Why a British Education?
According to ISC Research, there are more than six and a half million pupils studying at more than 11,000 English medium international schools around the world. Of those schools, more than 6,000 are British schools – schools with a British national orientation, and/or using elements of the English national curriculum. British education has a strong reputation worldwide, with parents choosing British schools for the broad, balanced curriculum and teaching that equips pupils with the skills and qualifications to enter, or re-enter, the UK education system at school, college, or university level. Quality British schools overseas provide opportunities for a wide range of extra-curricular opportunities, strong welfare support, and promote an understanding of modern British society.
In order to gain or retain membership of COBIS, British international schools must engage with a quality assurance scheme every five years, such as COBIS Patron's Accreditation and Compliance, BSO inspection, or CIS Accreditation.
The Patron's Accreditation and Compliance is a rigorous quality assurance scheme for British schools overseas that supports schools on their development journey and actively supports whole school improvement ensuring the best possible educational environments for children and young people worldwide. The Patron's Accreditation and Compliance is the primary route to COBIS membership. The rigorous standards cover Recruitment, Student Welfare, Facilities, Governance, Educational Ethos and Values, Boarding (where applicable), Learning and Teaching, Leadership, Communication, and Extra-curricular Activities and Community.
The Department for Education (DfE) also has a voluntary scheme for the inspection of British Schools Overseas (BSO), whereby schools are inspected against a common set of standards. Inspectorates approved by the DfE and monitored by the English schools' inspectorate Ofsted can inspect BSOs. They produce inspection reports which are made available to parents through the DfE's website. This provides parents with information about the quality of provision within the inspected school, and its compatibility with independent schools in the UK. Schools who opt to undergo the BSO process are welcomed by COBIS as Accredited Members. For more information on the BSO process, please see here.