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STGIS INSPIRING PEOPLE – VOLUME 10 / ANITA GERHARDTER

Wings for Life CEO Anita Gerhardter visits St. Gilgen.

St. Gilgen International School is organising a virtual Wings for Life World Run on the Wolfgangsee.

Anita Gerhardter, director of the Wings for Life foundation, was the most recent visitor to St. Gilgen as part of the St. Gilgen International School “Inspiring People” lecture series. She gave a presentation to the students on her work with spinal cord research.  

Wings for Life is a long-standing passion for Anita Gerhardter, who coordinates activities, initiates various projects and manages many partnerships. Always at the forefront of her mind is the organisation surrounding the next Wings for Life World Run.  

Miss Gerhardter, who is delighted by the overwhelming interest in this unusual running event, explained “On the 6th May at 13:00 (CET) the start gun will be fired to signify the synchronised start for thousands of runners worldwide, taking part in this year’s Wings for Life World Run. The number of participants is so large for some running events, in Vienna for example, that there are no longer any competitor start numbers available. As an alternative, there is the option to take part in the world run using a smartphone app.” St. Gilgen International School is one of 150 worldwide organisations hosting a so-called “App-Run.”   Anita Gerhardter was delighted to receive a donation in the sum of 1000 Euros from the students of the private school; revenue created from last year’s charity run.

Our Distance Learning Adventure

Our distance learning adventure began 3-weeks ago, we waved our students goodbye on a Friday afternoon, Wuhan-shaking each other at the gate. The whole community worked frantically in the days before our transition, getting our systems and curriculum in place, learning fast together; ready to truly embrace the fact that “learning takes place all the time, everywhere and for everybody; learning is complex and personal; learning is a journey”.

And what a journey it has been for StGIS students and staff already, highs and lows – challenges and celebrations. Our distance learning principles centred around a desire to ROCK; we asked our community to focus on Routines, get Outside where possible, to Communicate regularly and most importantly, be Kind to each other. We have discovered that curriculum delivery might change, but can continue, our staff and students have conducted Science experiments, filming and sharing the process, undertaken group work and performances in Drama, online discussions in English, and in-the-news research in World Studies; they love Kahoot quizzes, and enjoy the opportunity to keep fit through their Movement and Wellbeing daily exercise and keeping an active diary vlog of their efforts.

However, perhaps most importantly, we have also focused our energies on the many other, equally valuable yet less obvious aspects of school; our dedicated and caring Mentor Tutors have conducted face-to-face chats with their students on a daily basis, listening, guiding and supporting their learning and wellbeing. Our Head of Activities has motivated the community to try something new for 30-days; an instrument, language, cooking – whatever, provided it challenges and inspires. Our Digital Learning Coordinator has new ideas every week to connect with our students and staff across the globe, and he takes time to share his tips and tricks with the community. We continue to run assemblies, Science evenings, Spring concerts and more; in this way our commitment to excellence in care, education and activities remains as strong as ever.

What does this mean for our students? They get up each morning, but don’t have to wear uniform; their journey to school is a short walk to the computer rather than a long bus trip. They see their teachers and classmates on screen rather than face-to-face; but they still connect. Lessons start at normal times, students who can log-in, teachers introduce the topic and work with presentations, videos and live chat, students get the chance to ask questions. During the lesson, teachers respond to chat and video messages in Teams, review students work and give feedback as normal. After morning classes, our students check in with their Mentor Tutor, before taking a break. The rhythm continues; with up and down to lunch and some fresh air in between classes. After school, many will do some exercise, play music, draw, cook, meditate – anything to help keep positive and focused. Evenings maybe involve some homework, and some downtime with family; sleep comes quickly, and we do it all again. Is it easy; no, is it possible and are we ROCKing it – yes?

We are distant, yet still together and cannot wait to be back in St Gilgen as soon as possible; for now though, we remain committed to making the most of our distance learning adventure, and growing from the experience.

Class of 2019 Destinations - Update

Our graduates from the class of 2019 developed their passions with us and strengthened their strengths, and we are excited to see them continue this journey in a myriad of ways.

Class of 2019 Destinations Update

Following on from their stellar results in the IB Diploma Programme, we are pleased to announce that our students are continuing their lifelong pursuit of learning as they endeavour to contribute positively to our global society.  Our graduates from the class of 2019 developed their passions with us and strengthened their strengths, and we are excited to see them continue this journey in a myriad of ways.

18 Students of the class of 2019 start their University courses this coming month in countries such as the UK, Austria, USA, France, Spain, and Canada.  An additional 6 students have gone on to complete their civil service duties as required by their country, and 5 more graduates from 2019 have elected to take a gap year to gain experience in their chosen fields of interest.

University Destinations for our class of 2019 include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • UK: University College London (UCL), Westminster University, University of Sussex, London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London (UAL)
  • Austria: University of Vienna, University of Salzburg, Salzburg Mozarteum
  • US: Indiana University, Portland University
  • France: Le Cordon Bleu University, Paris
  • Spain: IE University
  • Canada: Ryerson University

We are very pleased with our graduates, and excited for their futures!

Class of 2018-2019 IBDP Results

The IBDP results are in, and we have much to celebrate for the class of 2019!

While the IB Diploma is a wholistic education focused on a journey of growth, it is punctuated with the completion of the programme through the demonstration of knowledge and skills acquired through means of assessment.  As many are already aware, these assessments take two forms: internal and external.  For each course, there is a different weighting of internal assessment to external assessment.  Our students completed their external assessments in May, and since that time the IB examiners have been evaluating and moderating each assessment component.  The IB officially released scores on the 6th of July. 

Our students have much to be proud of in their marks earned.  Of particular note are the following successes: 

  • An average IBDP score of 33 points from our passing students, which is the third best average score in our school’s history 
  • 87% Pass rate on the IBDP – notably higher than the world average from 2018 (the world average from the 2019 cohort will not be published for some time) 
  • 30% of our cohort scored 35 points or above, and one individual broke the 40-point barrier – a significant achievement 

The results from the IBDP will have implications on the future destinations of our students and each individuals’ plans will continue to firm up in the coming weeks and months.  At the moment roughly two thirds of the cohort will be heading to universities in countries throughout Europe and North America including: United Kingdom, United States, Austria, Spain, Netherlands, Italy, France and Canada.  The remaining one third of the cohort have plans to pursue new experiences through a ‘gap year’ or will be enlisting to a year of civil service as mandated by their home country. 

As a whole school community, we are proud of our graduates, and wish them continued success in the future.