St Peter’s Girls’ Senior School curriculum continues the tradition of excellence in education. Within this framework, students are guided and supported to develop the attributes of a St Peter’s Girls’ graduate and engage fully with the rich academic, co-curricular and community life within the School.
On this page:
Head of the Senior School is Mrs Kerry Skinner
In September 2012 St Peter’s Girls gained full Authorization to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme.
The curriculum at St Peter’s Girls is delivered by passionate and skilled teachers. As students move to greater independence and responsibility for their learning, they foster with their teachers a relationship built on trust, respect and collaboration. Outstanding achievement has been the hallmark of the St Peter’s Girls’ School graduate, and many realise their aspirations to become proactive and compassionate citizens. We celebrate the success of these confident, optimistic, empathetic and environmentally aware young women who contribute to our global community.
Our academic results consistently sit well above the State average. Since the introduction of the Tertiary Entrance Rank (TER) in 1997, more than 50% of our Year 12 students have recorded a TER in the top 10% of the State. St Peter’s Girls’ School is very proud of the consistently outstanding South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE) results achieved.
The strength and quality of education at St Peter’s Girls is not limited to the public successes of our students. All students at St Peter’s Girls are valued and are encouraged to participate and do their best. While the pursuit of excellence is important, the School encourages students to believe in themselves and embrace the many different learning opportunities available. Read more here…
The curriculum caters for students with a range of abilities and interests. Excellent teaching and modern facilities help each student realise her individual potential and successfully respond to the rigour and challenge of study at St Peter’s Girls’ School. As the students enter the Senior School in Year 10, they study a core group of subjects and are also provided with opportunities to explore their individual strengths and interests by undertaking optional subjects in order to make informed choices for their final years.
The two curriculum options in Year 11 and 12, South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE) and the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma, support and equip students with the skills and dispositions to be successful St Peter’s Girls’ School graduates and provide a firm foundation for future learning and career pathways. The courses are different and the best course is the one that suits the learning style, academic, educational or future pathways of the individual.
The Year 10 curriculum is designed to allow choice within some of the key learning areas, and prepare the girls for South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE) Stages 1 and 2, and other pathways. The Stage 1 subject, the PLP (Personal Learning Plan) is offered at Year 10. Students undertake the compulsory subjects of English, Mathematics, Science, Humanities and Physical Education. Elective subjects include Art, Dance, Design Technology, Drama, Food Management, French, Japanese and Music and Textiles. Design Technology and Dance are offered as Stage 1 subjects at Year 10.
Years 11 & 12
From 2013, St Peter’s Girls will offer two pathways in Years 11 and 12 to prepare students for tertiary education and life beyond school. Students can nominate to undertake the the South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE) or the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma.
SACE & IB Comparative Chart & FAQs
In September 2012 St Peter’s Girls became an Authorized IB World School to teach the Diploma Programme from the beginning of 2013 with the first cohort to graduate at the end of 2014.
IB World Schools share a common philosophy – a commitment to high-quality, challenging, international education – that we believe is important for our students.
What is the IB Diploma Programme?
The IB Diploma is an academically challenging pre-university matriculation course which provides “in-depth academic rigour with breadth, ensuring each student finishes school competent in their own language, numeracy and a foreign language, and knowledgeable in science, humanities and the arts. In addition, students will have followed a course in critical thinking (Theory of Knowledge) completed a research essay and developed their own CAS program of creativity, action and service.” (IBO, 2011)
Students who receive a Diploma are eligible to apply to universities in Australia and overseas as the Diploma is internationally recognised and highly regarded.
What are the advantages of studying the IB Diploma at St Peter’s Girls?
- Encourages international-mindedness
- Develops a positive attitude to learning that prepares students for university education
- Has a reputation for rigorous external assessment with published global standards, making this a qualification welcomed by universities worldwide
- Emphasises the development of the whole student – physically, intellectually, emotionally and ethically
- All subjects have the same value (no scaling)
- Suits students who enjoy learning and who are able to achieve a pass level in the IB that is equivalent to an ATAR of 80+.
Who are ideal IB Diploma candidates?
Students who fit the IB Learner Profile and who are:
- independent, active, curious learners
- like to be challenged, personally and academically
- have good management and organisation skills
- are interested in becoming well-rounded individuals and good global citizens.
What can be studied?
Students studying the IB Diploma at St Peter’s Girls complete six academic subjects chosen from six subject areas (refer to DP Curriculum Hexagon) and the core requirements. Students study three of the six subjects at a ‘High’ level and the other three at a ‘Standard’ level.
Group 1: Language A1 – English, Chinese
Group 2: Second Languages – English, French, Japanese, Spanish Ab Initio
Group 3: Individuals and Societies – History, Geography
Group 4: Experimental Sciences – Biology, Chemistry, Physics
Group 5: Mathematics – Standard and Higher Level
Group 6: The Arts – Music, Theatre, Visual Arts or second subject chosen from Group 2, 3 or 4
IB Diploma Programme Model
The study of at least two languages is compulsory. Students who join the Programme in Year 11 who have not studied French or Japanese previously can complete the language requirement by studying an off-line Ab Initio subject (i.e. Spanish)
In addition to studying 6 subjects, students participate in the three course requirements that make up the core of the Diploma Hexagon.
Theory of Knowledge (TOK)
Creativity, Action and Service (CAS)
Extended Essay requires students to engage in independent research through an in-depth study of a question relating to one of the subjects they are studying.
Theory of Knowledge is an introduction to philosophy course, linking the subjects. Students reflect on and critically examine different ways of knowing (perception, emotion, language and reason) and different kinds of knowledge. (scientific, artistic, mathematical and historical).
Creativity, Action and Service is a community service, physical activity and creativity programme.
How are students assessed?
The IB Diploma is a two-year programme. Unlike SACE there is no division between work undertaken in Years 11 and 12. This means that students are examined on the full two year’s work at the end of Year 12. Most of the assessment is done through exams and marked externally. However, in nearly all subjects, some of the assessment is carried out by subject teachers, who mark individual pieces of coursework such as oral or practical assessment activities.
The Diploma normally takes two years to complete. At St Peter’s Girls, students will sit for the exams in the November session and be resulted in January. Our first IB Diploma candidates will commence Year 11 in 2013 and sit their Diploma examinations in November 2014.
IB Diploma points
The Diploma is awarded to students who gain at least 24 points, subject to certain minimum levels of performance across the whole programme. This includes satisfactory participation in the Creativity, Action, and Service requirement. The highest total that a Diploma Programme student can be awarded is 45 points.
Choosing between the SACE and the IB Diploma
The implementation of the International Baccalaureate Diploma from 2013 is a new and exciting curriculum innovation at St Peter’s Girls’ School.
To ensure that students and parents are well informed about both courses the School has developed a SACE and IB Diploma Comparative Chart outlining the points of similarity and difference between the courses, and a set of FAQs. If you have additional questions after reading the content on this site, the following staff members can be contacted:
Senior School Policies
Senior School Curriculum Handbook
Parents can access further policies on the Parents Place page.
The Senior School program centres on developing skills for life beyond school. As the Senior students evolve into independent learners, students are instructed in effective study skills aimed to improve motivation and examination preparations.
Information and Communications Technology is a vital part of Senior School studies. Students each have their own laptop and engage with digital technologies for a variety of learning outcomes. Personal access to these technologies provides immediacy of information and is student-centred and engaging.
A range of topics is studied within each subject and each year group. An overview is provided each year. Alongside the academic curriculum, students are encouraged to participate in sport, music and other co-curricular activities.