Navigating the Education Maze: a parent’s perspective

June 12, 2020

CAIS prides itself on becoming the go-to school for families across the globe, providing quality Christian education alongside the renowned Alberta Education curriculum to inspire students to reach their potential and make positive impacts on society.

So, what does that mean exactly? What makes CAIS an outstanding school and a vibrant learning community? Why are parents drawn to CAIS? What is Alberta curriculum?

These are basic questions parents ask when choosing the ‘right’ school for their child. To provide a parental perspective towards answering these questions, we spoke to Mr. Clarence Cheung, father of Edwin Cheung (G12 Senior Student), a telecom professional for a global enterprise. Mr Cheung has firsthand experience with different curriculum systems beginning with his own education. We asked him to share with us his experience.

Why did you enroll Edwin in CAIS?

Edwin loves reading, doing experiments and projects. Before joining CAIS, he was with a well-known local primary school that emphasized heavy academic workloads, tests and exams – which was contrary to what he enjoys.

Towards the end of his primary school study, we made a move and chose CAIS – a switch from local to international school – because of the school’s academic reputation coupled with a vibrant Christian faith that supports the learning experience of all students.

Having studied in a traditional school setting, it came as no surprise that Edwin took some time to fully adapt to the change. But with a team of caring and dedicated Christian teachers, as well as small class sizes, it didn’t take long for Edwin to show steady progress in his studies and make new friends.
The Alberta/Advanced Placement curriculum at CAIS was another good reason for us to consider CAIS.

The diversity of subjects embedded in the Alberta curriculum meant that Edwin was able to select and study subjects he was interested in –programming, biology and information technology, in both physical and virtual classroom settings!

In addition, the culturally diverse learning environment at CAIS was a plus, enabling students to experience and appreciative a global outlook.

What do you make of the Alberta curriculum? Why would you consider it to be its strength?

Initially I was swamped with information about different international education systems and so the best way for me to understand their distinction was to research and make comparison.

Alberta curriculum is a flexible curriculum – not a one-size-fits-all approach. While some parents and students were huge advocates of the International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma program, I took differed in my conclusion.

An international qualification – a gateway to universities around the world – is all we need, irrespective of the curriculum we choose.
Universities, local and international, have the built-in mechanism that enables them to evaluate and convert the grading schemes within different national systems. Students are admitted to universities when they meet their admissions requirements.

Unlike other international education systems, Alberta is flexible in ways that it allows students to focus on their strengths and study subjects that they have strong interests in. The curriculum is designed with students in mind and the makes provisions for inclusive education.

With that in mind, it made sense to choose Alberta curriculum offered at CAIS.

Share with us your experience at CAIS?

I am very pleased to have Edwin study in CAIS in the last six years and if I need to make the choice again, CAIS would still and always be our first choice.
CAIS Christian teaching staff are caring and passionate about education which is vital for children’s development.

I am grateful for all the support we’ve received from CAIS. The school provides ongoing support to help children keep up with their learning goals, overcome setbacks and boost their confidence in learning new skills.

Edwin will graduate this year, what’s next for him?

Edwin is applying to universities in Australia as our family is moving back to Sydney. He is planning to further his studies in environment or information technology. He would like to get the experience to live near school campus and prefer not to study in universities in the Central Business District.
Currently he has narrowed his choice to the Bachelor of Coastal and Marine Science degree offered by either the University of Newcastle or the University of Wollongong.