Advice for Parents
Why a British curriculum?
All COBIS schools follow a curriculum that is focused on British educational ethos and values. But what does this mean in practice? Here is some further detail, drawn from our Accreditation Standards.
Our schools typically:
- Have a holistic approach to the curriculum where pupils are given a range of opportunities in and out of the classroom to help develop important learner attributes - like being enquiring and open-minded - and human qualities like care, tolerance and respect for others
- Encourage students to engage actively, ethically and purposefully with the world around them and to learn about, and respect, other cultures and beliefs
- Are committed to educating the whole child and to learning which embraces a range of appropriate teaching styles
- Are committed to a learning environment which is secure and stimulating
- Have a strong safeguarding culture which includes not only an unwavering commitment to child protection but also the emotional, physical and mental health and well-being of every child
- Recruit staff who are not only well-qualified and appropriately trained but whose identity background and criminal history have been thoroughly checked and experience verified by school leaders who have worked with them
- Have caring pastoral systems which support the learning and welfare of all children
- Subscribe to quality assurance common in the UK
- Offer public examinations (where applicable) which are recognised in the UK
- Use common UK-style models of assessment, feedback and reporting
- Will have active and engaged governance which holds the school leadership accountable and provides strategic direction and critical friendship to those leaders
- Have staff who have open access to Continuous Professional Learning and Development (CPLD)
- Offer the ability for students to transfer to the UK, or to other British international schools
- Provide quality guidance for students applying to higher education around the world
Why a COBIS school?
If you feel your child will thrive in a school with a British educational ethos, a COBIS school may be the right choice. But why choose a COBIS school? What does this mean?
Parents familiar with the education system in the UK are often surprised to hear that there are often no formal requirement for British international schools to be inspected, or undertake quality assurance. There are some regional exceptions to this, and these schools will frequently publish inspection reports on their website. But if they don’t, how do you know the school you are considering for your child is a safe environment where your child will thrive and learn?
A COBIS school offers parents peace of mind as all our schools are quality assured to a high level. This is either through our Patron’s Accreditation and Compliance scheme, or through an external validation process – BSO inspection, administered by the British government, or CIS accreditation, administered by the Council of International Schools.
Our COBIS Accreditation Standards can be found here and set the bar high. Schools can achieve either Compliance (Standards 1-6) or Accreditation (Standards 1-10).
Standard 1: Safeguarding and Safer Recruitment
The school places a high priority on the safeguarding of students and staff, including child protection, and the safe recruitment of appropriately qualified and experienced staff.
Standard 2: Student Welfare
The school provides a safe and supportive environment for all young people.
Standard 3: Facilities
The school provides all students with access to an environment conducive to learning and that keeps them safe.
Standard 4: Governance
The school’s governors work to support students and the strategic direction of the school.
Standard 5: Ethos and Values
The school has an evident British educational ethos, is outward-looking and promotes international mindedness.
Standard 6: Boarding (if applicable)
The school is pro-active in ensuring the high standards of health and safety, security, pastoral and academic support in the school extend to boarding provision.
Standard 7: Learning and Teaching
The school recognises that its core business is learning and teaching and that the quality of this helps to define the school. The school celebrates and supports the development of high-quality learning and teaching for all students and encourages positive attitudes to learning.
Standard 8: Leadership in the School
The high quality of leadership, at all levels and in different areas, guided by the educational ethos and values of the institution, creates the conditions in which students, staff and the school can thrive and develop.
Standard 9: Communication
The school communicates effectively with parents to keep them informed and to support the progress of their children. Parents have the opportunity to be actively engaged in the life of the school.
Standard 10: Extra-Curricular, Enrichment and Engagement
The school offers a wide range of clubs, activities and charitable, community and global opportunities which exemplify and strengthen its educational ethos and values, promote good health and well-being and, through the active, ethical and purposeful engagement with the outside world, enrich learning and the development of learner and human qualities.
How will my child’s education be enriched by attending a COBIS school?
COBIS schools offer a high standard of learning and an environment which is safe and secure. But in addition, your child will be part of a global school community. Our student competitions and events enable all students to engage with this global community, through a varied programme of competitions and events. Find out more here.
COBIS schools invest in the development of their staff, supporting them in their own learning journey. COBIS offers an excellent programme of CPD and professional development. Our schools can also be centres of excellence for training through our Training Schools initiative, sharing their best practice with other schools in their area.
COBIS schools also help to promote a British-style education in their home countries. We work with the British government, through relationships with the Department for Education and the Department for International Trade, to ensure our schools are the voice of our sector. Many of our schools have pupils which return to the UK to continue their studies at a UK university.
Your child can be a part of this global community. Our schools look forward to showing you what an amazing adventure learning can be.