At SES, the aim of achieving a broad and varied curriculum, and of creating well-rounded confident and resilient young adults, means our provision involves many activities outside the classroom. It is often these additional opportunities which give our students the enhanced CV which makes them attractive as under-graduates and ultimately as potential employees. Such activities also help students grow as rounded individuals, by broadening their interests, increasing their fitness or skills, and giving them new areas for self-expression and experiencing success. For many it is the beginning of a life-long passion for music or a particular sport or hobby. Enrichment is a fundamental part of the experience that students have in SES.
Extra-Curricular Clubs (ECAs)
We offer a wide range of teacher-led extra-curricular activities and clubs to all students, both at lunch-times and after school, Sunday to Wednesday. Students are expected to attend at least one school club every term. Many students also participate in inter-school sporting competitions after school.
We aim to offer something for everyone, and encourage students to pick a range of ECAs both to develop existing skills and to develop new skills and unearth hitherto unknown talents and abilities. Our ECA offerings therefore cover a wide range of interests, including sports & fitness, mindfulness, the creative and performing arts, literature, programming, science and games.
At times the school links up with outside providers to increase the range of activities on offer. Karate, gymnastics, dance, cricket, tennis, climbing, diving, and many more, have all been offered by outside professionals, either on the school site or elsewhere. Such external provision is usually charged for additionally.
Camps, Expeditions, Community Service
In addition to regular clubs and activities, there are ample opportunities for students to become involved in community service and charity work, expeditions and camps.
Each year group can partake of an overnight camping trip, which is an invaluable way to build independence and self-reliance. Such trips introduce the children to challenging activities like rock-climbing, kayaking, mountain biking etc.
At Year 10 levels, these skills can be utilized and channeled into the International (Duke of Edinburgh) Award, where cooking and navigation skills are also added. The IA also includes a service and skill component. This programme has a pronounced effect on the students’ maturity and growing sense of responsibility.
Throughout each school year, secondary school offers overseas trips for curriculum and sporting purposes, and to fulfill the requirements of the International Gold Award. In recent years we have had a rugby trip to Sri Lanka, ski trips, IA expeditions to The Seychelles and Georgia, A Level Geography field-trip to Sri Lanka, a history trip to Russia, an art and design tour to Barcelona, and a trip for drama, art and design students to London. Our more skilled musicians travel to Bahrain each year for the Young Musicians of the Gulf competition.
Musical instrument tuition can be arranged through the school and is available for piano, violin, bass guitar, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, trumpet, trombone and drums. Singing tuition is also offered. Other tuition for other instruments may also be organised on request.
Those students who favour rock music also have opportunities to showcase their talents. The Annual ‘Battle of the Bands’ has been running for more than ten years; what distinguishes this venture is that it is largely student-led and organized. Senior students organise and direct rehearsals and provide tuition and guidance, and the final Inter-House ‘Battle of the Bands’ competition is normally held on the final day of Term 2. Judges are from local schools, or local bands; increasingly the judges also include SES graduates who have gone on to study music abroad.
SES is rightly proud of its tradition as a school whose musical and dramatic talents are out of all proportion to our small size. Opportunities for performance are provided to students on a regular basis, with concerts, graduation functions, music and arts evenings in school. Students get to showcase their drama work and present whole plays or musicals. Building on the foundations acquired in doing primary assemblies and shows, our students are enthusiastic and confident performers – their traditional strength in this area has grown tremendously in recent years with the introduction of drama as a popular examination subject at GCSE and A Levels.
SES students participate regularly in inter-school competitions, within the UAE and wider Gulf. Our students have won prizes recently at the Which School Advisor Young Musician of the Year 2017, and in the BSME Young Musician of the Gulf contest held annually in Bahrain.
Instrumental Music Grade Exams
SES is an examination centre for the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music serving the five northern emirates of the UAE. Exams take place every term and are very popular.