good is better and your
better is best"
In 1994, Marie Claire Heerah founded St Nicholas Grammar School. The school is named after St Nicholas, one of the most popular saints of the Christian church. He has been the patron saint of children since the Middle Ages and many miracles were credited to him.
It can be observed that St Nicholas has always been linked to children in various ways and that a school should bear his name will seemed quite appropriate.
During storytelling hour for the young ones who join our school in level 1, St Nicholas' tales "Saving the children" is amongst one of their favorites.
The school was first based in a Colonial house in Quatre Bornes more precisely in Bernardin de St Pierre Avenue. St Nicholas Grammar School operated there for three years until sufficient funds were raised to build our own school. The building work ended in August 1997 and the children were pleased to start their third term in a brand new school.
The term "Grammar School" implies that the school is geared towards developing specific aptitudes, through the exposure to five languages that will allow the children to beneficiate fully from our rather intensive and broadened curriculum. Admission to St Nicholas Grammar School is conditional to an entrance examination, which is conducted on a one to one basis in the presence of the child's parents.
It is commonly said that the child is in his/her most receptive years between 0 to 7 years old. It is a period where he/she is able to assimilate quite an impressive amount of information. Since the child spends a substantive amount of his/her time at school, we at St Nicholas Grammar School want to expose the children to the most appropriate and varied "information" possible.
This is translated by the large number of subjects, which forms part of the curriculum and which is applicable as from preparatory level. This enables a harmonious development of the child, allowing him/her to be compatible with the different spheres of our modern society
We also prone subject teaching in that it prevents one teacher to be assigned to the same class, which becomes his/her territory after some time. With the subject teaching system, teachers are on the move during the day and are in constant interaction.
The quotation that we have adopted as our motto, "Never let it rest, until your good is better and your better is best" sums up our vision, our hopes and aspirations for the children entrusted in our care.
Our main objectives are to:
- Help pupils develop lively and inquiring minds, to acquire knowledge and develop skills.
- Help pupils to achieve self-discipline and develop strong self confidence
- Help pupils to develop creativity and expression in the arts and physical activity.
- Bring pupils to be aware and to respect their environment
- Lay emphasis on the importance of the emotional development of our pupils.
Focus would be on the child’s development so that when he/she leaves the school, he/she is primarily a well-balanced individual coupled with an all-rounder. St Nicholas Grammar School wants to be the school where even children who have been tagged as “slow learners” may find an attentive and devoted staff that will knowingly bring him/her to become this well-balanced individual.
One of the innovative specificities of the school is our Remedial Classes. Special assistance is provided to the children who need it, through remedial classes where the remedial teacher is on a one-to-one basis with the child. The remedial teacher uses the same techniques that the class teacher uses so as to avoid any confusion (confusion that often occur when children have private tuition) in the child's mind.
This special service ensures that the child joins the normal flow when he/she returns to class. One teacher is solely employed for this task.
St Nicholas Grammar School is one of the rare, if not the only, Primary school, which offers canteen facilities where children are seated at a table and are, taught how to eat properly with a fork and spoon. Table manners also form part of their school curriculum.
St Nicholas Grammar School holds assemblies every morning and children are invited to ask for prayers for their families and friends whom they feel might need them.
Since we have children coming from different countries, we celebrate different National Days. This helps them to feel more at home and that the school is interested in their country. Children need to write projects on a selected theme and the Guest of Honor rewards the best project. They also sing the national anthem while the flag is hoisted. This allows the children broaden their general knowledge and learn about the world through a different teaching method. At present, these countries will include France, England, Germany, Australia, Madagascar, China, and the United States.
The important religious festivals are also celebrated so that children are aware of the cultural differences of our society. The help of parents is greatly appreciated for these festivities. With their help, the staff prepares the celebration and a couple of parents are invited to explain the meaning of each step in the festivals' celebration. These celebrations will include Chinese New Year, Eid-Uld-Fitr, Easter and Divali.
St Nicholas Grammar School has a Pastoral Care program which consists in enrolling, each year, one child of a less fortunate family or of a lower academic capacity and offering him /her a special package for his primary and/or secondary education with us. Children are selected according to a number of criterions. The Pastoral Care program will include, for example, reduced/no school fees, free books or reduced canteen fees among others.