In the realm of education, where academic excellence is pursued, Colombo School of Arts and Sciences (CSAS) stands out as a centre of holistic learning and outstanding achievements. Under the guidance of Principal Shaleeka Jayalath, CSAS has not only demonstrated an unwavering commitment to nurturing individual growth but has also pioneered innovative approaches that yield exceptional results.
CSAS’s philosophy revolves around creating an environment where students are not only recipients of knowledge but also active participants in their own educational journeys. The success of this philosophy was recently demonstrated by the outstanding results achieved by CSAS students in the June 2023 Cambridge Assessment International Education (CAIE) examinations.
These achievements reflect CSAS’s ethos of “no student left behind”, which ensures that even students who may not be able to move as fast as others are given the necessary support to achieve their academic goals.
Each and every CSAS student who sat for the exams, passed, attesting to the success of the inclusive and empowering learning environment. Accordingly, from IGCSE to GCE AS-Level and GCE A-Level, most students excelled, while all were able to successfully complete the examination. In the IGCSE category, students attained an impressive range of grades from A* to C, with a notable 78% securing the highest A* and A grades. The Grade 11 GCE AS-Level results were equally commendable, with 100% of students scoring between A* and B, and 34% of students achieving the topmost grades. At Grade 12 level, all GCE A-Level candidates passed, with an impressive 77% achieving grades from A* to C.
Principal Shaleeka Jayalath explained, “Our commitment to providing a conducive learning environment and fostering individual growth has culminated in these outstanding results. We believe that every student has the potential for excellence and, irrespective of ability, every student must be empowered to excel.”
One of CSAS’s transformative initiatives that has drawn wide attention is its “Boot Camp”. The term itself, coined by students, might invoke military associations, but this initiative is anything but that. Instead, Boot Camp serves as an optional coaching camp, providing a bridge between mock exams and the main exams. The results have been consistently remarkable with candidates achieving an average performance increase of 10%, with instances of improvements reaching an astonishing 50%.
Participating in the Boot Camp is not solely about boosting academic scores, though. It also signifies a commitment to self-improvement and an aspiration towards excellence. Notably, Boot Camp attendees consistently display higher A and A* grades, underscoring the initiative’s impact on academic outcomes.
CSAS’s holistic philosophy also extends beyond academics. While grades hold their significance, the institution places equal importance on nurturing an empowered mindset. Independent learning, critical thinking, and a robust work ethic are all integral components of this philosophy. The Boot Camp, in line with this mindset, seeks to instil success-oriented behaviours and a clear focus, ensuring students are prepared not just for exams but for all life’s many challenges.
Principal Jayalath explained, “Our approach nurtures self-driven learners who are not just chasing grades but embracing knowledge for life. Boot Camp embodies this philosophy by reinforcing key concepts and cultivating success-oriented mindsets, that transcend academia. We also do not allow or advocate tuition, and believe in independent learning. We train our students to think for themselves and develop a robust work ethic to help them succeed.”
A remarkable aspect of Boot Camp is its emphasis on team building. Rather than promoting individual excellence, the initiative fosters collaboration and camaraderie. The IGCSE results bore witness to this approach as Boot Camp attendees achieved identical grades, a nod to the power of unity and mutual support.
Colombo School of Arts and Sciences continues to inspire and lead, not only in terms of academic achievements but also in nurturing well-rounded individuals. Through its holistic philosophy and innovative initiatives like Boot Camp, CSAS propels its students towards a future brimming with possibilities.
Summing it all up perfectly, Principal Jayalath remarked, “CSAS is not just about academics; it’s about fostering an environment where students thrive, collaborate, and excel, shaping them into responsible and innovative citizens of tomorrow!”