the majority of students choose to participate in competitive athletic programs, performing and visual arts, academic competitions in various subject areas, and diverse clubs, many of which focus on community service. Ultimately, the high school experience at RIS centers on developing the attributes and achievements that each student needs to meet his or her goals and aspirations.
To qualify for an RIS diploma, students must earn a total of 36 credits, complete their final year of high school at RIS, and fulfill the following minimum requirements:
RIS students from grades 8 to 11 are provided with the High School Program of Studies, a detailed guide that includes all of the information needed to plan their four-year high school career. Students are encouraged to share its information with parents and to spend time consulting with teachers and counselors whenever possible about specific classes. The guide helps students make informed choices about their desired courses and academic pathway as well as prep for university entrance.
The RIS high school counseling office advocates that each student learn as much about himself or herself as possible before researching colleges. Students are also encouraged to consult the school’s AP Coordinator and IB Coordinator for information on Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate Program courses, respectively. For general college and career planning, students are assisted by their High School Counselor. RIS’ Thai College Counselor is also available for advice specific to Thai universities.
The individual personalities, skills, and ambitions of students help set them apart from their peers and are central to their college applications. To reach their goals and potential, students are encouraged to find the college that “fits best” and to use all of the assets made available by their individual counselor and the resources of the counseling office in general. Each year, more than 200 colleges and universities from around the world visit the RIS campus to recruit our students. RIS students have been recognized for their individuality and academic excellence, often cited by colleges as “hard-working, intelligent, and a pleasure to get to know.”
HS students begin most days with their homeroom advisor and classmates. This provides opportunities for supported growth for all students, as well as ensures ongoing connections. Students then move on to their daily classes—five periods including a morning break—then a break for lunch before the final block of the day. The high school schedule includes a flexible learning block to give students the chance to get extra help from their teachers, take on additional learning opportunities, meet with club or activity advisors, and complete other work with classmates and teachers. Many students remain on campus after classes end at 2:40 to participate in athletics, study at the library, or take part in other school activities.