Academic Year 2020 FAQ

Questions from Year 1 parents

Due to uncertain factors, in the following academic term will the school provide remote lessons for all subjects.

Depending on the epidemiological situation, in case there is a need, the College will be able to provide a remote learning program for all of its subjects.

Do students need to bring their own laptops?

The College does not provide students with laptops and they are necessary tool throughout the IB progrm, so it is preferable if students bring their own (or tablet computers).

How and when will parents have contact/feedback from the teachers?

The College sends two reports each term (a mid-term and a end-of-term report). Comments from teachers and tutors are included in the reports at the end of each term. Tutors are the main point of contacts for all academic matters and communicate with the parents continuously throughout
the academic year.

Where can parents find an information about teachers of UWCiM?

There is basic iformation about our teachers in the College’s website. Parents also have access to MangeBac, where the name and email address of the teachers and tutor of a student can be found.

Do we have to buy the school books or are they provided?

The school provides students with digital and/or hard copies of the books necessary for the IB program. Nevertheless, students who take their first language as a self-taught subject are advised to purchase books for this program in their home countries, before coming to Mostar.
UWC Mostar only offers English, German, Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian as Language A subjects.

What graphing calculator do the students generally use in lessons?

Most of the students are provided with a TI-84 plus GDC. Students who take Mathematics HL are provided with a TI N-spire GDC. However, students who own a GDC are encouraged to bring it and use it during the program.

Is there extra help for students with limited previous second language exposure?

The College has an English support system in place. Students meet an English teacher on a regular basis, either duirng a free block or in after school sessions, throughout term 1 and may continue in term 2 according to their needs.

In which date are students supposed to be in Mostar to start the program?

Year 2 students should start arriving from the 17.08. Year 1 students start arriving from the 22.08. It was planned for all of our students to arrive by 23.08., but due to the anticipated impact of COVID-19 on travel restrictions we intend to keep our arrival times more flexible

I’m planning to travel with my child before the program starts. Can I leave their luggage at your facilities a few days before the program starts?

There is a storage space that could be used for storing luggage.

Because the parents won’t travel with the kids, who is going to pick them in the closest airport? Are we going to have a Whats App communication with this person?

College will organise pick up from the airports. Admissions Coordinator will be sending transportation details and will be available as a contact person.

Will you be meeting the students at the airport and if so, which airport? Would for
example an airport in nearby Split, Croatia work?

Same as answer above. Spit airport is one of the airports closest to Mostar and pickup of students is commonly organized.

I would like to ask a question about visa from USA?

US citizens do not need visa to enter Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Do UK citizens need a visa?

UK citizens do not need visa to enter Bosnia and Herzegovina.

If we have a visa free entry for 90 days (New Zealand). Is there a special visa category
for students to allow longer stays?

New Zealand citizens do not need visa to enter Bosnia and Herzegovina. Students need to get one year residence permit and that process is regulated during 90 days of allowed stay.

What is the best airport to fly into to?

Sarajevo (BiH) and Split (Croatia) are preferred options. Alternatively Tuzla (BiH), Dubrovnik (Croatia) and Podgorica (Montenegro) are fairly close to Mostar too.

What if there are no flights provided in my country?

There should be some connection flights available via major airport hubs (Istanbul, Doha, Dubai, Frankfurt, Vienna). Those are usually well connected with the airport’s in Mostar’s vicinity (Sarajevo, Split, Dubrovnik)

Is it possible to have an address in UWC Mostar so we can use it in the future to send items there before or after the arrival of the students?

Most items can be sent to the College address: Španski trg 1, 88000, Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Is there WiFi for the kids in the dorms and class?

All dorms and academic buildings have access to WiFi (free of charge).

Regarding that college does not have its own campus, where the students can get a medical help?

Medical services are provided at the health institutions (local hospitals) which are part of the College’s health insurance contract.

How is the feeding process organized in breakfast/lunch/dinner time? Where do the
students have their meals?

Breakfast and dinner are served in the residences. During the working days lunch is served in the College canteen. On weekends and holidays all meals are served in the residences.

About the telecommunications, I guess the kids should have a “local” phone number/SIM. Because they are under 18 years old, are they allowed to buy/get at least the SIM Card?

It is recommended that the students get a local SIM card (approx 5 Euros) – also available at the airport.
They can be purchased regardless of the age.

None of the Bangladeshi students have received their acceptance letters, do you know anything about this issue?

Students will be sent the acceptance letters this week, Delay is due to the visa related issues. It may still not be possible to get a BiH visa as access to the consulate in India is not possible. Students could travel with Schengen visa but would have to fly through the country to which the Schengen has been issued. Also, the student will need to obtain a D visa within a month of being in BiH.

When will we be able to receive the Welcome pack?

Already sent.

We have not received the necessary documents for school registration, payment and immigration paperwork.

All is explained in joining papers. Instruction for payment will be send by the end of June.

Do new students need to do a medical and send the documents?

Students need to bring with them the Medical Report Form (please see Instruction for International students in joining papers for more details).

When are you sending the documents that are required to request student visas at BH’s consulate?

Sent on 8 June.

Will there be individual session for advising each newcomer student to choose subjects from the 6 categories according to their plans for studying?

Students can and should discuss their subject choices with their tutors as soon as they are allocated. They can also find information about the IB program and subjects on the IBO website and they may address individual questions to the Deputy Head.

How quickly from our arriving time will we have to decide our subjects for the IB?

Students should complete a preliminary selection of subjects before they come to Mostar. One in Mostar, they have to finalize and confirm their selection of subjects in the first three days of the induction week. Once classes start, there is a period where subject changes are allowed, according to the procedure that is communicated in due time.

Do students choose school subjects and what is the procedure?

Students have to choose 1 subject from each of the 6 subject groups prescribed by the IB program. 3 subjects must be selected at the Higher Level and the other three at the Standard level; no other combination of subject levels is allowed in UWC Mostar. A subject selection form with instructions is sent to all students and must be completed as soon as possible.

Is Further Maths still an option or is it no longer an IB subject?

The curriculum for all Math courses has changed last year and Further Mathematics has been
removed from the subject options.

Could we have the name of the official IB Mathematics book so that we could already try to find the right level?

We use a combination of books for the Math courses, but the ones we use more frequently for practicing are those published by Oxford University Press. We use three for the books: “Oxford IB Diploma Programme: IB Mathematics: analysis and approaches, Higher Level”, “Oxford IB Diploma Programme: IB Mathematics: analysis and approaches, Standard Level” and “Oxford IB Diploma Programme: IB Mathematics: applications and interpretation, Standard Level”

Will there be any source for getting prepared for the placement test for English and Maths?

The College will send information and basic material for students to get familiarized with the terminology and the prior knowledge required for the Math courses.

If there are language literature courses is it possible to know the books in advance so students can start reading now?

The College offers the English Language and Literature course. The list of books is communicated at the start of the academic year in September.

Will French be available in the curriculum /IF there’s enough demand, would it be possible to add French again as a language B?/ If French B offered in the IB?

French language will not be offered by the College independent of the demand for the subject.
However, French A literature can be taken as a School Supported Self Taught course.

I saw on the official website that as language B you can also take Spanish. Will there be a level test also for Spanish?

There is no official placement test to join Spanish B. The subject teacher assesses the level of the students during the course to check their suitability for the level.

I want to ask about the language selection – how is it going and what are the requirements or the what is it based on to select if it is language A or B?

The College offers English, German, Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian as Language A subjects.
There is a placement test for English Language to ensure that students will not face major difficulties in the “Literature” or “Language and Literature” courses. Based on the results of the placement test, students are allowed to select one of the English A courses, otherwise they are placed in English B. There are other instances during the first term when students will be
assessed again to switch levels from B to A.

Is mother tongue mandatory as language A for local students?

It is not compulsory to take one’s mother tongue as a language A. If the placement test is satisfactory, a student can take English A. Otherwise, if their level is appropriate, students may also try one of the other Language A courses offered by the College.

How does it work with doing a self-taught language?/Can you explain more about the self taught section?

Other A languages that are not offered (taught by a teacher of the language) by the College fall under the category of School Suported Self Taught (SSST) languages. Students who take their mother tongue as SSST language will meet the SSST teacher on a regular basis. During the SSST lessons, they will discuss the general and specific requirements and skills for the course,
including a list of books that each student will be reading. The teacher will follow up on the progress of each individual in the class and will make sure that the IB assessment components are completed in time. The teacher will also provide guidance on how to conduct the oral assessment. Since the teacher is not expected to be proficient on any particular language of the
SSST course, they will not be able to provide specific language related support.

Is the Project Week still happening this year?

Project Week is happening but the format will be change in accordance with the circumstances. Instead of projects in BiH and the region, projects this upcoming school year will be taking place in Mostar and its immediate vicinity.

Is there a piano available for the students and if yes, how is its use regulated?

The music room is currently situated in one of the residences – Musala residence. All students who wish to play an instrument have access to the music room. However the location and terms of usage might be changed during the upcoming year. There is a piano among other instruments, but we are looking into acquiring a new one.

Is the FIRST Robotics Project still ongoing? If not, can we restart it?

No, we have not participated in the First competition for the last three years, however robotics still exist and if the group of respective students is enthusiastic and serious enough it can be restarted.

How does Project Week work?

Project Weeks happen once every school year , usually in October) and are a unique experience that allows students to travel around the region and take UWC learning out of the classroom and into the real world. The possibilities of Project Weeks are endless — ranging from direct action, like building houses, to street art in Sarajevo, or extreme hiking. There is always at least one faculty supervisor for each Project Week, who is the legal and responsible adult. However this year all the projects will take place in Mostar and its immediate vicinity in order to keep the travelling to a minimum. Majority of the projects this year are planned as part of the Mostar Street Art festival and should allow students to experience the intervention in the city space.

How does cycling work? Are bikes rented or bought for the CAS? Are you allowed to cycle outside of CAS? Are there restrictions as to how far you can cycle?

There is a certain number of bicycles owned by the College students that are used as part of the CAS program and can be borrrowed in coordination with the biking CAS leaders and supervisor for day trips.
CAS group often organizes cycling trips open to all community members. Those usually take place around Mostar. During the Project Week cycling trips around the southern region of Herzegovina are organized.

How much support is the school able to offer to students that want to start their own CAS?

If a students want to start a new CAS, the first step is to talk to the Co-Curricular Coordinator, fill out the CAS planning form and gather people that are interested in joining the activity. Once there are committed members and approval from the Co-Curricular Coordinator, the activity will become a Club – and if it works out for a whole term, it is transformed into a CAS Project. When starting a Club, it is important to ensure that the activity can sustain itself, fulfills the CAS guidelines, and takes place consistently. Student activities (clubs, events, CAS projects) are all supported by the school logistically and financially within a reasonable framework.

The thing is that because of the pandemic both us, me and my husband, are in a
complicated financial situation as our incomes depend on a regularly working society.
Could this be taken into account in any way? Is there a possibility of a student loan or some kind of payment in several phases?

The College offers payment in up to three installments (August, December, March). In specific circumstances, the College can offer delayed payments and payments in more installments. However, the full fee needs to be paid by the end of the school year.

We’re interested about what’s not covered by the scholarship, (e.g. school material,
medicine, meals, house keeping material, etc.).

Not covered by scholarship: residence permit fee, damage fee, pocket money, travel cost, personal items (clothing, laptops), non IB examination and test fees (e.g. SAT).

Right now the kids are “minors” (at least in our country they should be older than 18),
we’re wondering a safe way for transferring money to him (maybe a credit or debit card),
what is your recommendation?

The best is if the student can have the card to be able to withdraw the money in Mostar. It is possible for minors also to open bank account here but it is lengthy process as that cannot be done before the residence permit is issued (takes up to 3-4 months).

Are there any mandatory fees outside the tuition?

Yes, residence permit fee of 150 Euros and damage fee of 25 Euros need to be paid upon arrival in cash.

Do students open bank accounts in Mostar?

Answered under financial – 3

Is Euro accepted? Should our kids have a card to use?

It is possible to exchange Euros, but all the transactions are made in local currency – convertible mark KM.

What is a reasonable monthly allowance for a student in Mostar?

75 Euros

Do the students have Insurance coverage through the UWC? Or do we need to fix an
Insurance through a Company in our own country? This may be difficult now due to the
pandemic.

Student have medical insurance that covers expenses of medical examination and hospital expenses by general practitioners and specialist doctors only at the medical institutions prescribed by the College’s
health insurance provider. Medications prescribed by doctors are also included in the College health insurance. College does not cover medications for students diagnosed with any kind of medical conditions
prior to arrival to the College, regular check up with dentist, regular check up with an ophthalmologist. More details are available in Medical Report Form that is part of Joining Papers

In case of an emergency, how can parents reach the college council?

Parents are encouraged to reach the Admissions Incharge Ivona Susac till they are informed about the. Tutor for their child. Post that, it works best to contact the Tutor for all matters. For any residential matters, the email ID of the House Parents will also be shared with the parents. For emergencies, important contacts (email and phone) like that of the Head of College, The Deputy Head and the Director of Student Wellbeing will also be shared.

Where can we find some information about the college staff (teachers)?

Our website has this information and it will be updated soon for the academic year.

Can we get more details about enrollment at UWC and more information about school program. What is expected from parents in supporting school program?

The information regarding the school programe has been shared with you in the Joining Papers. Support from parents is always appreciated. If you are associated with a field that is relevant to the college and the
students, and would be willing to contribute to the staff and student learning, please let us know and we will be happy to invite you when the opportunity arises to contribute in some way like a talk, workshop etc.

Please send clarification on the clothing requirements/ dress code suggestions for females so we can ensure that only appropriate clothing arrives with our student.

Mostar has a range of weather from very hot summers to very cold and windy winters. When the students just arrive, it will be quite warm and thin, lose, cotton, comfortable clothes would ideal for all. In the fall,
there will a need for thin jackets or hoodies. Mostar rains are unpredictable and umbrellas will be needed as they start. Winters may need good warm jackets, trousers, caps, gloves, boots etc. Snow is rare in Mostar, only around a couple of times a year usually but may be encountered much more just a little out of Mostar. The dress code is in line with the dress code of the other school we share the building with (and all public offices in BiH) and thus, in the school premises, the length of dresses and shorts should be at least till the knee, shoulders should be covered and mid riff should not be exposed. More details will be available in the Dress Policy in the student handbook

What scenarios are you estimating can occur at the beginning of this academic year?

At the moment, we are planning to open as per schedule. We may need to have staggered arrivals and have a blended (in person and online combination) start.

What if one student gets infected while in Mostar? Do you have a contingency plan?

The College has considered various possible situations. On a student being diagnosed with Covid 19, we will be able to conduct testing for those in contact and provide a sparate isolation facility with care. The college will comply with all instructions from the local Public Health Authority.

Is there any protocol in case our country has not re-opened its borders by the start of the academic year?

In case student arrival is delayed, we will have a blended (in person and online combination) start, so the students—-MISSING

If there is a two week quarantine upon arrival, will you request the students to arrive two weeks early, stay two weeks later in December, or will that time be integrated with the start of school? If there are quarantine measures due to the pandemic in our country, should we plan to have our student stay in Mostar for winter break? If this is an option, what is the cost?

At the moment, there is no mandatory 2-week quarantine requirement. Arrival of the students will be organized as planned. It is anticipated that the students will have to be tested on COVID-19 prior and/or upon arrival.
Depending on the travel restrictions and epidemiological situation, students may be required to stay in Mostar during the Winter Break or join host family program. All costs should be covered.

(Since UWCiM does not have a closed campus) How to avoid or reduce to contact with the outside world and reduce probability of being infected?

We will communicate and continue to revisit clear and strict instructions with all our students and staff. We will have ealier check-ins and dicourage students from interacting with the locals as temporary measures.
We have done this with the students who have been with us through the summer and it does work. We have faith that our students will put their own and their peers wellness first and partner with us in this.

Will students be allowed to return home for the winter break?

Depending on the travel restrictions, students may be required to stay in Mostar during the Winter Break.

Are we supposed to have our children tested 48 hours prior to arrival, or whether they will be tested there, or both?

At the moment, the pre 48 hour testing is needed as a BiH government requirement but this may change and the college will keep you informed. However, testing on arrival to the college will be carried out in addition as a precaution.

How can the school solve the issue of zero normal flight is provided from China to Sarajevo due to air traffic control?

Unfortunately, this is not in our control. Online learning will be provided for those who can definitely have a delayed arrival. For those unable to join at all, deferring the joining to next year can be discussed.

If the pandemic continues, does the college consider to allow the students continue studying in nearby UWC college for the following semester?

This is not possible at present, but could be explored as an option. Such decisions are not made by the College, but have to be agreed on the level of the entire UWC organization.

In case a student has to travel alone to Sarajevo due to COVID-19 measures, would somebody from UWC Mostar be able to welcome her/him in the Airport to assist her/him to travel to Mostar?

Students will be picked up at the Sarajevo airport.

In case of another shutdown in Bosnia because of COVID-19 and the children have to stay in Mostar, do you have plans to ensure that the students continue with the academic program and also all of them can live in the residences?

In case of another lockdown, students should remain in the residences and continue with the program remotely.

Could you tell us a little bit on how the COVID-19 will affect the housing of the students?

Extra hygiene measures and regular sanitation will be taken care of. Room mates will be considered a family unit.

Could you tell us a little bit on how the COVID-19 will affect the education of the students. Will class sizes be reduced, part-time online lessons?

At the moment there are not specific government regulated requirements in terms of the number of students per class. College will follow the guidelines provided by the local public health authority.

Could you tell us a little bit on how the COVID-19 will affect the meals and catering of the students? Will they have the meals together?

Depending on the epidemiological situation, students will either be served the meals in the college canteen or have food delivered to the residences.

How is healthcare managed? Is it likely the kids have a two week quarantine period ? If they are coming from a very long distance are they able to arrive a little earlier than the given date?

Heath care is managed with the help of a full time nurse and a contract with a local hospital. At the moment, there is no official requirement for the two week quarantine period. However, students will be instructed not to interact with each other when they arrive till they are tested and the results are negative. Considering the pandemic, arrival dates will be relaxed.

What are the plans to keep social distancing when students arrive at school? I am asking because everyone will be coming from different parts of the world with different exposures to COVID-19.

Students should be tested prior or upon arrival. Once cleared out they should be able to join the college community.

Are there any extra restrictions anticipated during the classes and housing in distancing for instance due to the Corona virus?

The college will follow all directions of the local health authorities, including any social distancing requirements.

My question is whether it is plans to have regular sanitation of the dorms to avoid spread of Covid-19?

Sanitation of both, residential and academic premises will be carried out regularly.

Is there a welcoming day for parents in August?/Will there be kind of a parents day during the first school week?

Welcoming day for parents is organized in normal circumstances. This year it may be done online or in a blended way dependent on the epidemiological situation and travel restrictions in August.

Are parents who can’t travel at the moment welcome to visit later once their borders open?

Considering the uncertainties around the pandemic, we would advise parents to travel only when the situation is clear. In case of everything being normal, we would welcome parents visiting for short duration.

Are parents who can travel usually expected to accompany the students or is it better for them to start without parents around?

Parents are not expected to accompany the students, but they are more than welcome, in case they can travel.

Is the study break in October a good moment for parents to visit?

It usually is. This year it will entirely depend on the epidemiological situation.

Is there a possibility to choose the student’s dorm in advance?

Not for the first-year students.

Is there a curfew/control in the evening?

Yes, 22:30 weekdays and Sundays, 23:00 on Fridays and Saturdays for minors and midnight for 18+.

Will the new residence be ready by the time we get there?/Will the new residence be ready by the 2020 academic year?

Due to the pandemic there has been a delay in the process of furnishing and equipping the new residence (Šantić). It should be ready from the beginning of November.

Does the home / place where the kids live have a kitchen / wash machine / iron / dishes / blender / microwave / pans / etc?

Basic necessary equipment is provided in the residence kitchens and laundry room. Some students prefer to bring/buy specific pans etc that they like to use as per their needs.

When will the student receive info on their housing and how will the allocation for the
three houses take place?

The students receive the info in the beginning of August. There are criteria we follow when making the allocation plan (diversity in first and second year students, gender, countries, languages)

Is there any laundry service available for students, or they are expected to do laundry themselves?

They do it themselves. Washing and drying machines are available in all residences.

Will there be a list of things students need to bring?

Yes, this has been shared in the joining papers.

Should we regulate residence regarded issues from home or everything we need to do is already in BiH?

It should be possible to meet most of your needs to set up your child in the residence in Mostar. If you have a specific requirement that you envisage as difficult to meet, please let us know in adavnce so we can advise you.

Are students responsible for cleaning their own rooms and changing their bed sheets or is that service provided?

Students are responsible for maintaining hygiene of their own rooms on top of the regular cleaning service that is provided.

Is there emotional support program, responsible or department for students?

We have a support net comprised of the Counseling Department, Director of students’ well-being, tutoring system and house parents. They cooperate closely together in order to provide supportive environment for
our students. Specifically, Counseling department provides professional and confidential brief counseling, this service provides a safe and confidential space for students to explore difficulties, to gain a better
understanding of themselves, others, relationships. Likewise, they communicate with all the parties of support net by giving guidance, information (if it complies with the Confidentiality Policy) and participate in finding solutions.

Are students warned about any risk during their trips or tours in the area?

Students will be given generic safety instructions during the induction week and specific instructions before every official trip.

Is there a doctor in residence or a reference hospital?

The school has one employed nurse and a contract with the local hospital

Is there cooperation with universities in the USA or EUROPE for admissions of students from Mostar?

The University Guidance Counselor works with the students to apply to universites of their choice, in the US, Europe and in other places in the world too. Majority partnerships at the moment are with US universities due to the availability of Davis scholarships. However, a considerable number of students do go to universities in Europe too.

What are the prospects of a UWCiM graduate?

Most of our students go to colleges and universities in the US, UK and other countries in Europe, with the majority going to the US and a smaller percentage to other parts of the world.
We have a dedicated College Counselor who supports the college application process from the beginning to the end.

In what universities do most of the graduates apply?

Many of our students apply to universities in the US, that provide very good scholarships, through the Davis UWC Scholars program.

How is the admission process supported by the College?

The college has a full time University Guidance Counselor who introduces and supports the students through the complete university application process. The teachers provide recommendations and sessions with a variety of universities and colleges are organised for the students to make informed choices. The college also helps in selecting and registering for
appropriate college admission tests.

Which factors define the size of a Davis scholarship and how is it calculated?

The Davis scholarship only applies to UWC students applying to US universities on US grounds (so, scholarship is not applicable to students applying to US universities around the world, nor UWC students who are applying to other (eg EU) universities). It is determined between Shelby
Davis Foundation and partner schools. Some universities are supported by 20, 000 USD per student per annum, and the majority of partner schools are supported by 10, 000 per student per annum. Students automatically receive this scholarship from partner institutions if they demonstrate
financial need. Therefore, students do not apply for the scholarship, but receive it directly with the financial aid package.
Partner Institutions determine additional school scholarships. In some schools, students only receive Shelby Davis scholarships, while in other schools, depending on the student financial need, schools meet the rest of the requirement.

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