JOHOR BARU: The new Shattuck-St. Mary’s (SSM) Forest City International School in Johor, with a 160-year legacy of American educational excellence, is expected to welcome its pioneering batch of students in August.
The RM1bil campus is located on the first of four man-made islands that make up Forest City, a 1.386ha smart city development at the southern tip of peninsular Malaysia adjacent to Singapore.
School head Graham Gamble said their American syllabus begins at pre-kindergarten level and culminates with a variety of Advanced Placement (AP) High School offerings in Grade 12.
“The strong point of American education is its focus on enquiry-based learning, where you find things out for yourself rather than listen to an authority of established knowledge.
“It empowers children to trust in their own abilities and ask questions to make sense of the world around them, and also be creative.
“This will unlock their potential and in this campus, we believe we have created a space for that to flourish,” Gamble said.
Students at middle and high-school levels will get to live in 130 well-appointed dormitories, each housing four to six children for a total capacity of about 800.
The school also accepts day students at all grade levels.
Gamble said students would also have 24/7 access to qualified medical support, well-balanced meals and all dormitories are fully furnished with attached bathrooms.
“Boarding is not simply a way of attending school if one cannot live close by but rather an immersive environment that is in many ways, more liberating for young teenagers than being at home.
“Like in Harry Potter books, young people who live in such an environment can develop extraordinary levels of responsibility and maturity and it gives them space to explore and try out new things.
“Research has shown that young people who attend boarding school are more successful when they attend university, and they are more attuned to the demands of living away from home and managing daily routines,” Gamble added.