Cals College Nieuwegein offers education to pupils with at least a HAVO recommendation. There are currently 2200 pupils.
The school has a large and well-developed bilingual (Dutch and English) HAVO and V WO department. In the first three years of this optional programme, more than half of the subjects are taught in English. The aim is to help students to develop an excellent command of the English language and an international perspective. The three pillars of bilingual education are language proficiency, global citizenship and personal growth. A number of subjects are taught by native English speakers. Upper school pupils work toward an IB (International Baccalaureate) English certificate on top of their secondary school subjects.
The bilingual department also organises a number of excursions and drama workshops with an international perspective. Second-year pupils go on a study tour to England, and in the third year there are exchanges between Cals College and schools across Europe. In the upper school there are international work placements, which take our pupils all over the world.
The technasium programme concentrates on the skills required by pupils pursuing a technical direction, for instance on how to do research, on creative thinking, and on making a design. The goal of the programme is to help pupils channel their creativity toward sustainable solutions for real-life problems.
The first year of the HAVO/atheneum and the atheneum gives all pupils the opportunity to become familiar with the technasium programme, especially through the subject of ‘Research and Design’. In subsequent years they can choose R&D as a subject for their final exam.
Culture for all pupils
Cals Nieuwegein is accredited as a ‘cultuurprofielschool’ (culture school) because the arts are strongly represented throughout the school programme. Culture contributes importantly to the development of pupils and connects to our core values of ‘openness, safety, bonding and trust’. The culture programme is apparent in all school years, for instance through subjects like drama, music and visual arts, and in talent tracks such as audio-visual, atelier and dance. There is also a busy programme of school performances including two musicals, the final year (diploma) presentations and a range of workshops.
We have several international exchange programmes, for instance with schools in Estonia, China and Spain. The school also organises cultural excursions to various other countries. There are day trips to France, Belgium and Germany.
More than just lessons
In addition to the curriculum, pupils have a wide choice of activities including courses and electives. This way our pupils can develop into critical, well-balanced individuals with their own personal views of the world around them and their own lives.
HAVO and VWO pupils with an interest in and talent for scientific subjects can participate in special programmes offered by Utrecht University and the Utrecht University of Applied Sciences.
For pupils not enrolled in the bilingual programme but who do want to devote extra effort to learning English, the HAVO and V WO programmes offer the option of preparing for the Cambridge Advanced English certificates, which are recognised worldwide. This option is also offered for German and French, through the Goethe Institute and Delf Scolaire. Our teachers prepare the pupils for these certificates.
Starting from the first year we also offer lessons in Chinese and from the second year the subject of philosophy for pupils seeking an additional intellectual challenge. Chinese is also offered as a subject for the final examination.
Cals Business College (HAVO) and Jong Ondernemen (‘Young entrepreneurs’, VWO) cater to pupils with an interest in commerce. Pupils actually set up their own business by choosing a product, finding financiers and conducting procurement and sales.
The Media Academy is offered as an option to HAVO pupils with an interest in journalism, graphic design, vlogging and blogging.