1. Who attends your school? (Religious background, community)
The school welcomes students from all communities, and religious and social backgrounds. Entry requirements to Morning Star School are independent of any such criteria.
2. What training and qualifications do the teaching staffs possess?
Each classroom affords a Supervisor (academic teacher) as well as a Monitor (administrative assistant teacher). Our Supervisors possess formal and recognised qualifications such as Teacher-Training Certificates or university degrees.
It is also a prerequisite for all staff to be trained as “Learning Facilitators”, as the ACE programme is a “Student Centred Learning Programme”.
All staff members have been trained by ACE trainers from abroad and are therefore qualified to work in an ACE school.
3. Are you a recognised education institution by the Ministry of Education?
Yes, our school is recognised and licenced by the Ministry of Education and the Private Secondary Schools Authority (PSSA) to run a primary and a secondary section. We are also licenced to run a pre-primary section.
4. What advantages does an education from Morning Star School provide over public schooling?
All educational systems, whether public or private, have both advantages and disadvantages.
The ACE curriculum, offered at Morning Star, is an alternative educational programme. Students are trained to take ownership of their learning and this results in producing autonomous learners for life.
Some of the advantages of our system are:
• Our classes have no more than18 students with 2 members of staff serving each class. This offers a staff to student ratio of 1:9 and ensures individualised attention for each student.
• Because students learn at their own pace, they are free to move ahead in their work without being held back by other students who may require more time to master certain concepts.
• Continuous assessment also enables students to quickly and regularly repair learning gaps that may start forming in a student’s academic foundation. This allows scholars to successfully master smaller, bite-sized portions of work throughout the year. In this way, children are not faced with the embarrassment and humiliation of failing an entire year’s work and then having to repeat the whole year again.
5. Until what grade does the school cater for?
At Morning Star, students are able to progress towards and achieve the ICCE General Certificate which is equivalent to CIE “O” Level. From there, students may move on to achieve the ICCE Intermediate and Advanced Certificates, the latter being equivalent to the CIE “A” Level.
6. Are you a Christian institution?
Morning Star is a Primary and Secondary school, promoting Christian values and ethics.
We believe in upholding these values in a world that has somehow lost sight of them, a world that places much emphasis on academia, often neglecting character traits such as honesty, respect and integrity whilst endeavouring to sculpture its future generations. Morning Star is a biblically based Christian school which endeavours to produce responsible, virtuous citizens, possessing high moral values and social standards.
7. Do you have affiliations with international institutions? If so which ones?
Morning Star is part of a network of hundreds of ACE Schools worldwide. Our school falls under the regional authority of the ACE Headquarters in Durban, South Africa. Our secondary school certificates are obtained through the “International Certificate of Christian Education” (ICCE) in Swindon, UK.
8. What does your curriculum consist of?
The primary programme consists of the following academic subjects: Mathematics, English, Literature, Word Building, French, Science, Animal Science, Social Studies, and IT. Music, Art and Sports are also a part of the daily programme at Morning Star.
The secondary programme also includes Mathematics, English, Literature, Etymology, French, Science, Social Studies, IT, Music, Art and Sports.
A variety of electives are also covered, becoming more specialised at the higher levels. These include, Accounting, General Business, Business Mathematics, College Mathematics I and II, Trigonometry, Chemistry, Biology and Physics, Speech Health, Advanced Art and Humanities to name a few.
9. What is ACE education and what is PACE?
“Accelerated Christian Education” (ACE), also referred to as “The School of Tomorrow”, is an individualised learning based curriculum. It offers a holistic approach to education where the child is always held at the centre rather than the programme. Students are trained to become autonomous, independent learners from a very young age and the setting of short and long term goals forms a daily part of the school practice.
Each child during his or her school career progresses through a range of work books known as PACEs (i.e A Pack of Accelerated Christian Education).
ACE has taken the conventionally styled textbook and divided it into bite sized, achievable, work texts called PACEs. Each PACE is similar to a unit in a text book. Each level consists of 12 PACEs in each subject. PACEs integrate Godly character-building lessons into the academic content, and self-instructional activities are carefully designed to develop thinking skills and create mastery learning.
Students begin their PACE work by noting their goals, the concepts they will learn, a Bible verse, and a corresponding character trait. From the beginning of each PACE, they know what is expected and assume the responsibility for their own learning!
Throughout the curriculum the introduction of new vocabulary words is computer controlled so that no new vocabulary word is used without the student first learning its meaning and pronunciation. Also, these words are repeated a certain number of times to ensure mastery.
Each PACE contains several Checkups, which are quizzes covering a section of the PACE. If mastery in an area is not achieved, the checkup will reveal that weak area. Students can then take the time necessary to review and learn those concepts before proceeding to the next.
Upon completion of the activities and checkups, students prepare to take the Self Test. Here students evaluate themselves, and a Supervisor/Tutor determines readiness for the final PACE test the next school morning. The PACE Test objectively measures student mastery of the material.
10. What would a typical PACE test consist of?
A PACE Test is the summative assessment of each PACE covered by the student. This test is administered under rigorous supervision and specific protocol is adhered to by both the student and the Supervisor. In order for a student to pass this test, a minimum score of 80% is required ensuring mastery learning and so indicating that the student is ready to progress onto the next PACE. If this score is not achieved, the student is required to repeat the PACE. All scored tests for certification are dispatched for moderation in the UK by the ICCE.
11. What is ROTE learning and do you practice it at the Morning Star?
I understand ROTE memorisation or learning to be the act of fixing information to your memory through sheer repetition. This method is often used for memorising time-tables, periodic tables and when young children first learn their ABC’s it can be also be considered to be ROTE learning. I remember it being referred to as learning “Parrot Fashion”. Unfortunately this method does not emphasize the importance of deep understanding or true comprehension but rather the mere recalling of facts.
We do not practice this method of learning at Morning Star, nor is it used in the ACE programme. Mastery, maximised comprehension and application of all subject matter and concepts are required before a child is able to move onto the next level of learning.
12. How far is theology included in the subjects taught at your school?
We do not teach theology, although Christian values permeate all aspects of school life.
13. What qualifications do graduates from the Morning Star hold?
Graduates may hold any one of the three ICCE certificates.
ICCE General Certificate, ICCE Intermediate Certificate, ICCE Advanced Certificate .
14. Are these qualifications equivalent to an HSC or a Baccalaureate for example?
In 2008, a comparative analysis of the Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) and the International Certificate of Christian Education (ICCE) qualifications was carried out by UK NARIC. The benchmarking table below
ICCE General Certificate comparable to Cambridge “O” Level
ICCE Intermediate Certificate comparable to Lower 6th.
ICCE Advanced Certificate comparable to Cambridge “A” Level
A similar analysis was carried out by ENIC-NARIC, France, confirming comparability of the ICCE qualifications and the French Baccalaureate.
15. What tertiary schools can they attend to perpetuate the same learning methodologies?
An ACE scholar is one that has been trained to be an autonomous, independent learner, able to effectively plan, set and complete daily goals. With this acquired ability, ACE students can easily adapt to most methodologies and are generally confident when entering tertiary institutions.
Morning Star has seen its school-leavers, successfully enter various tertiary institutions, both in Mauritius and abroad.
Several of our students have gone on to study Law through the University of London; others have been enrolled at Charles Telfair Institute, Moka, to study (ACCA) Accounting or Business and Financial Management; and yet others to the University of Mauritius for Forensic Science.
One of our students is presently studying in Paris at the Institute of Podiatry. She was required to write an entrance exam to secure one of the 60 available seats. Out of the 360 applicants who all sat the entrance exam, our Morning Star School student successfully secured her seat by coming 36th.
16. Can my child enroll in Morning star if they have already completed their primary education in another conventional school?
Many students over the age of 12 have successfully joined Morning Star and adapted perfectly to the ACE learning methodology. However it must be noted that it will not be easy for a child over the age of 13/14 to just fit into the system. ICCE requires that all students complete the ICCE General Certificate before they start the Intermediate or Advanced Level. Generally students will start their ICCE General level at the age of 12 or 13 and complete it at the age of 14/15. Therefore if a 14 year old would like to join Morning Star they would be required to go back and complete the General Certificate. An average ACE student will take about 5 years to complete the 3 ICCE levels.
17. Is there a Membership fee to join Morning Star?
There is a family membership of Rs 25000 to join the school, and a registration fee of Rs 20000 per child thereafter. For instance if a family with 2 children would like to join the school they would need to pay the following: