With Cambodia’s schools set to reopen gradually, Clive Swale, the principal of Invictus International School Phnom Penh, talks to The Post about the Singapore-based institution’s efforts to bring its accessible quality education safely to the Kingdom.
Can you tell The Post more about Invictus?
Invictus strives to provide a high quality international education at accessible prices in central Phnom Penh.
Originally starting out in Singapore, Invictus has quickly established itself as one of Singapore’s leading international schools, with an excellent result achieved in the recent International School Assessment (ISA) by our Year 3 and Year 6 students.
Invictus now has six campuses across Asia, and also operates the “Invictus Family”, a virtual international school accessible across the whole of Asia.
What sets Invictus apart from the other international schools in Cambodia?
Invictus is very unique in its offering through a comprehensive international curriculum in a central location and at affordable fees.
We offer all-through education from Year 1 to Year 13 combined with the widely recognised Singapore Mathematics teaching method as well as bilingual English/Mandarin and English/French options.
All this at very reasonable rates. For example – unlike other international schools – we do not charge any annual capital fees.
In addition, we offer our students “seamless transfer” to our Singapore and Hong Kong campuses, subject to vacancy availability and local government visa approval.
This enables our students to continue their education and learning without disruption were their parents to be relocated to these countries.
Can you tell us about Invictus Phnom Penh’s plans to open in August?
The school is scheduled to open for the new 2020-21 academic year in August. Renovations are progressing well, and while we experienced some delay due to the Covid-19 outbreak, we will be ready to open on time.
There are currently some uncertainties around when international schools can open in Cambodia, and we are currently applying for a permit to open at the start of the new academic year.
In the event that we are unable to open in August due to government guidelines, the school is fully equipped to conduct home-based learning as a temporary measure.
What’s Invictus’ approach when it comes to online learning?
Our approach is to mimic the way we learn at our physical campus. This is also the approach with Invictus Family, our homeschool offering.
More than any other virtual platform, we provide “synchronous” – live – learning for the vast majority of the schedule. Many platforms depend heavily on “asynchronous” – on demand – learning which removes much of the live interaction that we feel is so important.
We have invested in the learning platforms and tools that enable us to provide an excellent learning environment and optimal experience for both students and teachers. The hours of the classes and the content would be the same.
Can you tell us about the Invictus Early Bird discount? How much are your fees for both Primary and Secondary levels?
For a limited time, we are offering the first 100 primary school students who sign up for our Phnom Penh campus an “Early Bird” discounted fee of $5,000 per year.
We are also offering the first 50 secondary school students an Early Bird discounted fee of $5,500 per year.
These special fees are applicable for the academic year 2020-21 and 2021-22.
Our standard school fees – post Early Bird – are $8,000 per year.
What do you offer at Primary and Secondary levels?
For primary, we are offering the International Primary Curriculum – IPC. The IPC takes a global approach, consisting of specific learning goals for every subject, for personal learning and for international mindedness.
It is based on the UK national curriculum, which we combine with Singapore Mathematics.
Another unique aspect that we have introduced is the opportunity for students to select Chinese Mandarin or French as a second language, and Khmer as a third option for students.
In secondary school, we will be using the Cambridge International curriculum. In Year 9, the students will take the Cambridge checkpoint before moving onto Cambridge IGCSEs and finally Cambridge A levels.
How did your successful sister schools in Singapore and Hong Kong adapt in the unprecedented Covid-19 crisis?
Our schools in Singapore and Hong Kong were ordered to physically close during the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic. We quickly adapted to the situation by reverting to virtual learning to ensure continued learning for our students.
In addition we are strictly following local government guidelines to ensure a safe and smooth reopening of schools.
How are you reaching out to students and parents at this time?
We are engaging with parents and students through our social media accounts and strategic partnerships and giveaways with businesses in Phnom Penh.
In what ways are you optimistic for the short, medium and long term future?
Invictus means “unconquerable”, and the disruption from the Covid-19 outbreak has only strengthened our mission to provide quality and accessible education in Phnom Penh.
Our approach to learning nurtures individuals in innovative and inspiring ways to be lifelong learners who contribute positively for a better tomorrow.
Advocating this approach motivates us to evolve and adapt in these challenging times, with the help and dedication of our teachers and the use of modern technology.
We believe that discerning parents are primarily on the outlook for good quality international education and want access at reasonable fees, even if that’s at the expense of fancy facilities, which typically demand a high premium.
Education is a long-term investment. Our unwavering commitment to providing quality international education will ensure our long-term success in Cambodia.
For more information, please visit our website https://www.invictus.com.kh/ or call +855 (0) 92222868