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CEO Sustainability Series |Yves Marcel, Executive Director, International French School (Singapore)

As part of the Sustainable Business initiative, the French Chamber of Commerce in Singapore presents a leadership interview series where we invite CEOs and key executives to discuss crucial management qualities that drive successful sustainable transformation


Question 1 : What does sustainability mean to your organisation?

Like other educational institutions, the International French School in Singapore is responsible for promoting sustainability and integrating sustainable practices into its operations. When discussing sustainability in the context of the school, two key areas are at the forefront of our planning and operations:

1. Environmental sustainability: The school looks at how to take measures to reduce its environmental impact by adopting sustainable practices such as recycling, reducing waste, and using alternative sustainable energy sources. The school also promotes environmental awareness among its students and encourages them to take actions to reduce their carbon footprint.

2. Economic sustainability: The school strives for economic sustainability by making responsible financial decisions that ensure the school's long-term viability while supporting sustainable practices.


Q2 : What is the school doing to make it a benchmark for sustainable and energy-efficient design?

The new IFS Kindergarten BCA Green Mark Platinum (Zero Energy) building will be a landmark kindergarten in Singapore. The kindergarten is designed to incorporate advanced green technology, including rainwater harvesting systems, energy-efficient lighting, hybrid air-conditioning, and photovoltaic energy generation. This zero-energy kindergarten will be the only one of its kind in Singapore and demonstrates the school's commitment to creating an environmentally conscious future.

The new kindergarten, scheduled for completion in 2025, will maximise natural light and ventilation, with large windows and open spaces that promote air circulation and reduce the need for artificial lighting and air conditioning. The interior of the classrooms will be re-configurable, with large sliding glass walls for flexible pedagogical usage, and on the exterior, have large double-glazed windows, protected by colourful sun-shading fins & mesh to achieve excellent thermal transfer values.

One of the standout features of the building will be its use of photovoltaic panels. These solar panels are installed on the roof of the building and will generate 300MWh of electricity annually from sunshine. The electricity generated will be used to supply the school's daily needs for lighting and air conditioning systems; with an extremely low carbon footprint, it has zero reliance on fossil fuels or the public electricity grid.


Q3 : How does IFS integrate sustainability into its primary and secondary school curriculum?

IFS places a great emphasis on environmental sustainability, teaching students from an early age the value of renewable energy, waste reduction, and green living. IFS has integrated ecological sustainability into its primary and secondary school curriculum. In the classroom, students are taught the basics of environmental science, exploring topics such as climate change, air pollution, and species diversity. They also learn how to reduce their own impacts, such as conserving energy and recycling.

IFS's commitment to environmental sustainability is integral to its mission to provide a holistic education that prepares students for a rapidly changing world. By prioritising sustainability, the school sets an example for its students and the community, demonstrating that environmental consciousness is crucial for a sustainable future.



This interview was conducted with Yves Marcel, Executive Director, International French School (Singapore)

April 2023| French Chamber of Commerce in Singapore


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