Matthew Flinders Anglican College on the Sunshine Coast will be the first school in Queensland to extend its students through the globally renowned Cambridge International Curriculum.
Principal Stuart Meade said Flinders was proud to be the first school in Queensland to be accredited to teach the Cambridge IGCSE Curriculum, which is offered in 18 leading schools across Australia.
Developed over 30 years ago, the Cambridge IGCSE is the world’s most popular international qualification for 14 to 16 year olds, with other Cambridge program levels available for students from ages 5 to 19 years.
The Cambridge international curriculum sets a global standard for education, and is recognised by employers worldwide and the world’s best universities, including Cambridge, MIT and Harvard.
Cambridge programs encourage students to master subjects in depth and develop higher-order thinking skills – problem solving, critical thinking, independent research, collaboration and presenting arguments – which are transferable skills for study and work in the future.
The first Flinders students to be enrolled in a Cambridge course include 16 Year 8 students and one Year 7 student who will together commence the Cambridge IGCSE Mathematics program.
It is envisaged that Flinders will introduce Cambridge courses in many subjects, including Science and Humanities subjects, in the near future.
“Matthew Flinders Anglican College has a well-established reputation as an institution with high academic standards,” Mr Meade said.
He said the school attracts some of the Sunshine Coast’s most talented mathematicians and has won several regional and state Maths competitions.
“Flinders has joined the Cambridge network of schools to get access to a more rigorous and internationally recognised qualification in the IGCSE,” Mr Meade added.
“Our plan is to extend our top Maths students by a full calendar year beyond what they might normally experience in the Australian Curriculum by the end of Year 9.”
The first class of IGCSE Maths students commenced in Semester 2 of 2019, and are finding the work challenging yet highly rewarding.
“They are inspired by the higher level of maths that they have been exposed to and it’s great to see them working collaboratively to solve problems,” said Mr Meade.
“Having Year 9 students ready for an internationally recognised exam that is usually taken by 16-year-olds is a big challenge, yet one we are all excited to tackle.”
Flinders’ Mathematics teacher Mr David Lanskey is the teacher of the Cambridge IGCSE Mathematics class at the College.
Mr Lanskey has experience teaching the same curriculum in the United Kingdom where he previously worked at a school where all students completed the IGCSE and most continued on to study Mathematics in their senior years.
“All the students in our Cambridge group here at Flinders appreciate the connections that Mathematics offers and are excited to learn so it’s a great environment to be involved with,” Mr Lanskey said.
“They are studying concepts that are typically advanced for their year level at a pace much faster than their normal Maths class, so being able to mentally challenge them and keep them interested at the same time is a real bonus,” he said.
“A few of them are noticing that more effort is required for them to achieve the lofty heights they expect of themselves, so there are nervous moments every now and then, but they’re up for the challenge.”
Matthew Flinders Anglican College is a co-educational school with a student population of 1325 students from Prep to Year 12.
Located on a 22-hectare rainforest-fringed property at Buderim on the Sunshine Coast, the College will celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2020.
Pictured above: Mathematics teacher David Lanskey with students Agnethe Kjaer and Craig King, who are undertaking the Cambridge International Curriculum.