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COBIS Accreditation: Set your school up for success

The COBIS Accreditation scheme is the primary route to COBIS membership.

School development lies at the heart of our non-judgemental approach, based on professional partnership and rigorous standards  

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A tailored approach

We recognise that every school is unique, operating in a particular context and at a different stage of development. We strive to understand each school and appreciate its special qualities and conditions. 


Globally recognised external validation

With school improvement, learning, safeguarding and well-being at the core, our programme supports schools with a British educational ethos worldwide in their development journey. As a COBIS school, you will become a member of a global-wide network of educators.  In addition to this, schools may be commended in areas where they have made important strides and, in some cases, may be awarded ‘Beacon Status’ for outstanding practice. Such awards are given to the school on the understanding that they will be open to sharing areas of excellent practice with other COBIS schools in our network.

Professional ongoing support

The process begins with honest self-evaluation and involves extensive dialogue with a COBIS-trained Lead Improvement Partner as we build up a professional relationship in advance of the visit with the aim of setting schools up for success.

Robust international standards

Gain valuable insight into your progress benchmarked against the best British and international practice, whilst working on your development priorities.


How does it work in practice?

You can choose the scheme you want to apply for - Compliance or Accreditation - and we're here to help you make this decision.

Watch the short video below to see how Accreditation works.

Hear from COBIS members that have gone through the process to learn what impact it had on their school

Marlborough College, Malaysia
COBIS Patron's Accredited Member

British International School of Timisoara, Romania
COBIS Patron's Accredited Member

Gems Wellington International School, DSB International School, India, and British International School of Stockholm

Brighton College Dubai


'If I was going to sum it up in one word, the impact of the scheme – it would be ‘sharpness’. Sharpness of practice.  It was useful as a CPD exercise to see where we could make improvements. What it also did was validate for my senior leadership team, the good practice that they were offering. That was really powerful.'

Brighton College Dubai

British International School of Ukraine


'It helped us to operate really effectively as a high-quality British school. For parents, it has given them the confidence in the school. They know that we now have recognition from an internationally respected organisation.' 

British International School of Ukraine

Repton Dubai


'I could say a lot of positive things about COBIS (Compliance). Section 1 - Safeguarding and Safer Recruitment is brilliant. That kitemark alone is worth the membership.'

Repton Dubai

REAL School Budapest


'We are grateful for all the value the Lead Improvement Partners have brought while working with us through the upgraded standards. Their professional yet highly personal approach brought the best out of our team.'

REAL School, Budapest

British International School of Ukraine

‘I think COBIS were the first accreditation body to really show the ambition and courage to help shape an accreditation model for Chinese private schools, and that’s needed in the market’ Wellington College China. 

Once you’ve applied, we will schedule a visit to your school at least 6 months in advance, and allocate a Lead Improvement Partner who will guide you through the process and assist you in preparing the evidence for a successful visit. 

Within six weeks following the visit, you will receive a written report which will have been comprehensively reviewed by the COBIS Accreditation Team and the COBIS Membership and Accreditation Committee of the COBIS Board, before final ratification by the COBIS Board. The report will contain overall Developmental Recommendations as well as other next steps in each Standard. 

The LIP will arrange one-year and three-year review meetings to discuss progress against the Developmental Recommendations and to discuss the school's engagement with COBIS and other members. The review documents are uploaded onto a dedicated Microsoft Teams site for each school. 

READ A step by step overview of the process 

Download the Standards


Case Studies



COBIS Beacon Schools

The COBIS network contains a vast amount of best practice, innovation and excellence. This quality is highlighted through the COBIS Compliance and Accreditation process, where schools can be awarded Beacon School status. Beacon Status schools have demonstrated excellence in specific aspects of, or the whole of a particular standard, and are committed to sharing their best practice with other schools around the world. We have compiled a list of our standards and the schools that have been awarded Beacon Status within each, as well as the date of their school visit. We encourage Members to reach out to these schools for advice and guidance. 

Find out more about Beacon Schools