Transition to Independence

Transition to Independence

On May 30th 1985, the then First Deputy Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong challenged school principals to accept a mandate to go independent, “… to dare to try out new ideas” and to empower Singaporeans to face the challenges of the 21st century.  ACS was among the first schools in Singapore to take on the mandate and on 2nd January 1988, ACS became ACS (Independent).  Becoming an independent institution allowed ACS to exercise greater flexibility and autonomy to innovate and experiment with curriculum and staffing, while maintaining the traditions and cultures unique to the school.  Under the guidance of the Board of Management (BOM), a new administration team was formed and Associate Professor Lawrence Chia was appointed the first Principal of ACS (Independent).

On January 9th 1992, ACS (Independent) made its move to a new campus at Dover Road with facilities and a boarding school. This campus was officially declared open on Founder’s Day by Dr Richard Hu, then Minister of Finance of Singapore, on 1 March 1993. The following year, in 1994, ACS (Barker Road) was established as a full government-aided school catering to both Primary and Secondary students.

In January 2004, the Integrated Programme (IP) was introduced – a 4-year course offered to ACSians beginning from Secondary 3 right through to pre-university level where they would sit for the IB Diploma examinations. ACS (Independent) officially became an accredited International Baccalaureate (IB) World School in April 2005 after being assessed in the preparation and readiness for the programme, and is the first national school in Singapore to offer the IB Diploma. It officially became a 6th Form School in 2006, with female students bringing a new dimension to the ACS (Independent) campus life. The first cohort of IB diploma students graduated with excellent results in 2007. Each cohort since then has maintained the high standards set by their seniors and continue to perform exceedingly well.