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Lessons from a high school year like no other

Lessons from a high school year like no other

As a school, the lessons we have learned in 2020 have no doubt made us a more extraordinary, resilient community for years to come. But our biggest lesson has been this: No matter how much the world changes, we will continue to provide students with a life-defining education no matter what.

The coronavirus pandemic forced many of us to put plans on hold. It challenged some of our priorities, but also reinforced the urgency of others. Education – especially a high school education – is one of those urgent priorities that cannot wait, and this year we learned just how committed we are to guaranteeing it.

Adapting to uncertainty

From face-to-face teaching to distance learning and back again – adaptability and resilience have been major themes in 2020. In a matter of days last spring, our faculty transitioned from teaching in classrooms to teaching via distance learning across 12 time zones as we helped students return home safely. In spite of the challenges, our Grade 12 students graduated with some of the highest marks and best university acceptances our school has had to date.

The summer break was spent planning and preparing for campus reopenings in August. With a new intake process involving mandatory testing and quarantining, extensively revised health protocols and social distancing measures, we successfully welcomed students back on campus to provide them with a stimulating space in which to live, learn and flourish. When asked about what it was like to be back and reunited with friends, most students agreed that campus looks a little different nowadays but is very much the same welcoming, inspiring place it’s always been.

Optimism for the future

Equipped with the lessons learned this year, we are determined to keep students on track with their education next year and are providing families with more support than ever before to ensure studying abroad in 2021 is still possible.

Our Safe Learning Promise is our commitment to ensuring students continue their education no matter what. In a time of uncertainty, we are supporting families with a series of promises they can rely on: the highest standards of health safety at our school, face-to-face teaching and online learning for those who need it, a support network on campus and in families’ home countries and flexible fees to provide additional reassurance.

In addition to this support, we have developed a series of exclusive preparation activities for new students and their families to make everyone feels confident and ready to embark on their international journey with EF Academy. Interactive workshops, virtual tours and detailed seminars on topics such as university preparation and co-curricular activities will help every new student hit the ground running next September.

They say education is a lifelong process, but the high school chapter is one that can neither be skipped, delayed nor repeated. At EF Academy, we are more committed than ever before to making it a truly transformational one.