‘Things didn’t go my way and I received a PSLE T-score of 203″ – Sabrina Chau of Sports School, scorer of 45 points for IB

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sabrina chau singapore sports school
Sabrina Chau (left) with Ms Oh Hui Min, her Chinese Language teacher. (Photo courtesy of Singapore Sports School)

Sabrina Chau Shu Ning, 18, of Singapore Sports School, scored a perfect 45 points for her International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme.

Sabrina is one of 14 Sports School student-athletes who sat for the IB examinations in November 2016. The results were announced earlier this year on January 5, 2017.

The result marks a remarkable transformation for Sabrina who entered Sports School with a Primary School Leaving Examinations (PSLE) T-score of 203, the lowest of her 14-strong IB cohort. Nine of the 14 Sports School student-athletes who sat for the examinations scored 42 points and above.

Sabrina is one of 57 students who had a perfect score island wide. Of 57, 48 were from Anglo-Chinese School (Independent), two were from Hwa Chong International School, and one from St. Joseph’s Institution.

“Singapore Sports School is delighted with the excellent results. Our student-athletes and teachers worked very hard to show that it is possible to combine regular sports training and academic studies. They have also proven that last year’s stellar performance was not a one-off,” said Principal of Sports School, Tan Teck Hock.

Red Sports caught up with Sabrina for an interview.

RED SPORTS: Please tell us about your journey to Singapore Sports School. How did you feel about attending the school in Secondary 1?
Sabrina: Golf was my CCA in primary school and since there was a golf academy in the Sports School, many people suggested that I try out for the Sports School. Because my brother was already attending the Sports School at that time, my parents encouraged me to try out.

When I was accepted into the school in Primary 6, I was invited to attend two orientation camps in P6 that were really fun. These camps made me pretty excited about attending the school in Secondary 1, even though my brother warned me that it wasn’t going to be all fun and games.

RED SPORTS: Tell us some of your memorable highlights of studying, training, and playing sport in Singapore Sports School.

Sabrina: I have many memorable highlights from my journey in the Sports School, but I think some of the major highlights came from the overseas trips that the school sent me on.

In my six years there, I went on trips to Thailand, Malaysia, Perth, London, Barcelona and China with my schoolmates. We got to experience all kinds of things, from attempting to surf in Perth to watching Les Miserables in West End.

The wonderful thing about these trips was that not only did we get to experience different cultures, but we also got to grow closer to our teammates and classmates.

Back in everyday school life, I have so many memorable highlights that I’m not sure which ones to mention. Training wise, I always loved the mini competitions we would play during training. In classes, what I really enjoyed were the conversations and discussions we had with one another.

But like every other teenager, the most memorable experiences came from what happened outside of these activities. Our crazy birthday bashes, our random jamming sessions and our impromptu basketball games are the memories that I will always hold close to my heart.

RED SPORTS: Tell us how you came to do the IB programme and what was it about the programme you found interesting and challenging.
Sabrina: One of my main reasons for wanting to enter the Singapore Sports School was the prospect of entering the IB Programme. I thought the programme sounded interesting and challenging, so I wanted to give it a try.

Things didn’t go my way and I received a PSLE T-score of 203, which didn’t allow me to qualify for the IB pathway and put me in the bottom of my Secondary 1 class. But I wasn’t going to give up, so I worked hard in Secondary 1 and 2 to get a place in the Pre-IB class in Secondary 3.

What I like about the IB Programme is its breadth. I liked how in IB we got to learn things like astrophysics and the theory of knowledge, which were new and refreshing. I also like the fact that we were tested in many different ways. We had to write many mini research papers and do frequent oral presentations, which I feel will really help me in the future.

The challenging part about the programme was trying to complete our Internal Assessments and Extended Essay (which are like mini research papers/reports based on syllabus material that we had to find on our own), while also trying to find the time to study for our exams. But I think regardless of these challenges, I had the best time in the IB Programme because of my amazing teachers and classmates.

RED SPORTS: What are you hoping to do next in your academic and sporting journey?
I hope to study international relations, in either an overseas or a local university. Sports wise, I will continue to play Golf socially but will not pursue it competitively.

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