The fact that nine students from Mumbai have emerged as world subject toppers in Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) series has put the spotlight on the small but growing club of schools providing the international curriculum.
A reason for the growing numbers is the fact that students opting for Cambridge curriculum have a better shot at pursuing higher education abroad.
According to the data provided by CIE, the number of schools offering Cambridge curriculum across the country has also risen from 340 to 350 in the span of a year.
There’s been a steady rise in number of students, as well. More than 70,000 entries, 10% more than last academic year, were received in the entire country for the International General Certificate of School Education (IGCSE) exam, which is the Class 10 equivalent, conducted in October/November 2014 and May/June 2015. Around 40,000 entries were for AS (Class 11 equivalent) and A level (Class 12 equivalent), a 12% rise compared to last year.
Students topped in subjects such as physics, mathematics and business studies. Prarthna Khemka from Utpal Shanghvi School, Juhu topped in mathematics (without coursework) in IGCSE exam. “Since I chose maths without coursework, I didn’t have to submit too many assignments and could focus on the syllabus,” said Khemka, who scored a 100 out of 100 percentile in the subject.
“The unique feature of this year’s results is that students took non-traditional subjects and excelled in them. India also had maximum toppers in maths and physics,” said Ruchira Ghosh, regional director, South Asia, CIE.
Students said that the application-based syllabus helped them in cracking the exams. “There was an alternative to practical work and syllabus focused on tackling real-world situations,” said Ria Pai from Podar International School, one of the toppers.