September 2014 | COBIS Connect


COBIS Connect - September 2014
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In This Issue:

1.   Welcome from Colin Bell, COBIS CEO
2.   Dates For Your Diaries
3.   New COBIS Member Schools
4.   School Member News
5.   COBIS Student Competitions & Events
6.   Professional Development
7.   COBIS Webinars
8.   News from COBIS Schools Around the World   
9.   Supporting Member News
10. Contact Us

Welcome from Colin Bell, COBIS CEO

Dear Colleague,

As the new academic year begins, welcome back to you, your colleagues, students, governors and to all members of your school community.  

Putting the needs of our school and supporting members first, the commitment, expertise and professional support which COBIS provides will continue to be delivered to a first class standard.

I am delighted to introduce Catriona and Tamsin, 2 new colleagues to join the COBIS HQ team. Both will be an asset COBIS. Welcome also to new staff members working at COBIS member schools. Without doubt, teaching assistants, other support staff, teachers, bursars and school leaders are all valued members of the COBIS family of schools. In addition, our positive thoughts go to member schools in West Africa, many of which are experiencing challenging circumstances and temporary school closures in the face of the ebola outbreak. Our best wishes for a speedy and safe resolve.

Congratulations to all COBIS students and staff on their collective achievements with the publication of examination results and every continued success to students embarking on new learning and personal adventures as they set off for a new life at university!

The autumn term will see the launch of the new COBIS World Student magazine, a range of student competitions, the revised COBIS annual survey (including examination results and university  destinations) and the requirement for COBIS Member and Candidate Schools to undertake Safer Recruitment and Child Protection training (costs covered by COBIS).

Finally, on behalf of the COBIS Board and the team at Head Office, please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or suggestions as to how our association can better serve your needs and the needs of your vibrant school community.

Kind regards,
Colin Bell

Dates for Your Diaries

COBIS Conference for Bursars, Business Managers, and HR Staff - Booking Now Open
17-18 October 2014 - Geneva English School, Switzerland

COBIS/King's Group Student Leadership Weekend - Booking Now Open
17-19 October 2014 - King's College, Madrid, Spain

COBIS Conference for Teachers and Support Staff
- Booking Now Open

Leadership at all Levels – Unlocking Potential Throughout the School Community
20-21 October 2014 - The British School of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

COBIS Governor's Training Day - Booking Now Open
20 October 2014 - The British School of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

COBIS Pupil-Centred Pastoral Care Conference - Booking Now Open
7-8 November 2014 - The British School of Bucharest, Romania

Teachable Moments - The Key to Success in the Early Years
EYFS Training Days, in association with COBIS
3 January 2015 (Teachers and Leaders) and 5 January 2015 (TAs and Support Staff)
Rainbow International School, Kampala, Uganda

COBIS Conference for Teachers and Support Staff and Four-Day Middle Leaders’ Programme
2-3 March 2015 (Middle Leaders 28 February – 3 March 2015)
St Catherine’s British School, Greece

COBIS Conference for Teachers and Four-Day Middle Leaders’ Programme - NEW DATES
Future Learners – The Challenge of a New Environment
20-21 March 2015 (Middle Leaders 19-22 March 2015)
The British School of Beijing, China

COBIS Conference for Teachers, Leaders and Support Staff
Students Taking Ownership of their Learning
16-17 April 2015

Grange School, Nigeria

COBIS Conference for Marketing, Development and Admissions Staff
Stakeholder Engagement: the Past, the Present and the Prospective
23-24 April 2015

Dubai College, United Arab Emirates

34th COBIS Annual Conference

9-11 May 2015
Park Plaza Hotel, London

New COBIS Member Schools

COBIS is delighted to welcome 1 new school into membership.

Verita International School

COBIS is delighted to welcome a new Candidate School member. Verita International School is located in Bucharest, Romania and will open in September 2014. The school will welcome 40 pupils from Nursery to Year 3, expanding to include up to Year 6 over the next 2 years.

School founder Richard Joannides said upon accepting COBIS Candidate School membership, "We have embarked on an exciting new journey with Verita School. Laying the groundwork and solid foundation is of utmost importance for the future and we look forward to working together with COBIS to set the right course and direction".

On behalf of COBIS, we would like to welcome all the staff at Verita International School into COBIS membership.

School Member News

COBIS Member Schools - Staff Changes

COBIS is pleased to welcome the following new staff in COBIS schools. We look forward to working with you.

Brighton College Abu Dhabi
New Head - Alun Yorath

Brighton College Al Ain
Acting Head - David Tongue

Britannica International School Shanghai
New Head - David Goodwin

British School of Paris
New Head - Nicholas Hammond

Edron Academy
New Head of Kinder - Mr Cliff Seabrook
New Head of Primary - Ms Janette Quinn

Haileybury Almaty
New Head - Craig Halstall

St Andrew’s School, Turi
Acting Head of the Senior School - Andrew Boulle

St Julian's School, Portugal
New Head - Craig Monaghan

St Paul’s School, Brazil
New Head - Louise Simpson
Crispin Rowe has now retired from St Paul’s

The Alice Smith School
New Head of School - Roger Schultz

COBIS reminds all member schools to notify us of changes to their administrative and senior leadership staff. This will help us stay up to date with all important contacts and make it easier to facilitate dialogue with the appropriate person in each school. To inform us of any changes, please email Fiona Rogers -

Child Protection & Safer Recruitment Training

As you will appreciate, COBIS expects all Accredited, Member and Candidate member schools to have a culture which promotes child protection and safer recruitment to the highest level. Therefore, it is the COBIS expectation that principles of good practice are implemented, following the participation in recognised professional training. As announced during the COBIS annual conference in May 2014, Heads or nominated members of senior leadership teams in all COBIS member schools will now be required to have completed training courses related to the following two subjects, Child Protection and Safer Recruitment. You may have already completed relevant training, however if not, COBIS can advise accordingly.  

Please note that as a requirement of membership, this training requirement will need to be updated every three years. This frequency will be monitored by COBIS as a component of continual membership quality assurance.

If you have already completed Child Protection and Safer Recruitment training courses, please forward relevant details to Natalie Friend –

Should you or a member of your senior leadership team  require training, COBIS will cover the cost of online Child Protection and Safer Recruitment training courses for one member of staff at your school. This online training, accredited by the NSPCC and provided by EduCare, will need to be completed by 31 December 2014.

To register for the Child Protection and Safer Recruitment training, please contact Fiona Rogers For more information about EduCare training courses, please visit our website.

New Staff At COBIS Head Office

COBIS is delighted to welcome 2 new members of staff who have joined the COBIS Head Office team. Tamsin Gordon (pictured left) joins us as our International Marketing Intern, building on the success of the first COBIS intern, Luke Nelson, who left COBIS at the end of August. Tamsin is the alum of several international schools in South America and Europe having moved schools regularly due to her father's job. Tamsin has recently graduated from the University of Loughborough after gaining a degree in Graphic Communications.

Tamsin is pictured with Catriona Lawless who joins the Head Office team as PA to Colin Bell. Catriona brings with her a wealth of education experience after working at National Schools Partnership. Catriona graduated from the University of Birmingham in 2011 with a degree in Sports and Exercise Sciences.

On behalf of COBIS, we hope you will join us in welcoming Tamsin and Catriona to the COBIS Head Office team.

COBIS Membership Subscription Fee - Prompt Payment Required

Invoices for the 2014/15 COBIS membership fee have now been sent to all members. Payment is required by Friday 26 September 2014 so please ensure you pay promptly. If you require a copy of your invoice, please contact Sarah Wooldridge

Please note that school membership certificates will be sent out once payment of the 2014/15 membership fee for your school has been received.

NQT Induction – Registration Deadline Approaching

Qualifying COBIS Accredited Members which have employed NQTs for 2014/15 are reminded that all NQTs must be registered with IStip (or another induction panel) before the deadline (Friday 12 September 2014) in order to complete their induction year. All schools that have had a successful BSO inspection are eligible to provide induction for Newly Qualified Teachers. For more information, or to register NQTs for induction, please visit

COBIS Annual Research Survey

Next month, all COBIS Schools will be asked to take part in the new COBIS Annual Research Survey. This project, delivered in partnership with GL Education, will help us to develop a better understanding of the growing global COBIS family of schools, as well as the British International Education sector as a whole. This research will amalgamate previous COBIS research into examination results and university destinations, while also looking at assessment, curriculum, extra-curricular activities, school development planning, and more. The survey will be completed via an online system (designed and maintained by GL Education) between 6 October and 24 October 2014. All responding schools will be able to access benchmarking data through tailored reports for their Senior Management Teams and Governors.

Colin Bell Comments On The Growth Of International Schools In The TES

COBIS CEO Colin Bell was quoted in an article in the TES on 1 August about the growth of international schools. The article is based on recently released figures from COBIS supporting members the International School Consultancy Group (ISC) which state that the number of students attending international schools rose from 3.3 million last year to 3.6 million in the year to May 2014.

Mr Bell is quoted in the article; "Around half of all students who attend British international schools will go on to study at a British university. That is one of the main reasons as to why there is such high demand for British schools.

"And with the growth in high-quality schools abroad, that in turn leads to a demand in high-quality teachers. UK teachers can now complete their NQT [newly qualified teacher] year abroad in Department for Education-approved schools, and we, along with other representative bodies, are lobbying government to have our schools become teaching schools. All this will lead to growth in the need for UK teachers."

To read the full article, please visit the TES website.

Teaching Assistants In International Schools Is Reviewed In IS Magazine

Teaching Assistants in International Schools, a joint publication between COBIS, the University of Northampton and John Catt Educational, has received an excellent review in the summer edition of International School (IS) magazine. On page 72 of the magazine, Mary Langford, an international school educator now working as an independent consultant with international schools and families, describes the book as "a welcome resource not only for senior leaders and teachers who have the important responsibility of managing TAs in their classrooms, but also for TAs themselves who wish to gain a better overall understanding of the professional considerations that affect their daily work."

To read the full review, please click here. To order your copies of Teaching Assistants in International Schools, please visit the John Catt Educational website.

The summer edition of IS magazine also includes an article about COBIS Accredited Member school Halcyon London International School on pages 59-61. The school opened in September 2013 as an IB Middle Years Programme and IB Diploma Programme candidate school with 34 students in Grades 6 through 9. One year in, Founding Head Terry Hedger and Mary Langford write about the experience so far - both the challenges and the many rewards of this exciting venture.

On pages 67-69 of the magazine, Peter Elting from COBIS Supporting Member the International Teacher Education for Primary Schools (ITEPS), writes about how students from this new degree course have progressed in their first year. The course is a joint venture by teacher training colleges in the Netherlands, Denmark and Norway and is designed to meet the needs of the growing number of teachers who will be working in an international setting. For more information, please visit the ITEPS website.


New British Council Research - As Others See Us: Culture, Attraction and Soft Power

COBIS CEO Colin Bell recently attended the launch of new research conducted by the British Council on what 18–34 year olds in Brazil, China, Germany, India, and the US think about the UK. During the Q&A discussion at the launch event, Colin had the opportunity to highlight the significant influence that COBIS member schools have delivering high quality British education in countries based outside the UK, how this provides thousands of families with a positive disposition to the UK and and in turn, how the flow of students from BSOs to UK Universities is actively promoted.

To read the full report, please click here.

Invitation to Participate - TES Connect's A Teaching Moment in Time Project


COBIS teachers from around the world are invited to take part in a worldwide teaching experiment organised by TES Connect. Teachers can share a moment from their teaching day at 11am on 10 September 2014. These moments will build a picture of teaching around the world, revealing what connects teachers and what makes the teaching profession unique.

Click here to see what happened in last year's A Teaching Moment in Time experiment.

COBIS Student Competitions & Events

COBIS/King's Group Student Leadership Weekend, Madrid – 17-19 October 2014
COBIS is pleased to announce a new Student Leadership conference, hosted by King's College, Madrid. The Student Leadership Weekend will provide leadership training and life skills for senior pupils (aged 16 and over). Through interactive activities with trainers and prominent motivational speakers, the students will be presented with opportunities to develop self-awareness, interpersonal skills and life competencies. Places are limited. For more details and a booking form, visit the COBIS website.


COBIS Student Competitions

COBIS schools are advised that information about all COBIS 2014/15 student competitions will be emailed to schools at the end of September. This includes registration information for the 2015 COBIS Primary and Secondary Student Games and the 2015 COBIS World Debate Competition.


This information will be emailed to Heads at COBIS schools. However, if you would like to receive this information, please contact Natalie Friend by Friday 26 September 2014 to be added to the mailing list.

Professional Development

COBIS Conference for Teachers and Support Staff, Amsterdam – 20-21 October 2014
Leadership at All Levels – Unlocking Potential Throughout the School Community
Teachers, TAs, and other Support Staff from Primary and Secondary Schools are invited to register for this diverse conference. The programme includes sessions on:

  • EAL for Teachers New to International Schools
  • Effective Use of ICT in the Classroom (sessions for TAs, Primary, and Secondary)
  • Unlocking the Potential of Students with ADHD
  • Confident Classroom Leadership
  • Dyspraxia and Maths
  • Differentiation
  • Outdoor Learning: Ideas for Teaching Literacy Outside the Classroom
  • And much more

Visit the COBIS website for more information and a booking form.

COBIS Governors' Training Day – Amsterdam – 20 October 2014
Governors and Board Members from British International Schools are invited to book places for this new training event. The programme will include sessions on: Governance and Management: Recognising the Difference; Headteacher Performance Management; School Development Planning; and more. The delegate fee is €195 for COBIS Members, with a discounted rate of €150 for additional Governors from the same COBIS School. More information and a booking form can be found on the COBIS website.

COBIS Pupil-Centred Pastoral Care Conference, Bucharest – 7-8 November 2014
The British School of Bucharest will be hosting a two-day pastoral care conference led by two experienced practitioners: Jackie Cox and Paul James. Topics will include:

  • Building a Strong Pastoral Team
  • Safe Practice for All: Appropriate Behaviour and Avoiding Allegations
  • Promoting Well-Being Within Your School
  • Handling Disclosures
  • Dealing with Challenging Parents
  • Self Harming Behaviours
  • And more

For more information and a booking form, please visit the COBIS website.

COBIS Conference for Bursars, Business Managers and HR Staff – Geneva, Switzerland – 17-18 October 2014 - sponsored by Optimus Education
Bursars, Business Managers, and HR Staff are invited to book a place for this new COBIS CPD event, taking place at Geneva English School in October. This two-day training and networking event will include plenary sessions and practical workshops on a range of topics including:

  • Effective People Management
  • Empowering Change Through Strategic Planning
  • Creative Problem Solving
  • Strategic Planning & Management
  • Safer Recruitment
  • And more

The delegate fee is CHF 370 for COBIS Members and CHF 490 for non-COBIS Members. For further details and booking forms, please click here.  

International Programme For Middle Leaders – National College And COBIS – November 2014
Bookings are new being accepted for the ten-month International Programme for Middle Leaders, run in partnership between COBIS, the National College for Teaching & Leadership, and The British School in the Netherlands. The first face-to-face sessions will take place in The Hague in November 2014. Further details and booking forms can be found on the COBIS website.

COBIS Webinars

The COBIS webinar schedule for 2014/15 is now available on the COBIS website where you can book your free place. Recordings of all past webinars are available in the COBIS Member Area.

Forthcoming Webinars

E-safety for Students - Social Media and The Dangers
Tuesday 16 September 2014: 1pm (UK time)

Opportunities to Engage Your Students - COBIS Competitions & Events
Wednesday 24 September 2014 - 1pm (UK time)

Implementing the New Computing Curriculum at Key Stages 1 & 2 - In Association with Rising Stars
Wednesday 1 October 2014 - 1pm (UK time)

Participants Invited - EAL Webinar

COBIS is planning to run a webinar focusing on English as an Additional Language (EAL) in international schools and strategies for EAL provision. COBIS members are invited to participate in this webinar by sharing their experiences in 5 minute presentations. If you have experience of working with EAL pupils in your school which you would be willing to share with fellow COBIS members, please contact Natalie Friend.

News From COBIS Schools Around the World

British School In Tokyo Pupils Run The 360-Mile Nakasendo Way

New COBIS Board Member and British School in Tokyo Principal Brian Christian writes about his pupils' experience of running the Nakasendo Way, an ancient route from Kyoto to Tokyo through the Kiso Valley and over the Japanese Alps in his Principal's Blog.

"It all started with one of those what-if conversations. I’d just met Paul Christie of Walk Japan and we were throwing around some ideas about ways in which we could work together to do something special for BST’s 25th Anniversary; something that would involve students of different ages and that would open their eyes to the Japan beyond the urban sprawl of Tokyo. The 360-mile Nakasendo Way came up. We couldn’t possibly do it. Could we?

A few months later, after a great deal of preparation and planning (and one or two anxious moments) we were on our way: a motley crew of twenty BST students, teachers and parents, and our incredibly knowledgeable Walk Japan guides. Just like the Emperor’s elite messengers all those years ago, we were going to run the Nakasendo Way, an ekiden that would take us from Sanjo Ohashi in Kyoto all the way to Tokyo’s Nihonbashi in a little over five days".

Read their story here ...

COBIS Member Shares His Expertise With Colleagues In India

Stuart Higgins, Principal of Saint Michael’s College, Worcestershire, UK was invited to Delhi over the summer by the British Council. The British Council has introduced an English language quality standards programme for schools and other institutions teaching the language in India.

At the programme’s launch, Stuart delivered a talk on ‘The value of quality assurance, accreditation and professional association’ with particular reference to ISI inspections, COBIS and the Society of Heads. Sharing his experience as a principal and inspector of ISI, Stuart spoke about the inspection and accreditation processes in Britain and the enormous benefit to international schools of joining a professional association such as COBIS.

During his time in Delhi, Stuart also facilitated a number of workshops with Indian school principals. These included sessions on Leadership, 21st Century Skills – Preparing Students for Higher Education and Staff Motivation.

Supporting Member News

Welcome To New COBIS Supporting Members

COBIS would like to welcome the following new supporting members who have recently joined us:

All About Educational - Consultancy and Professional Development
Anglo Schools International Services (ASIS) Ltd - Consultancy and Professional Development
Examination Officers' Association - Consultancy and Professional Development
University of Plymouth - Universities

COBIS Supporting Membership Fee - Prompt Payment Required

Invoices for the 2014/15 COBIS Supporting Membership fee have now been sent to all members. Invoices are addressed to the named contact provided to COBIS by your organisation.

Payment is required by Friday 26 September 2014 in order to guarantee your entry in The Source 2015 so please ensure you pay promptly. If you require a copy of your invoice, please contact Sarah Wooldridge

The Source 2015 - Revised Entries Invited

Supporting Members are invited to review entries in The Source. Please click here to see your entry, or if you are a new member and your entry was not included in The Source 2014, your website member profile will be used. Please check your website profile page for details.

Any changes must be emailed to Natalie Friend by Friday 26 September 2014. Entries received after this date will not be changed.

COBIS World Student Magazine - Advertising Deadline Approaching

This new print and digital magazine is being published by John Catt Educational, in partnership with COBIS. Starting with the launch issue in November 2014, multiple print copies of COBIS World Student magazine will be distributed  to all COBIS schools, with additional print and digital versions being sent to students at 2,000 other international schools around the world.

The magazine has the aim of inspiring students in international schools around the world to make full use of their excellent education. The articles will be inspirational and aspirational in tone, on topics that will encourage students to consider their performance in forthcoming examinations, their further and higher educational options, their careers, their futures in general.

COBIS Supporting Members are eligible for a 15% discount on advertising rates and we encourage you to consider using the magazine to further strengthen your association with COBIS members. Editorial opportunities are also available for those who support World Student with paid advertising. The final booking deadline is 30 September 2014. Click here to view the media pack.

For more information on this exciting new publication, please contact Madeleine Anderson at the publishers, John Catt Educational. Advertising space is limited so please don't delay if you are interested.

COBIS Website Banner Adverts - Invitation To Advertise

COBIS supporting members are reminded that advertising opportunities on the COBIS website are available should you have products or services you wish to promote to our members. The COBIS website receives over 7,000 visitors each month so banner advertising is an excellent way for members to reach potential new customers. Please click here to download our advertising rates and contact Natalie Friend to book.

ExploreExport - 10-14 November 2014

COBIS has strong links with the UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) to the benefit of supporting members who promote products and services overseas. UKTI will be holding its 6th Export Week during the week of 10-14 November. Across the week, there will be a varied series of events all over the UK, aimed at businesses to either start their export journey or increase their international business. Previous Export Weeks have seen over 17,000 companies in the UK attend exporting focused events.

UKTI's flagship road show, ExploreExport, will be touring the UK at 11 venues across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Over 120 UKTI Trade Officers worldwide will be available for 1-2-1 meetings on their dedicated markets to help companies “explore” the possibilities of exporting to their countries. At a cost of £50 +VAT for up to 8 meetings, ExploreExport offers an excellent opportunity for supporting members to learn about new markets and grow sales of products and services internationally.

For more information, please visit the UKTI website.

TTS Time For 2s Conference - Delivering Quality Learning Opportunities For Two Year Olds

COBIS supporting members TTS are hosting a day of Early Years CPD on 1-2nd October 2014. COBIS schools are invited to attend the event, at the Hurlingham Club in Fulham, London, which will feature award winning, world class early years experts including Helen Moylett, Alice Sharp, June O'Sullivan and Di Chilvers.

To find out more and book your place, please click here

Professional Development Training Conference For Exam Office Staff

New COBIS supporting members the Examination Officers' Association are holding a conference on Thursday 2nd October 2014 at The Cumberland Hotel, London. COBIS member schools are invited to send staff with responsibility for examinations to this event which will include a range of keynote speeches and break-out sessions.

For more information and a booking form, please click here.

Advice To Schools On Induction Programmes For New Teachers

COBIS supporting members Teachers International Consultancy (TIC) have put together an article for COBIS members offering advice about induction programmes for new teachers. TIC have had several enquiries about this over the summer period. Click here to read the article.

Contact Us

If you have any comments or requests, please contact us. We'd love to hear from you.

Colin Bell, CEO -
Natalie Friend, Communications and Membership Officer -
Tamsin Gordon, COBIS International Marketing Intern -
Catriona Lawless, PA to Colin Bell -
Fiona Rogers, Senior Professional Development Officer -
Sarah Wooldridge, Finance Officer -

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Telephone: +44 208 240 4142
Address: COBIS, St Mary's University, Waldegrave Road, Strawberry Hill, Twickenham, TW1 4SX, UK           

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