Learning Mandalika International School Principal Julie Moreno Shares

The school serves all groups of the year, from early childhood to high school. As a small school, students experience a unique and personalized learning environment that is highly connected to the local community.

Read on to find out more and if you want to get in touch with the school, you can do so here.

Hello Julie, thank you for taking the time to tell us about Mandalika Intercultural School (MIS). Can you tell our readers a bit about yourself and what brought you and your family to Lombok?

Yes of course, I am originally from Brisbane, Australia and have worked in international schools for over 20 years. My area of ​​expertise is secondary education in biology and geography, although I have taught many subjects at many school levels. I also have an Environmental Masters in Education for Sustainability and am passionate about service learning and global citizenship.

After traveling the world extensively and teaching in schools in four other countries, my husband, two children and I fell in love with Indonesia and its people. After 10 years in Java, we finally followed our dreams and moved to Lombok to settle into our forever home. We like to live near such beautiful beaches, to be part of a small dynamic community centered on tourism and to be part of a pole in full development.which is exciting and stimulating at the same time.

Can you briefly introduce us to the school? When was it formed? What year groups does it serve and what study program follows?

MIS was opened as Rinjani Indah School in 2017 by Rod and Jacqueline Chin, who had a vision of an international school that was integrated and interacted with the local community. Although our courses are in English, we have a strong bahasa indonesia curriculum, teach national curriculum requirements to Indonesian students and develop our English as an Additional Language curriculum.

We strive to include children of all cultures, backgrounds and abilities, and welcome students from the age of three into our Early Years programme. Our oldest pupils will join the Cambridge A Levels program (for 16-18 year olds) in August 2022. Our Early Years program is game-based and follows the Australian curriculum framework. Primary and middle school outcomes are drawn from the Australian curriculum with an international focus on HASS (humanities and social studies) and science. Secondary students have a choice of subjects from Australian and international Cambridge courses. We currently have over 50 students enrolled.

What do you like most about Mandalika Intercultural School?
Julie Moreno

There are a lot of things that I love about school!

Because we are a small school, we can truly meet the needs of each student, support them in the areas they need, and encourage them to pursue and develop their talents and passions. We have excellent, caring and creative teachers. Our student to teacher ratio (currently 1:5) means teachers can support every student in their learning. We are very connected to our local community and our students are involved in many activities: sports, creativity and community service, both in the classroom and outside of school.

Our purpose-built new campus has been designed to blend in seamlessly with our beautiful surroundings in the rice paddies and at the foot of the surrounding hills, while providing comfortable and stimulating learning spaces. We have many collaborative spaces where students and teachers can break into working groups, as well as a large science lab, library, playgrounds and gardens. I love working in this space.

My teenage children attend school and I am very happy that in addition to being a principal, I am also a parent. I love for my teenagers to interact with children of all ages and from all types of backgrounds. Although their first language is English, they are both proficient in Bahasa Indonesian and Spanish. I love that they are active outdoors and have been involved in several community projects.

My daughter has four levels of scuba diving certificates, Model United Nations (MUN) awards, hosted Lombok’s first interschool MUN event (MUNBOK), can surf and skateboard, and regularly helps with well-being. be strays with Kuta Lombok Dogs. My son runs an afterschool club for Dungeons and Dragons, has a prize for bahasa indonesia speaking, has participated in several MUN competitions and enjoys being on the Security Council, and learning Muay Thai and circus techniques. I love that he can also pursue his passion for history and that he takes courses above his level in this subject.

I really love that all of our kids have so many opportunities to follow their passions and learn new skills. They have learned to interact with people from all walks of life and they are true citizens of the world.

What are some of the unique things children appreciate about school?

We have very creative students! They enjoy building and building, cooking, and exploring multiple solutions and perspectives. What other school would make Shakespeare on a mountain between Tanjung Aan Bay and the drama of the ocean? When you need to exercise, you pack your bags and go on a nature hike, the starting point of which is less than five minutes away. Our school activities range from hip-hop classes to robotics to highly academic science fairs. We are as diverse as our community!

About life in the area in general – children can feel safe cycling to school, walking the streets with their friends and hanging out at the beach on weekends.

What are some of the biggest differences students find between school and their previous education?

Small classes, low teacher-student ratio, individual education plans, wellness programs, authentic learning, and inquiry-based learning addressing real-world problems and solutions. MIS teachers believe that learning should be fun and engaging for all of our students.

Our students often learn in mixed age groups. At MIS, we believe it is important for our students to be able to communicate and collaborate with people of all ages.

Extra-curricular activities: Surfing, skateboarding, yoga, martial arts, scuba diving, camping and hiking.

Our students help local community organizations such as Kuta Lombok Dogs, Mandalika Dog Shelter, Batu Bambu Kids Foundation, Lombok Aid, Lombok Plastic Free, etc.

What are some of the common questions you receive from potential new parents/students interested in enrolling in the school?

If students attend our school, can they return to school in their home country? YES! Our curriculum is internationally recognized and our assessment and reporting results are clear and transferable.

And if they don’t speak English? Immersion is the best way for children to learn a language. EAL students join regular classes, with support, and we find that their English develops very, very quickly.

Do we offer national curriculum and exams for Indonesian students? Yes, our Indonesian students must follow the national curriculum from the 4th year. We offer bahasa indonesia and civics, organize religious classes and prepare students for their national examinations.

When does our school year start and end? Our academic school year starts in July/August and ends in June. Students are welcome to join at any time of the year. As we have students from both the northern and southern hemispheres, our main holidays are split between December/January and June/July.

We heard that MIS recently opened a brand new campus. Can you tell us more about this?

Our brand new school will open for the second term of our 2022/2023 school year, so mid-October 2022. We are all very happy that our beautiful campus is complete.

The campus is designed to integrate sustainably with the environment, to be bright and airy with areas for collaborative learning, and to make the most of the extensive green spaces and covered buildings. It will include a center dedicated to early childhood; a large covered multi-court area; Scientific/artistic space; library; outdoor learning areas; sports field; and an organic farm.

Mandalika Intercultural School is truly unique in this part of the world, with our innovative teaching and learning programs, truly caring staff and beautiful grounds and surroundings. Every child feels welcome and part of our big GIS family.