Under the patronage of the Chairman of Abdulrahman Kanoo International School, Mr. Saud Abdulaziz Kanoo, ARKIS held its unique graduation ceremony at an iconic landmark in Bahrain on Monday the 24th of August. Bahrain International Circuit (BIC) hosted, within their grounds, 153 of graduating students, 60 of which also graduate with an International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma. The remote graduation fell in line with the observance of health guidelines and precautions set about by the government of Bahrain in relation to the Covid-19 virus.
With a cohort adjusting to new conditions and digital platforms during their graduating year, the Class of 2020 at ARKIS excelled in many fields, both academic and extracurricular, it is important to note that out of the 12 IB Schools within the Kingdom, over the past five years approximately 20 % of the IB Diploma students have come from ARKIS itself. Including this accolade and on average, is that ARKIS students score higher within this Diploma in comparison to the world average (4.80) as sourced by the IBO. The graduating class comprised of 80 female and 73 male students and their journey to graduation was acknowledged by the graduates themselves: Fatema Ashoor, Husain Alekri and Sara Al Meshal.
نحنُ اليومَ نقفُ تبجيلاً لكم، علّنا نوفيكم بعضاً من حقِكم، فقد غرستم فينا بذورَ الأمل ِ، و أضأتم لنا طريقَ اليأسِ ، فشكراً لعطائِكم الفياضِ .
“Today we stand in a reverence for you, hopefully, we will fulfil some of your rights. You have instilled in us the seeds of hope, and you have lighted up our path, so thank you for your generous giving.”
Ms Moskwa, ARKIS Acting School Principal was at in attendance on stage to acknowledge the graduates, at the correct distance, with their respective parchments. The top eight IB students and their corresponding undergraduate courses included:
The graduating class of 2020 itself were part of many of the milestones for the academic year both locally and regionally. The students have participated in several programmes outside of the mainstream curriculum. Trade Quest Challenge is an example of such, a competitive financial simulation that is geared to provide students with realistic experiences simulating the local and international financial markets. The teams are made up of both school and university students who are given “virtual portfolios” and invest in companies listed at Bahrain Bourse and New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). They learn procedures and systems implemented in both markets during specified trading sessions through an electronic trading platform on BHB’s website. This real-world experience has seen on average eight private schools in Bahrain participate, in which ARKIS students have been frequently within the top four positions.
The InJaz, a Bahrain based not-for-profit organisation for which arranges an annual student schedule. They have a strong vision in terms of “respecting the talent, creativity, perspectives, and backgrounds of all individuals. A strong belief that there is power within of partnership and collaboration, and a conviction in the educational and motivational impact of relevant, hands-on learning”. ARKIS students, participating in the Company Programme, were nominated within the top three for the past four years, and won an award for “Best Social Impact in 2018” as 5arda. Other than academic prowess at ARKIS, the students also finished first place for the fourth year within the Schools Category for the Bahrain Marathon Relay. Additionally, ARKIS secured 1st place in most of the tournaments from September 2019-February 2020 via Bahrain Athletes Sports (BAS). Hisham Al Hammadi won second place at the Private Schools 2019 Regional Olympiad Mathematics & Physics competition hosted by the Arab Bureau of Education with Gulf States.
Speaking on the accolades the school and its staff & students have achieved this unique academic year, Mr Talal Fawzi Kanoo of the ARKIS Board noted, “The class of 2020 has endured some unique circumstances. They finished their last semester online amid a pandemic and closed the school year without many of the normal events and ceremonies previous graduating classes have had the privilege to have. We see now our graduating class receiving their parchments from an unlikely yet unique place, at the Bahrain International Circuit (BIC), from their cars. Yet, despite all this and in words of an international academic, “you didn’t let the uncertainty stop you from testing the possibilities”. I believe that it is during your time at ARKIS that this graduating class has learnt many real-life lessons, outside of the classroom. You are leaders and innovators, and you incorporate the vision of our Schools founder, the late Mr. Abdulrahman Jasim Kanoo, in which he devoted his efforts and wealth for this school with the dream that it would “provide the country with a generation that is conscientious, open-minded and educated”. It was his sincerest hope that you would grow into committed citizens of Bahrain that are contributing to and maintaining the interest of this country as well as to confront the challenges of the future. We are proud of you now and for your continued success as Alumni of ARKIS.”
Abdul Rahman bin Jasim Kanoo was born in the city of Manama in 1932. He was first enrolled in the Western Elementary School in Manama, then the Secondary School for Boys. He travelled to study in Cairo and was enrolled in the Mohamed Ali School in the Sayida Zainab area, then Khedeyweya Secondary School. After joining secondary school, he enrolled in the American University of Beirut- studying Business. Abdul Rahman Kanoo is one of the seven original founding members of the Yusuf bin Ahmed Kanoo Group (YBA Kanoo). He had a social spirit that is benevolent and a heart that expands the love of all people. He had a prominent role in supporting and developing the social and charitable orientation of this commercial group that gained a prominent position in its society. He was one of the Kingdoms commercial figures who worked to encourage the establishment of many charitable societies and committees in Bahrain. He was the Chairman of Al-Ahli Club for more than twenty years (1979-2000) and is one of the largest sports clubs in Bahrain.
He built and financed, at his own personal expense, the Abdul Rahman Kanoo International School in 1997 in Zinj. The school was then moved in 2005 to the Salmabad Area with a modern fully equipped campus- one of the first private schools in Bahrain. In 1999, His Highness Prince Sheikh Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa- Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Bahrain, appointed him as a member of the Supreme Council for Youth and Sports. In 1992 he was awarded the State Prize for National Action. He died in 2007 and his legacy continues in the formation of the Abdul Rahman Kanoo Group in which the school is one of many philanthropic activities.