The mission of Cairo American College is to ‘Learn, Explore, and Have Fun’, and this is evident in each and every aspect of the school. CAC is a very special community with a strong reputation as one of the finest American International Schools in the world. It is rich with tradition, yet agile in its ability to adapt and change within our rapidly developing world. It is a center of exceptional education within a diverse and caring community that inspires students, cultivates the well-being of all involved and builds character in the global citizens of tomorrow.
Cairo American College was founded (under the name of ‘The Cairo School for American Children’) over 75 years ago in a three-story villa with just 50 students.
Who could have known then that this small beginning would grow into ‘The Cairo American College’, an exceptional educational community with an outstanding reputation? Since 1945, its unique character, academic standards and highly effective teaching have brought thousands of students through its doors and seen its amazing development into an 11-acre campus situated in the attractive residential area of Digla, Maadi.
Today, the campus offers a 520-seat state-of-the-art theater, three sports fields, 80 classrooms and 14 science labs. There are, in addition, extensive fitness and sports facilities, gardens and two well-equipped libraries. All of this is designed to bring the highest quality of learning and opportunity to the more than 800 students, over 100 teachers and a wide range of support staff that make up this diverse and caring non-profit community. This non-profit status means that the school is keeping all of its focus on providing the highest possible quality of education to the students, as all the school’s revenue is reinvested in resources, research and support for the wide range of activities that the school is providing.
At the heart of what the school is, there is a strong celebration of cultural diversity that meets the very individual needs of each of its members. There are both expatriate and local students from over 50 countries, representing more than 65 multinational corporations, 10 embassies, over 25 NGOS and many of Egypt’s leading companies. Cairo American College is unique among schools in the country in providing a world-class learning environment that prepares students for a successful future in today’s rapidly changing world.
Student learning is the focus of all of its activities, and each student is challenged to reach for new possibilities in achieving their aspirations. CAC has a strong reputation for its ability to meet the individual needs of all of the students, and in particular those with learning challenges, through personalized learning. Every student has the opportunity and support needed to succeed. Student Support Services provide differentiated and flexible support predominantly within the classroom environment and also sometimes in smaller group settings. The personalized learning approach that the school uses customizes learning for each student’s individual strengths, needs, skills and interests. When, despite broad-based in-class differentiation of learning, the regular curriculum expectations are either beyond the student’s level of ability or readiness, or when the student has already mastered or exceeded those standards, carefully considered accommodations are made to both support and also challenge learners of different levels. Inclusion is a very carefully and thoughtfully integrated continuum of services based on individual student needs.
At CAC there is an atmosphere that cultivates diversity, equity and inclusion. It proactively encompasses openness, awareness and empathy for the whole community and is a place where all of its members learn from one another and build the kind of character needed to thrive as global citizens. All of those who are part of this feel welcome and comfortable; it is a community which is consistently focused on improving and enhancing inclusion for the good of every member.
Cairo American College provides an exceptional academic education. It is a PreK -12 grade non-profit international school accredited by the Council of International Schools (CIS) and The Middle States Association for Schools and Colleges. It is authorized to teach both the PYP and IBDP programs and has been offering the IBDP since 1993, one of the most mature programs in Egypt. It is also the only US State Department sponsored school in Cairo. It offers an American-based curriculum and students are involved in traditional subject areas including Reading and Writing, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, World Languages, Arts, and Physical Education.
Student learning is inquiry based. This curriculum has been designed to provide outstanding educational opportunities that will help every student to reach their own very individual potential. Students are able to demonstrate their learning in many ways, through tests, written assignments, oral presentations, projects, demonstrations, and discussions, amongst others. Students in grades 3-9 participate in MAP (Measures of Academic Progress) testing. High school students also participate in the SAT and ACT assessments as part of their college application process.
An exceptional 98% of Cairo American College graduates enter university within one year of graduation from CAC with many achieving places in some of the top higher-education establishments of Europe, the United Kingdom and America, including Harvard, Princeton, Brown and UPenn in the last five years. The support learners are offered in developing their leadership abilities, their involvement in co-curricular activities and the service-learning skills promoted in CAC all improve the chances for students to reach these selective and prestigious world-ranking universities.
The faculty and staff of the school are its greatest strength and play the greatest role in inspiring students to learn, explore and enjoy their education. The teaching staff are experienced, highly-qualified educators in their respective fields, with a majority holding master’s degrees or higher levels of educational achievement. Alongside this, every teacher is engaged in continued professional development opportunities to ensure that they grow in their work. By providing a rich variety of high-quality professional development opportunities, both within the campus and beyond, the teaching community at CAC continues to develop its skills and offer the very highest level of education to the students.
The leadership of Dr. Jared Harris as Head of School brings over twenty years of high-level experience in working with students in a wide range of capacities and settings. During his career he has given presentations at a number of universities around the world and also been published in international school newspapers. He holds a BA in Psychology and an M.Ed. in School Counseling from Western Washington University, being mentored by several of the top Cross-Cultural Psychologists in the world. His current areas of research interest are cognitive science, learning theory, and instructional practices, and he has been the recipient of several prestigious awards during his career.
Key to the school’s success in preparing students to become active global citizens is the ability to provide the perfect balance of strong academics and enriching co-curricular activities that enhance the school’s core academic pursuits. This aspect makes the school truly stand out among other schools in Egypt. A strong emphasis on a whole-child philosophy gives as much value to co-curricular activities as it does to its strong academic standards. Learning extends beyond the classroom to a myriad of other exciting opportunities for children to develop their skills, behaviors and interests. These include sport, music, theater, government and a whole range of exciting chances for young people to grow and explore their talents and interests both in Cairo and the wider national environment.
Cairo American College also looks beyond the city and even the country to enrich the lives of the students through participation in a wide range of international associations, events, festivals and organizations. These include sport, theater, music and involvement in the Model United Nations Conference. Through these experiences, students enhance their interpersonal and organizational skills and further develop the life skills and learning attitudes that are fostered in the day-to-day life of the school. The after-school program of athletics offered at CAC is one of its strongest attributes. Students at all grade levels engage in events within the Cairo International School Sports Association, one of the Cairo international schools sports leagues. The high school teams also compete in the International School Athletic Association (ISAA), with travel opportunities to ISAA tournaments hosted in Europe and the Middle East in multiple sports, as well as some invitational tournaments.
As a community, CAC is rightly proud of its partnership with parents and with its responsiveness to changing circumstances. During the historic disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic, the school thoughtfully and strategically positioned itself to meet the changing needs of its community. It has been a global leader in safety protocols, consistency and the ability to remain open for face-to-face learning. During the pandemic the school’s leadership reviewed and responded to parents’ priorities and student learning in a way that amply reflected its continuous close relationship with the parental community and its prioritization of student well-being.
The school places a high value on parental involvement. It believes that their involvement in the day-to-day activities of their children is crucial for a solid and well-rounded education. It maintains a continuous and regular line of communication with parents and seeks to keep them updated on their child’s learning at every point. With close guidance, some parents provide additional assistance to teachers within the classroom and in after-school activities and the immensely valuable work of fundraising. The Cairo American College Booster Club deserves particular mention. It is a school-wide group of parent volunteers who work at fundraising for athletics and many other activities throughout the year.
CAC is notable for being the only school in Egypt to adopt the Harkness method, which actively encourages discussion in the classroom, with every student feeling encouraged to speak. In a Harkness class, learning takes place through discussions held around a circular ‘Harkness Table’. Sitting at the table, all members of the class can question, contribute, and contemplate in order to learn and succeed. This really empowers students and encourages their very active involvement in their learning – something that the school very actively targets. CAC is also unique in being the only school in the region to promote a program of financial literacy, where students learn the basics of budgeting, saving, investment, market strategy and fintech concepts. This provides a strong foundation for adult life and certainly helps to set youngsters on a path towards success from early on.
Certainly, a unique and quite exceptional school with a fantastic academic record, a caring and fully inclusive community and a vision for its future that prepares young people very effectively for the world they are entering.
For More Info: https://www.cacegypt.org/