February 2015 | COBIS Connect


COBIS Connect - February 2015

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In This Issue:

1.   Welcome from Colin Bell, COBIS CEO
2.   Dates For Your Diaries
School Member News
4.   New Member Schools
5.   COBIS Student Competitions & Events
6.   News from COBIS Schools Around the World

7.   Professional Development

8.   COBIS Webinars
9.   Supporting Member News
10. Contact Us

Welcome from Colin Bell, COBIS CEO

Dear Colleague,

It's been a busy weekend for the COBIS Board and Head Office team with not one but three events taking place. On Friday, meetings for all 5 COBIS Committees took place swiftly followed by another excellent COBIS Supporting Member Reception held at the Institute of Directors in London. Many thanks to all supporting members who attended this annual event.

On Saturday morning, the COBIS Board met for one of three annual meetings. This was followed by the first COBIS Leadership Seminar - Leading British Overseas Schools. This event was an information and networking opportunity for those interested in working in British international schools. COBIS is committed to supporting school members to recruit high quality staff at all levels and this event enabled those considering a move overseas to gather more information. After such a successful and well supported event, this is something we hope to repeat in the future.

As colleagues thoughts turn firmly to recruitment, I would like to remind you of the support which COBIS offers schools in this area. The COBIS team has represented members at University Recruitment Fairs both at St Mary's University and the University of Roehampton with much interest shown by teachers at both events. Members are also reminded that they can also access a 10% discount on advertising through COBIS supporting members the TES. Please ensure you mention COBIS when placing your booking. Colleagues can also advertise vacancies free of charge on the COBIS website. In all recruitment activities, members are reminded to include a safeguarding statement and ensure new appointments are DBS checked. COBIS offers this service to member and non-member schools through either the paper based system, or the new online system. Please contact the COBIS office for more information.

As ever, please let us know if there are any other ways you would like COBIS to support your school. COBIS is a consultative association and we always welcome the views of our members.

Kind Regards,
Colin Bell

Dates for Your Diaries

COBIS Conference for Teachers and Support Staff and Four-Day Middle Leaders’ Programme
Excellence and Happiness: Creating a Collaborative Learning Ethos for the Whole School
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 
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

Safer Recruitment for International Schools Course
9 May 2015, London

34th COBIS Annual Conference

Measuring Success: Wellbeing, Resilience, Education and Leadership in British Schools Overseas
9-11 May 2015
Park Plaza Hotel, London

Advanced Child Protection Course
12 May 2015, London 

IPML Facilitator Training
12-14 May 2015, London

School Member News

COBIS Member Schools - Name Changes 

Sir James Henderson School has now formally changed its name to The British School of Milan. The School's address and contact details remain the same as do its web and email addresses. Their new logo is displayed to the right.

COBIS Member Schools - Staff Changes 

Dubai College 

At the end of this academic year, after five successful years, Peter Hill will retire as Head of Dubai College. This position is now being advertised. Please click here for more information or visit the Dubai College website. The closing date for applications is 4 February 2015.

British International School Shanghai, Pudong 

The British International School Shanghai, Pudong has welcomed new principal, Lesley-Ann Wallace from 1st January 2015 (photo left).


Jerudong International School 

We are pleased to announce that Mr Barnaby Sandow, who was Acting Principal at Jerudong International School since August 2014 has now been appointed as Principal. 

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 - cpd@cobis.org.uk

COBIS Supporting Your School Recruitment at NQT Fairs

The COBIS team has been working hard to promote the benefits of working in a COBIS school at a range of teaching fairs at UK Universities. COBIS has been represented at several teaching fairs this term, including St Mary's Twickenham and the University of Roehampton.

There has been particular interest from students considering completing their NQT year overseas. Our photo (left) shows COBIS PA Catriona Lawless and COBIS International Marketing Intern Tamsin Gordon on the COBIS stand at the St Mary's University Teaching Fair. The photo (right) shows COBIS Senior Professional Development Officer, Fiona Rogers, representing COBIS at the Roehampton University Teaching Fair.


Publish Free Recruitment Ads on cobis.org.uk 

Publishing unlimited vacancies is a component of your COBIS annual membership subscription fee. The Recruitment page on our website is attracting increasing numbers of passive and active job seekers with COBIS schools reporting that they are attracting quality candidates via this channel.

Recruitment ads can be published via the Member Area – all you need is your unique school password. Simply log into your school account, click on your school name under 'My Groups' and select 'edit job vacancies’. For step by step instructions on publishing job ads on the COBIS website, please contact us.

As standard, please include a recruitment safeguarding statement in all ads. For example:
‘COBIS schools are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, young people and adults. All applicants to COBIS schools must be willing to undergo child protection screening, including checks with past employers and Disclosure and Barring Service checks and/or International Child Protection Certificate’.


‘This school is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. Employment is subject to a satisfactory enhanced disclosure from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)’.

2015 Membership Packs 

Membership packs for all schools were sent out last week. The packs includes your 2014/15 school certificate and various information about COBIS activities including conferences, student competitions and events and COBIS services. Also included is a new COBIS poster (right) which we encourage members to put on your school noticeboard. If you would like to print further copies for your school, please click here for a link to a printable copy.

New COBIS member schools will also receive a COBIS flag curtesy of colleagues at COBIS supporting member Schoolwear International Ltd. We encourage members to hang your flag on your school premises and tweet a photo using the hashtag #COBISflag. Let’s see your COBIS flags flying with pride all around the world! 

University Destinations for Graduates from COBIS Schools

Thank you to the 46 schools that responded to the COBIS survey of Exit Figures for secondary school graduates in 2014.

  • 92% of the 1820 school leavers went on to University (starting autumn 2014)
  • The majority of the remaining students are taking a gap year, with plans to start Higher Education in 2015.
  • 61% of the school leavers who started University in 2014 are enrolled at a Higher Education institute in the UK. This is an increase on the 2013 statistic of 55%.
  • The recent COBIS Annual Research Survey, in partnership with GL Education, has also shown that some of the top UK University destinations for graduates from COBIS Schools in 2014 were Bath Spa University, University College London, University of Edinburgh, King’s College London, and University of Cambridge.

COBIS Annual Research Survey

The reports detailing the findings of the COBIS Annual Research Survey, conducted in 2014, in partnership with GL Education, have now been published. To view a copy of the summary report, please click here. All responding schools should have received an email from GL Education giving them the opportunity to download a school-specific report including useful benchmarking information. 

Did you know?... (details from responding schools)

  • The oldest COBIS school was founded in 1926
  • 65% of responding COBIS schools teach cross-phase (both primary and secondary)
  • Some COBIS schools have as many as 91 pupil nationalities
  • 19% of COBIS schools offer boarding
  • 104 different curricular subjects are taught in COBIS schools
  • 140 different extra-curricular activities and sports are offered in COBIS schools
  • 50% of COBIS schools offer some form of financial support

New COBIS Member Schools

COBIS is delighted to welcome the following new schools into membership. All schools submitted detailed membership applications to the COBIS Membership Committee and were approved in accordance with the robust conditions required for COBIS schools of premium quality.

Schools approved for membership are required to complete a detailed application form and submit over 15 policies and documents related to quality assurance and development for their schools. In addition, one member of the senior leadership team at all new member schools is required to complete Child Protection and Safer Recruitment training.

Acorns and Oaks Academy, Nigeria 

COBIS is delighted to welcome Acorns and Oaks Academy in Port Harcourt, Nigeria into membership. The school opened with a crèche in September 2011 and added a primary section in September 2013. The school now has over 20 staff and increasing pupil numbers.

Lara Orike, Head Administrator at the school said upon accepting COBIS membership, “We appreciate the opportunity of being part of a growing network of British International schools and look forward to working together to ensure a safe and fun learning environment for our children.”

Budapest British International Academy, Hungary 

Budapest British International Academy in Hungary is the third COBIS Member school in Budapest and has been accepted for COBIS Candidate School membership. The school, which opened in October has 120 pupils and 20 staff.

John Hart, Head of the Budapest British International Academy, accepted COBIS Candidate School membership with the following words, “We look forward to developing our relationship with COBIS as our school grows.”

Eaton Square School, UK 

COBIS is delighted to welcome Eaton Square School in London, UK into membership. The school, which has been inspected by ISI and is part of the Minerva Education Group, has been awarded COBIS Member status following a successful application submitted to the COBIS Membership Committee.

The school is coeducational with pupils aged 3-13. Chief Executive of Minerva Education, Tommy MacDonald-Milner, said upon receiving news about the school’s successful membership application, “We look forward to all the benefits of joining COBIS.”

Leonardo Gifted School, Romania 

The Leonardo Gifted School will open in September 2015 in Bucharest, Romania. The school has been awarded COBIS Candidate School membership so the school can benefit from COBIS membership prior to opening.

Monica Gheorghiu, President of the school said upon accepting COBIS Candidate School membership, “Thank you for this opportunity to work together in the large family of quality British International Schools."

COBIS would like to wish everyone at the Leonardo Gifted School best wishes as the school prepares to open in September.

Kabitaka School, Zambia

Kabitaka School in Solwezi, Zambia, is part of the Educore group of schools and has recently been approved as a COBIS Member. The school has 343 pupils and over 30 staff and opened in 2013.

Head Mthulisi Matshakaile said upon accepting COBIS membership, “I look forward to a great relationship with your esteemed organisation.”

Tenby Group Schools 

COBIS is delighted to welcome 5 schools from the Tenby Group into membership. Tenby Schools Setia Eco ParkIpohPenangMiri and Setia Eco Gardens are all located in Malaysia and together, educate over 3,000 pupils.

Gregory Mowday, Campus Principal at Tenby School Penang said upon accepting membership on behalf of his school, “We, as a school community, are very proud to be included as a member of an international organisation which embodies the qualities and standards to which we continually aspire”.

The British School Jakarta 

The COBIS Membership Committee has recently approved an application from The British School Jakarta for COBIS Member status. The school was founded in 1973 and is already a member of HMC, FOBISIA and CIS.

Simon Dennis, Head at The British School Jakarta was delighted to accept membership on behalf of the school.

The British School of Marbella, Spain 

The British School of Marbella is the latest school in Spain to be approved for COBIS membership. The school educates over 100 children aged 2 to 11 and is part of The British Schools Foundation (BSF) which has 10 schools in 9 countries, many of which are COBIS members.

Headmistress Sian Kirkham, who has worked in BSF schools in China and Russia prior to Spain, was delighted to accept COBIS membership.

COBIS Student Competitions and Events

Good luck to all schools taking part in all of our competitions and events. To get your school involved, go to www.cobis.org.uk/COBIS_Student_Events

COBIS Poetry Competition 

This year's theme is a celebration of humour - "The Funny Side of Life". All poems must be less than 40 lines and submitted in English by a member of school staff by 2 March 2015.

There are three age categories for the competition:

  • Category A: 10 years and under
  • Category B: 11 - 14 years
  • Category C: 15 - 19 years

The winner of each category will have their poem published by John Catt Educational in COBIS World Student magazine summer edition. COBIS World Student is distributed to more than 2,000 schools around the world.

For more information, click here.

COBIS Art Competition 

The COBIS art competition is new for the 2014/2015 academic year and is open to all students from EYFS to Key Stage 3. Schools can submit up to three entries in each Key Stage. Each category will have a 1st, 2nd and 3rd place award with fantastic prizes for both students and schools being provided by Serif Europe and Eric Parry Architects.

The theme is “I live in this beautiful place…” To enter, teachers should submit a photograph of the student's artwork with their name, age and school name by e-mail to Catriona Lawless on pa@cobis.org.uk before 20 April 2015. For more information, click here.

COBIS Student World Debate Competition 

Good luck to all the schools travelling to the British School of Bucharest this weekend for the COBIS Student World Debate Competition. We wish you the best and are looking forward to seeing some spirited debates! Thank you to the team at British School of Bucharest for the meticulous planning that has gone into hosting this event.

To keep up-to-date with the competition this weekend, follow @CobisDirector on Twitter.

News From COBIS Schools Around the World

International School of Bucharest student achieves highest mark in the world 

International School of Bucharest are extremely proud of  Year 12 student, Miss Aruna Popescu, who has achieved the highest mark in the world in Sociology from Cambridge International Examinations. Aruna attained this remarkable result in the International General Certificate of Education (IGCSE). The photo (right) shows Mr Sinan Kosak, ISB Secondary School Principal, proudly handing the Outstanding Cambridge Learner Award, Top in the World to Aruna.

The IGCSE examinations from Cambridge University, which take place in May/June every year, are the gold standard in academic qualifications for students aged 14 – 16 years old. The International school of Bucharest offer over 19 IGCSE’s to their students who regularly obtain grades equal to or in excess of the students in the UK.

Aruna achieved 7 A* and 1 A grade in the IGCSE examinations. She is currently studying Sociology, Economics, History and Spanish in her AS-levels and she is hoping to read Law at one of the most prestigious universities in the UK. 

To read the full press report click here

COBIS Games Logo Announced 

In the autumn of 2014 St Catherine's British School ran a "Design a Logo/Mascot" competition as part of the build up to the COBIS Games to be held in Athens in May 2015. Following assemblies to Key Stages One, Two and Three, the Leadership Team was inundated by a huge array of designs for both a logo and a mascot. Special commendation certificates were awarded to 73 pupils across the key stages before a short list of winners and runners-ups were announced just before Christmas. The final digitalised logo is based on the winning entry of Isobel Vassilopoulou from Year 9 - the judges really liked the sense of movement incorporated within the idea of the Greek Flag running across the Union Jack (photo: right). The final digitalised mascot has been put together from the entries of Angela Frangos from Year 8 and Marina Ghikas from Year 5. The owl is the symbol of the goddess Athena and, of course, the modern city of Athens as well. The judges loved the way the designers used the big owl eyes to reflect the flags of Greece and the United Kingdom. The school is hoping that it can attract a company to make up the mascot itself in soft toy format. Keep your fingers crossed!

The ARACIP Inspection Transylvania College

During the week of  8 - 12 December 2014, Transylvania College was visited by a team of inspectors from ARACIP - a public institution of national interest  under the Ministry of Education and Research, with the purpose of assessing the quality of education offered by our school. As a result of the inspection, they received the rating EXCELLENT in 7 different fields of activity, a few of the main ones having been those connected to the academic activity of the school.

This rating means that not only we fulfill the required criteria, but we exceed them, by adding  important elements of innovation to it. All the other assessed chapters have been rated VERY GOOD, meaning that we have reached up to all required standards.

There were no recommendations for improvement, nor any plans for remedial actions!

King's College Primary Cup

This May the shores of the Mediterranean will be echoing to the sound of friendly competition! Athletes taking part in the Official COBIS Games in Athens will be joined by competitors in Spain who will be hoping to lift the King's College Primary Cup. The Alicante event is being organised by King’s College, Alicante with the King’s College primary schools in Alicante, Murcia and Soto, Madrid being joined by Newton College, Alicante, St. George’s School, Luxembourg and the British Embassy School, Ankara, Turkey.

The competition will be held over two days and will consist of football and athletics events. The schools taking part are looking forward to the opportunity to take part in some top class sport and to meet and make new friends. King’s are very grateful to COBIS for their ongoing support and encouragement for this sporting event

The photo (above right) shows King's College coaches spoiled for choice in selecting the squad!

King's Group Marketing Assistant 
Contract: 6 months
Start date: ASAP 
Principal location of work: Pio XII 92, Madrid, Spain

King's Group is looking for someone with a strong interest in working in Marketing/Communications to contribute to the day to day work of developing the Group's marketing communications. Applicants who are fast learners, bilingual in Spanish and English and have a "can do" attitude are invited to apply.

To view the full job description please click here.

Former Head Teacher of St George's International School, Luxembourg Awarded MBE
Luxembourg, January 2015

Mrs Heather Duxbury, former Head Teacher of St George's International School, Luxembourg, has been made a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE).

The honour, which is bestowed "for a significant achievement or outstanding service to the community", was granted for her work and community service in Education in Luxembourg. She was included in the Foreign Secretary's overseas list of New Year Honours for 2015 which was published on the 31st of December, 2014.

Mrs Duxbury was Primary Head Teacher of St George's International School, Luxembourg from 2001 until August 2014 when she retired. During this time the School grew from 85 students to approximately 650 students and expanded from basic facilities to the current modern campus in Luxembourg-Hamm. In addition to her efforts in advancing the School, she also initiated a number of charity projects as well as introducing curriculum changes and improvements to the academic offering for students. She was responsible for the establishment of the Secondary school and the first IGCSE exams; the Secondary school now offers education to over 200 students as well as qualifications at IGCSE and A-Level.

For more information please click here.

Professional Development

Recent CPD Events

COBIS Seminar: Leading British Overseas Schools 

On Saturday 31 January, COBIS ran a successful seminar in London on Leading British Overseas Schools, sponsored by Anthony Millard Consulting and Eteach International. Supporting our member schools with succession planning, the seminar was for Senior Managers from schools in the UK, and abroad, who wanted to learn more about the opportunity for Senior Leadership roles in the international school sector. Speakers at the seminar included Headteachers from a number of high quality international schools. The seminar was attended by more than 40 delegates. We are grateful to our sponsors and speakers for making this new COBIS event a success.

Forthcoming Conferences

COBIS Conference for Teachers and Support Staff: Athens, Greece - 2-3 March 2015 **LAST CHANCE TO BOOK - Book Your Place Now** 
Excellence and Happiness: Creating a Collaborative Learning Ethos for the Whole School
St Catherine's British School, Athens

Teachers and TAs from Primary and Secondary Schools are invited to register for this COBIS Conference. In addition to high-profile speakers, the exciting programme will also include workshops on a range of topics including: 

  • Coaching to improve performance
  • Enabling environments in the EYFS
  • Gifted education strategies for 21st century students
  • Growth mindsets
  • Philosophy for children
  • The role of the teaching assistant
  • Integrating new technology in schools
  • Leading a subject area
  • Developing thinking skills
  • Story telling - Story mapping
  • And more - click here to download a draft programme and workshop descriptions

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

COBIS Conference for Teachers: Beijing, China - 20-21 March 2015 **LAST CHANCE TO BOOK - Book Your Place Now**
Future Learners - The Challenges of a New Environment
The British School of Beijing, Shunyi

A dynamic programme has been brought together for this conference for Primary and Secondary Teachers including sessions on: 

  • Flipping Learning
  • The Teenage Brain
  • Active Engagement: Combining fun learning activities with new technology
  • Writing in the 21st Century: Supporting early learners
  • Personalised Learning Networks
  • Making Maths Fun
  • Pastoral Care in the 21st Century
  • Obtaining and Sustaining the Brain's Attentive Focus
  • And more - click here to download a draft programme

There will also be opportunities for optional cultural visits (Great Wall, Forbidden City, etc.) for participants on Sunday 22 March.

For more information and a booking form, please click here.
A four-day programme for Middle Leaders will run alongside the conference, 19-22 March. Click here for more information.

Four-day Middle Leaders’ Course
Leading Learning from the Middle 
28 February-3 March 2015 – St Catherine's British School, Athens, Greece
19-22 March 2015 – British School of Beijing, China

COBIS, working in partnership with Karen Ardley Associates, St Catherine’s British School in Athens, and the British School of Beijing, will be running two four-day courses for aspiring or current middle leaders in Primary or Secondary schools.

28 February-3 March 2015 – St Catherine’s British School, Athens **Fully Booked**
19-22 March 2015 – The British School of Beijing (click here for more details and booking forms)

Course objectives:

  • To deepen middle managers’ understanding of themselves and their leadership behaviours
  • To extend middle managers’ knowledge and understanding about leadership
  • To develop leadership skills

COBIS Conference for Teachers, Leaders and Support Staff: Lagos, Nigeria - 16-17 April 2015
Students Taking Ownership of Their Learning
Grange School, Lagos

This conference for Teachers, TAs, Support Staff, Middle and Senior Leaders, and Proprietors of British International Schools will include sessions on:

  • Using ICT to Enhance, Extend and Support Learning
  • British International Schools: The African Perspective - Challenges, Threats, Opportunities
  • Special Educational Needs
  • New Models of Educational Delivery: Opportunities and Challenges
  • And more

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

2nd COBIS Conference for Marketing, Development and Admissions Staff: Dubai, UAE - 23-24 April 2015
**BOOKING NOW OPEN - Book Your Place Now**
Stakeholder Engagement: The Past, The Present and The Prospective
Dubai College, UAE

Booking is now open for the 2nd COBIS Conference for Marketing, Development and Admissions Staff. The programme will cover a range of topics including:

  • Marketing & Admissions for British International Schools
  • Alumni Engagement
  • Establishing a Development Office
  • The Customer Journey
  • Media Relations for Schools
  • Parent Engagement
  • Social Media and Technology
  • And more

Click here to view a draft programme.
For more information and a booking form, please click here

34th COBIS Annual Conference, 9-11 May 2015, London
Measuring Success: Wellbeing, Resilience, Education and Leadership in British Schools Overseas
Sponsored by TES Global

Heads, Governors, Deputy Heads and other Senior Managers are invited to register for the 34th COBIS Annual Conference (Park Plaza Hotel, Victoria, London. Keynote speakers will include:

  • Professor Guy Claxton – World renowned authority on the development of intellectual character; author; Emeritus Professor of the Learning Sciences at University of Winchester; Visiting Professor of Education at King’s College London
  • Baroness Sue Campbell CBE – Chair of Youth Sport Trust; former Chief Executive of the National Coaching Founding and former Chair of UK Sport; member of the House of Lords
  • And more.

Click here to download a copy of the draft programme. Seminars and workshops will include:

  • Developing resilience in your teaching workforce
  • Mindfulness and wellbeing in schools
  • Measuring the impact of leadership
  • Resilient classroom cultures
  • And much more.

Click here to view a copy of the conference flyer.
For more information about the conference, and booking forms, please click here. 
See below for more information about additional courses running alongside the conference.

Annual Conference Shoulder Courses
Annual Conference delegates may be interested in these other training opportunities, running alongside the Annual Conference.

Pre-Conference Seminar and Afternoon Tea, 9 May 2015, 2:45-3:45, London
Levels...Baseline...National Tests...What's happening with assessment policy back in the UK?

A unique opportunity for COBIS schools to hear the latest from the UK regarding the recent changes in education policy.  Colin Watson (Deputy Director,  Assessment Policy & Development) from the Department of Education) will give an overview of what’s been happening back in the UK to include the new Baseline assessment, removal  of National Curriculum Levels and an update on schools performance measures.  Following the session there will be an opportunity for networking and afternoon tea will be provided courtesy of GL Education. For more information and a booking form, please click here.

Safer Recruitment for International Schools, 9 May 2015, London

Before the official start of the Annual Conference, COBIS will be offering delegates the opportunity to attend a course on Safer Recruitment for International Schools, delivered by Barabarani Education Services. For more information and a booking form, please click here.

Advanced Child Protection Course, 12 May 2015, London

On the Tuesday following the Annual Conference, COBIS will be running an Advanced Child Protection Course, delivered by Kidscape. For more information and a booking form, please click here.

IPML Facilitator Training **Limited Places Remaining**
12-14 May 2015, London 

COBIS has a formal partnership arrangement with the National College for Teaching and Leadership in the UK for the delivery of the International Programme for Middle Leaders (IPML). The IPML is running, through COBIS, in The Netherlands and Spain this year, with participants from schools in Brazil, Italy, Turkey, Kazakhstan, Luxembourg, Romania, Spain and The Netherlands. COBIS is now in a position to train new facilitators who will then be able to deliver this programme in their own schools. An IPML Facilitator Training Course will run in London from 12-14 May 2015, immediately following the Annual Conference. Places on this course are very limited. For more information, or to book a place, please click here.

Other Association Events

The 5th Gulf Education Conference 
Abu Dhabi, UAE
17-19 March 2015

GESS are delighted to be working towards the 5th year of Gulf Education, and even more so to announce that this year's event will be held in UAE, following huge demand. GESS are anticipating a high attendance from Ministers of Education from a number of countries in the region, alongside education pioneers, leaders and practitioners from all over the globe. As in previous years, Gulf Education will showcase developments in education, highlighting the great innovations taking place in the world of academia. 

COBIS Member rates: GESS are offering COBIS members a 10% discount on this event, and if the members would like to bring a partner or colleague, they can receive one free gala dinner, representing a saving of £150.   

For more information please visit the GESS website.

ISBA host ICT Conference 
11 February 2015

Experts from Google and Microsoft as well as an Apple solutions expert will be joining the ISBA at its next ICT conference on 11th February 2015 for heads, directors of eLearning, senior ICT professionals, governors and bursars. The event, at BMA House in London, will discuss the current challenges faced by schools in implementing their ICT strategies as well as trends in new technology for the classroom of tomorrow.  The comprehensive one-day course will also include a wide selection of breakout sessions dedicated to a range of ICT issues in schools.

For more information click here.

COBIS Webinars 

The COBIS webinar schedule for spring 2015 has recently been announced. Webinars include LinkedIn for Beginners in association with COBIS supporting member Interactive Schools, and Assessing Pupils’ Progress in a World Without Levels in association with COBIS supporting member Rising Stars. To book your free place, please visit our website.

Past webinar recordings are available in the COBIS Member Area. All webinars are free of charge for COBIS members.

Supporting Member News

Welcome To New COBIS Supporting Members
COBIS would like to welcome the following new supporting members who have recently joined us: 

Wild Search - Recruitment
TLTP Teach Global - Recruitment 
The Medic Portal - Student Development
University of Worcester - Consultancy and Professional Development

Firefly Learning Conference Asia 
When: 20th March 9:00 - 17:00 followed by drinks
Where: Bangkok Patana School, Bangkok, Thailand
Free to attend

Join Firefly for a day that will bring together a range of inspirational speakers from the education sector to discuss how learning technology can be used to support learning, teaching and assessment, with a focus on Asian international schools.

Firefly are very excited to present Victoria Tinio, Executive Director, Foundation for Information Technology Education and Development, as our keynote speaker. Rob Eastment, former Deputy Head Duke of Kent School, will give a talk on Growth Mindset. Additionally, the day will feature several international schools demonstrating their own use of learning technology.

The conference is a free event open for anyone with an interest in education and also a great opportunity to meet and network with colleagues from other schools. Be sure not to miss out by registering today. If you want to get a feel for Firefly events, have a look at the UK Firefly Learning Conference 2014.

For more information click here, Firefly looks forward to seeing you there. Please contact marketing@fireflylearning.com with any questions.

Kirkland Rowell Surveys Benchmarking Initiative: 

In partnership with COBIS, GL Education, publishers of the Kirkland Rowell Surveys, are delighted to offer you the opportunity to participate in a new benchmarking initiative. This initiative will support your school’s engagement with stakeholders and ongoing self-assessment, as well as enabling you to measure your school against the COBIS membership and other international schools.

Along with the new COBIS Annual Research Survey, which was recently completed by many COBIS schools, this initiative will also help COBIS to deliver on a key objectives for 2014-15, which is to better understand the characteristics of the COBIS membership in order to develop member services and support lobbying efforts.

To achieve a valid COBIS benchmark requires participation by a sufficient number and range of our members. To encourage as wide a range of members as possible to participate, COBIS has negotiated an extremely attractive price for COBIS members of £500 for Primary or Secondary schools and £700 for All Through schools. This offer is for the full digital survey service provided by Kirkland Rowell incorporating survey design, audience communication, data analysis and the production of detailed management reports for all three key audiences: parents, students and staff. The offer is available for the first 50 schools to sign up for the programme.

To confirm your participation in the initiative please contact Andrew Sleath at GL Education andrew.sleath@gl-education.com - or call him on +44 20 8996 3353. For more information visit the website.

TES 10% Discount Offer: 

Following negation on behalf of COBIS school members, the TES has agreed to offer a 10% discount to COBIS member schools on all TES recruitment advertising. To access this discount, please mention the COBIS 10% discount offer when placing your booking.

COBIS Supporting Member Reception

Representatives from over 40 COBIS supporting member organisations joined us for a networking Reception at the Institute of Directors on Friday 30 January 2015. This annual event is a great opportunity for supporting members old and new to meet the COBIS Head Office team and the COBIS Board as well as other COBIS supporting members. An excellent evening was enjoyed by all.

Thank you to all supporting members who joined us for our Annual Reception and we look forward to welcoming you again next year.

2014 State of International Schools Admission – Survey Research Project

COBIS Schools are invited to participate in a new research project, delivered by SSATB in partnership with ISC Research and ECIS. The objectives of the survey are to define the roles played by admission officers within and across international schools; gain a better understanding of the admission process and operation within and across international schools; explore the cost of tuition and the degree of financial aid offered at international schools; examine the challenges international schools face in terms of recruitment and selection of students; review key issues relating to governance and decision making; and assess salary and budgeting practices. Survey responses will be collected this term from schools worldwide.  

BETT Winners

COBIS would like to congratulate COBIS supporting members who won prestigious BETT awards during the BETT show 2015. The BETT show received delegates from an increasing number of countries this year with members reporting excellent interest from COBIS member schools. Congratulations to all members who were nominated for awards and to the winners who are listed below:

Primary Digital Content 


The photo shows winners Rising Stars receiving their award alongside author Miles Berry. Miles delivered an excellent webinar on primary coding last year which is still available in the COBIS website Member Area for members to view.

Secondary Digital Content

  • Winner: Soundbitelearning UK Ltd – GCSEPod


Best Whole Course Curriculum Content


ICT Tools for Teaching and Learning – Web Based

  • CEM - PIPS Baseline

ICT Tools for Teaching and Learning – Non Web Based

Digital Collections and Resource Banks

ICT Special Educational Needs Solutions

ICT Leadership and Management Solutions

ICT Company of the Year - Between £1m and £10m turnover

ICT Company of the Year - Between £1m and £10m turnover

ICT Exporter of the Year

Free Digital Content

  • Rising Stars UK Ltd - Switched On Computing - Take Your First Easy Steps with Microsoft
  • Tigtag and Imperial College London - Reach Out CPD

International Digital Resource


Educational Apps

BETT Exhibition Stand of the Year

Contact Us

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

Colin Bell, CEO - ceo@cobis.org.uk
Natalie Friend, Communications and Membership Officer - members@cobis.org.uk
Tamsin Gordon, COBIS International Marketing Intern - intern@cobis.org.uk
Catriona Lawless, PA to Colin Bell - pa@cobis.org.uk
Fiona Rogers, Senior Professional Development Officer - cpd@cobis.org.uk
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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