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Secondary School

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Vale Verde International School offers a wide and balanced curriculum based on the British Curriculum for Key Stage 3, leading to the internationally recognised Pearson and Cambridge qualification of IGCSE (International General Certificate of Secondary Education) and the ICE (International Certificate of Education), administered by the Cambridge Assessment International Exams.

The Secondary School ranges from Year 7 to Year 11 (ages 11 to 16). Intake is limited to eighteen students per class. This provides ample opportunity for students to receive individual attention, which has proved very successful and is evident in the high pass rate of students at VVIS.

Pupils from Years 7 to 9 follow a common curriculum of English, Maths, General Science, which includes elements of Biology, Physics and Chemistry, French, Portuguese, Geography, History, Information and Communication Technology, Music, Drama, Art and Design, PSHE and Physical Education. From Year 10 Double Award Science – Biology, Physics and Chemistry combined – are introduced as well as optional subjects such as Business Studies, Global Perspectives, English Literature and Travel & Tourism being offered.

Considering the current changes to the education system in England, the International Cambridge Certificate has become the model and sought-after qualification worldwide.  In Years 10 and 11 an option system is put into operation allowing pupils to “play to their strengths” while ensuring that they continue with priority subjects. Students study a selection of subjects throughout these two years and normally take a total of seven or eight subjects at examination level at the end of their studies to achieve the Pearson and/or Cambridge International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) which receives worldwide recognition in over 140 countries.

Pupils following the IGCSE courses will take the following key subjects to examination level: (Optional subjects are offered subject to demand – minimum 3 students per subject)


  • English First Language

  • Mathematics

  • Computer Science

  • Double Award Science, combining all 3 Sciences - Biology, Chemistry and Physics

  • Portuguese First or Foreign Language (if student has been studying Portuguese before)

Plus options:

  • Business Studies

  • Global Perspectives

  • Art and Design

  • English Literature

  • Travel & Tourism

  • French Language

Physical Education is a compulsory and timetabled non-examination subject for all pupils. Music is also on the timetable up to Year 9.   Many students who were unaware of their amazing talent, have discovered a love of singing or playing an instrument thanks to the availability of additional evening and weekend lessons. Vale Verde International School is an examination centre for ABRSM practical and theory examinations with an average intake of 25 students.

Increasingly throughout the school ICT/Computer Science is assuming the role of a means to learn and exercise other subjects as well as being an independent discipline in its own right.

The British curriculum with international adaptions throughout the Secondary years leads up to the Pearson / Cambridge Assessment International Examinations Advanced Subsidiary and Advanced Levels (AS & AL) examinations (Age 18) suitable for university entry.

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