COBIS 16: Connecting the world of international schools and global mobility

Relocate Global were delighted to attend and exhibit at the 35th Council of British International Schools annual conference where hundreds of international school leaders met to discuss excellence in the teaching of a British curriculum to a global community of students.

This year’s Council of British International Schools (COBIS) annual conference saw hundreds of international school leaders convene on London’s Greenwich peninsula at the Intercontinental, O2 to celebrate an amazing year of development and growth for the accreditation body and association.Colin Bell, COBIS CEO, welcomed delegates and congratulated them for “promoting and supporting all aspects relating to the export of world-class British education.”“For the benefit of students worldwide, including their families and the staff who expertly lead and develop our school communities, we continue to be ambitious, working to strengthen and deliver the best services around.”Relocate Global was a proud exhibitor at the event and showcased a wealth of education resources designed to help the global mobility profession gain a deeper understanding of the international education and schools community.And with more international schools than ever before engaged in social media conversations, our education twitter feed @RelocateEdu was buzzing over the course of the conference. We shared live pictures and real-time feedback from the event, engaging with international school leaders and connecting the world of education and global mobility.

Inspirational Stories

Following the conference theme ‘Authentic Leadership: Inspirational Stories for Learning in British Schools Overseas’, COBIS were true to their word as they welcomed Joe Simpson, Mountaineer and author of the bestselling story of survival, Touching the Void, to the stage to tell his powerful story of survival and determination.Dawn Akyurek, Headteacher, Kings College School, La Moraleja, Madrid and contributor to the COBIS 2016 conference, believes that harnessing the power and influence of stories and leadership narratives is vital for schools in order to establish credibility and build relationships and a, “sense of direction with those they seek to influence.”Relocate Global has spent years developing close relationships with schools and education partners to offer the global mobility and relocation community just that; a forum to share their stories.The narratives that we share on this site, in our magazine and newsletters and in our new annual Guide to International Education and Schools offer unique perspectives from schools and respected education commentators. These stories help everyone involved in an international relocation to understand the needs of individual families making some of the toughest educational and school choices.

Sharing best practice

Following Joe Simpson’s keynote address, CEO Colin Bell challenged school leaders to “be the best you can be,” and invited delegates to attend a selection of seminars and workshops led by specialists and education leaders to build on best practice in leading global schools delivering a British curriculum.In the current climate of global security scrutiny and safeguarding, Jane Larsson, Executive Director of the Council of International Schools (CIS), led a session on child protection and outlined the work of the International Task Force on Child Protection (ITFCP).  The ITFCP was tasked with determining what measures should be in place in schools to offer high quality child protection programmes and has set out a list of essential questions that should be considered by all international schools.

High Performance Learning

Professor Deborah Eyre, former Director of Education and Nord Anglia Education and author of the new book ‘High Performance Learning: How to become a World Class School,’ led an inspiring session on enabling children to perform at a higher level. “There is ‘room at the top’ if we systematically nurture more children to get there,” said Professor Eyre. “We need to move away from the idea that it’s all in the genes, with the right kind of support they can all get there.”Neil Strowger, CEO Bohunt Education Trust, spoke to packed audience about his experience of working with Chinese teachers for the BBC documentary Are Our Kids Tough Enough and his ultimate involvement with Bohunt’s new venture; a new school in China. The Bohunt Education Trust (BET) will open and run a new school in in Wenzhou, eastern China by 2018.

Higher Education

Today’s international school students looking to move into the world of Higher Education are competing against a higher than ever number top academic achievers - making it all the more important for students to be able to demonstrate their ability effectively. In the session led by Dukes Education Consultancy, panellists explored Oxbridge admissions changes, the impact of A-level reform and the specific considerations for International Baccalaureate students.David Gray, Principal of Erskine Stewart's Melville Schools in Edinburgh, encourages British students to look to the widening offer of English language courses in European Universities. He cited the fact that 120 UK students are currently studying medicine in Prague, a traditionally highly competitive area of study in the UK. 

Digital storytelling

International schools are becoming more switched on to the reality of digital marketing; this was clearly apparent in a well attended and lively seminar led by Max Eisl, Director of FinalSite, a company working with schools consulting on their digital communications strategy.A huge proportion of schools surveyed by FinalSite are actively engaged on social media with the majority relying on Facebook for their social communications with parents and prospective students.Mr Eisl astounded delegates at the session by explaining that schools have around seven seconds in order to convey the most important information about their school to prospective parents on their website, meaning that getting communication and digital marketing right has never more important.

Relocate Global: bringing schools and global mobility closer

“Meet your audience where they are,” Max Eisl advises schools.  Relocate Global’s audience of relocation and global mobility professionals are instrumental and deeply involved in a family’s decision about whether or not to attend a school in their new location. And our online and social media audience is growing by the day, connecting professionals from every side of the relocation picture.“For HR, global managers and employers, understanding education systems and the complexities of curricula, domestically or in regions around the world, can be bemusing,” says Relocate Global Managing Editor, Fiona Murchie in our new Guide to International Education and Schools.Attending events like the COBIS annual conference helps the Relocate Global team to stay one step ahead in helping global mobility professionals deal confidently with parents who need school places in their new location and who require support to enable them to make a success of an international assignment.The first edition of Re:locate Global’s new annual Guide to International Education & Schools is now available and is an invaluable resource for HR, global managers, employers, relocation professionals and relocating parents. Its unique editorial content, beautiful illustrations and high-quality production make it a first in the global mobility market. Content includes informative, engaging features and practical advice on choosing a school and curriculum choices in relocation destinations around the world, including the UK, the USA, Canada, Europe, China, Vietnam, India, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Middle East. Directories of schools, school associations and suppliers are also included.Relocate Global Internatiional Guide Order Now Button

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