All Aboard Education: The School Sailing Around The World
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All Aboard Education: The School Sailing Around The World

Anoop Bhuller shares the opportunity to experience a one-of-a-kind education

Slowly opening your eyes, gently swinging from side to side, you wake up in a snug hammock. But this one isn’t on the beach, it’s hanging from the ceiling of a Norwegian ship right out to sea. Your classmates are sleeping around you and a view of the ocean is visible through the far windows. An exciting day of exploration and learning in a new country awaits.

The A+ World Academy is a one-of-a-kind seaborne school set up in 2015, which accepts 64 students a year aged 16 to 19 and travels to up to 20 cities. The fully rigged ship is managed by 20 staff members, comprising 10 academic staff and 10 maritime staff.

A+ World Academy ship

A+ World Academy ship

All students on board must study the core courses. This includes Maritime Training, Self System and Society and AP We Service Learning. The other courses available for students to choose from include English Literature, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, Maths, World Languages or the Capstone Programme. Course options are subject to change each year but two options for each subject area will be available.

With no access to Wifi on board, students are kept busy with carrying out their maritime work, of which they are expected to do two hours a day and two hours at night, and participating in extracurricular activities. Pupils can partake in one of the many clubs such as the baking, karaoke or movie nights to name a few. The activities are endless and allow pupils to spend time socialising together. 

Of course, 67 students living on a ship begs the question of where the pupils and staff sleep. It may come as a surprise that they sleep in hammocks that are hung to the ceiling of the ship. This utilitises space on the ship effectively and is said to be strangely comfortable.

The ship operates on an cycle, which can vary each voyage, as it travels from port to port. During the sea travel days, students will attend lessons. 

The school day follows a set schedule which helps set a routine for the students. They wake up bright and early at 7.30am, and the day is split into maritime duties, lessons, food breaks and extra-curricular time. Every student gets a quiet hour at 9pm where they can enjoy an activity of their choosing such as reading. The day ends at 10pm. 

Once docked in a country, students are able to spend five to seven days there, where they will be able to explore on-land, visiting cultural and historical landmarks that will enhance their learning. This gives the students an incredible opportunity to delve deeper into what they are learning about, get involved in the local cultures and try new activities. 

The 2023-2024 voyage plan took students to 15 destinations including: Norway, France; Portugal, Spain, Cabo Verde, Grenada, Puerto Rico, Bermuda and the Netherlands. 

The cost of the school is €64,500. This includes accommodation, board, activities, school uniform, sailing gear, textbooks, travel and medical insurance.

A+ Academy has a rolling admission. You can apply at any time. aplusworldacademy.com