Jamieson Programme - Cambridge International


Jamieson Programme, linked to Cambridge International IGSCE Course - Global Perspectives

Introduction: Grit, Gratitude and Good Humour...

Unique to Frensham, the Jamieson Programme, is built on the belief that teenagers are risk takers growing up in a complex and rapidly changing world in which, to thrive, they must develop empathy, self-control, integrity and grit – as core personal attributes. 

Participation in the Jamieson Programme develops a community of confident and engaged learners by inspiring growth of skill, confidence and courage to deal with unfamiliar territory. Based on the precept of experiential education, the programme offers real world challenge through engagement in new physical, intellectual and emotional experiences in a secure, stimulating environment that is inherently exciting and immensely rewarding.

Cambridge International’s IGSCE course, Global Perspectives (added to the Jamieson Programme in 2012) is considered a ‘perfect fit’ for Frensham’s Jamieson Programme, in terms of preparing students to be global citizens of the 21st century. Developing global competence is a core focus of the Jamieson Programme, which focuses on goals that are closely aligned with four of the Cambridge Learner Attributes.

Importantly, the academic benchmarks achieved by Year 9, have been enhanced by the rigorous study of key global issues and the collaboration and critical-thinking focus inherent in Global Perspectives.

Responsibility in action, or ‘character in action,’ is a fundamental principle that guides students in a diverse range of activities and leadership experiences. Frensham girls are encouraged to embrace challenges and undertake service activities with ‘grit, gratitude and good humour,’ qualities that awaken a belief in themselves that will stay with them throughout their lives.

Frensham – a forward thinking boarding school

Frensham, an outward-looking forward thinking girls’ boarding school, is located in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales, Australia. Frensham is unique in Australia with more than seventy percent of the total school enrolment in residence. It is also the only Australian school for girls programmed for a full day, seven days per week, with each age group’s needs and interests catered for differently. The Frensham motto, ‘In love, serve one another,’ encourages students to be active and compassionate in recognising the needs of others and to respond with generosity, demonstrating leadership by example and integrity. 

From its origin in 1986 as a camp for Year 7, funded by a bequest from a past student, the Jamieson Programme has become an integral component of the School’s curriculum. The Programme continues to develop, as each element is progressively tested and reviewed, and each activity refined. Jamieson concepts are now applied to planning for Closed Weekends (when all boarders and day students remain at school for a programme of planned activities); Jamieson Week (the final week of the school year); and the core curriculum for Years 7 to 10. 

Frensham’s Jamieson Programme

The Jamieson programme has four goals, which provide a focus for students aged 12-16 in Years 7 to 10:
  • Global Citizenship: to develop an understanding of your responsibilities as a global citizen; to develop an intelligent perspective about other cultures.
  • Health/Fitness and Physical Challenge: to develop and sustain a healthy lifestyle; to understand and develop your physical capabilities.
  • Critical, Ethical and Flexible Thinking: to develop a love of learning; to become a skilled and critical user of technology; to become a disciplined learner; to develop creativity coupled with a strong work ethic; to develop a deep understanding of Mathematics, Literature, Science, History and the Arts. 
  • Responsibility, Service, Leadership: to be the best you can be; to understand and act on your environmental responsibilities; to develop an awareness of, and to act on, your responsibilities to help those less fortunate. 
Those goals are met through a range of regular programmed activities tailored to the needs of each year group. Activities include:
  • Community Service (including dining room duties, farm management, environmental management, nursing home visits, tutoring and coaching).
  • Outdoor Education (camping, caving and expeditions in a dedicated Outdoor Education Week).
  • Leadership (School Forum, Peer Support programmes, boarding house leadership).
  • Specialised courses (Presentation Skills, Drama, Personal Development and Harm Minimisation, Careers testing, Financial Literacy).
  • Jamieson Weekends (a series of Closed Weekends when all students remain at school to participate in planned activities).
  • Jamieson Week (the final week of the school year with a whole school focus on activities dedicated to the goals of the Jamieson Programme).
The Jamieson Programme - Year 9 experience

The Jamieson Programme for Year 9 targets specifically their personal needs at what is a crucial time in adolescent development. In addition to ongoing involvement with their Year 12 mentors and acceptance of increased responsibility with Junior Houses, each fortnight Year 9 students engage in a mandatory extended-day curriculum from 1:30pm-8:30 pm. During this time they undertake the Cambridge International IGSCE Global Perspectives course, exploring key global issues from a personal, local, national and global perspective. Other elements of the extended day include Community Service, Environmental Projects, Personal Fitness, Health and Well-being workshops and challenges, Religious Studies, and Study Skills. 

Integral also is participation in a three-day residential Global Forum, where Year 9 students have the opportunity to engage with global thinking in a range of collaborative workshops with guest speakers from local, business, sporting, social justice and artistic communities. The Global Forum is directly linked to the Cambridge International IGSCE Global Perspectives course and the three-day immersion in ideas adds significantly to the outcomes achieved by all students. A cornerstone of the Global Forum experience is working, learning and playing alongside students and teachers from an Intensive English Learning Centre (a school for students who have recently arrived in Australia).

Year 9 also engage in a mandatory programme associated with the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme. This includes an outdoor education camp, a caving expedition, overnight expeditions and service activities. Students can also undertake additional service activities that contribute to the Duke of Edinburgh Award, such as visiting nursing homes, environmental management and the Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital Project. At the end of the school year, Year 9 join with the rest of the school in Jamieson Week, a whole-school focus on Jamieson Programme activities. 

Student Reflections:
‘We are emerging as global thinkers who do not just picture our own lives but consider the perspectives of others.’ (Year 8)
‘You don’t have to do something extraordinary in your life to make a change in the world; little steps can have a big impact.’ (Year 9)

Link to Cambridge International School