Scholarships offered to gifted students
Park Lane offers new opportunities as well as new Malá Strana campus
Posted: March 20, 2013
By Clare Speak
For the Post
Following the establishment of its new secondary school campus in Malá Strana, Park Lane International School has now announced a new scholarship scheme for academically gifted students who will soon be joining Year 7.
"In keeping with the spirit of scholarship schemes everywhere, we are hoping to attract some gifted students who may not have considered enrolling at an international school for financial reasons or a lack of awareness," said the school's principal, Paul Ingarfield.
"We wish to encourage able and industrious learners to benefit from the high-quality education offered at Park Lane International School," Ingarfield said. "Since our first Year 7 class will also be the first class to graduate, in 2020, we would like our most senior contingent of students to set the highest possible standards for their younger colleagues to follow."
The new campus on Valdštejnská street, directly beneath Prague Castle, will be open from September 2013. There, new students will join current Year 6 pupils moving up from Park Lane's primary school in Prague 6.
"While the current levels of academic attainment of our Year 6 students are already very pleasing, the scholarship students who join us from elsewhere will clearly add variety to a very promising year group," Ingarfield said.
Each scholarship will be worth the total amount parents would ordinarily pay for basic school fees from Year 7 through to Year 13, which adds up to a total of 2,225,000 Kč.
It is as yet unknown how many students might apply for the scheme, but Ingarfield is hopeful. "We have not made any forecasts, but naturally we wish to receive as many credible applications as possible in order to have a strong group of contenders taking part in the selection process in mid-April," he said.
So what exactly are the criteria for an "academically gifted" student? Ingarfield explained there is no precise answer to this, as every child is unique; however, there are some sound indicators.
In 11-year-olds, the school will be looking for "highly inquisitive" individuals, with a "proven capacity to absorb and apply new learning at an impressive rate." They may have a particular aptitude for certain subjects but will "generally perform very well across the academic spectrum" and regularly reach or exceed the higher expectations for their age group.
The selection process will include logic and reasoning tests, plus an English proficiency test, as well as separate interviews conducted with the child and his or her parents.
Park Lane International School, which follows the British curriculum, has provided English-language education for nursery and primary school aged children since 2006. The new secondary school campus will have its official grand opening in mid-June, though it was first introduced March 5 to an overall response that Ingarfield called "extremely encouraging."
"Our existing students and parents have been waiting patiently to see the new premises, as we have been busy converting a former embassy building into a school campus for the past few months," Ingarfield said. "Considering the process is ongoing, our visitors seemed very impressed with the building in general and our chosen location."
Ingarfield says he and the school's administration were especially pleased to exhibit several classrooms equipped with new furniture and Smartboards, along with the school library and a state-of-the-art science lab.
It is expected that most of the interior, including the music studio, dining hall and reception areas, will be prepared in time for the school's next Open Day, which takes place May 14.
Clare Speak can be reached at email@example.com