Green Shoots International School Now a CIS Member
This is incredibly motivating news for our small and young Hoi An based international school. It is expected that in the next two years, we will move forward from becoming members, to being a fully accredited school, meeting the full range of criteria for high standard, international schools worldwide.
We are extremely proud of this achievement, which offers concrete evidence that Green Shoots meets high standards matching those of much larger international schools.
So, how is CIS different?
Cambridge, like the International Baccalaureate (IB), is a curriculum provider and its inspectors judge a school only on its ability to deliver their specific teaching and learning service. Because of its classroom focus, we sought membership of Cambridge first and received Cambridge School status in 2014.
Membership of COBIS was our next ambition because they assess members against UK government educational standards in additional areas, including recruitment, student welfare, governance, and values. We earned COBIS membership in 2015 and are one of only 2 schools to have done so in Vietnam.
The Council of International Schools (CIS) has both more rigorous and more global standards against which members are assessed, and since joining COBIS we have worked toward meeting the exacting standards required by CIS.
Background – What is CIS?
The Council of International Schools (CIS) is an organisation that promotes the very best practice in education. They work with schools and universities who want to improve and provide the highest quality of education possible.
CIS set international standards in eight areas where schools are evaluated. Not just on the quality of the (1.) curriculum provided (like Cambridge or IB), but also on the schools’:
2. Purpose & Direction; 3. Governance, Leadership & Ownership; 4. Teaching & Assessing for Learning; 5. Student Learning and Well-being; 6. Staffing; 7. Premises & Physical Accommodation; and 8. Community & Home Partnerships
Who else are members?
CIS has around 650 member schools in 100 countries around the world, making it a truly international collection of schools focused on global citizenship and a strong ethical foundation.
Two hundred of these institutions are in Asia, of which 17 are in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. Green Shoots becomes the 18th CIS member school in Vietnam and the only one in the central region.
Other CIS members in our region include the United World College of Southeast Asia in Singapore, the UN International School in Hanoi, Saigon South International School in HCMC, Seoul Foreign School, and the Nishimachi International School, Tokyo.
Becoming a member of CIS is a clear statement of intent on our behalf; to continue seeking school-wide improvement in a continuous cycle of improvement.
We are enormously grateful to all the students, staff and parents who met with Mr. McLay (the evaluator) during his visit to the school.
Mr. McLay, who is the head of accreditation services for CIS, concluded his 108-page report with a personal message:
Green Shoots International School has much to celebrate … since it was founded in 2012. The undoubted potential of the school is built upon its capacity to engage students in a supportive environment which sees governance, leadership, faculty and parents sharing a common vision for the future … (It) has appropriate plans, demonstrable intent and developing capacity, to enable it to prosper and meet its own expectations and those of its developing community.
The school has many areas of strength in particular as they relate to intercultural understanding, a deep commitment to student well-being and language support and development, alongside the continued evolution of facilities and resources in support of the well-established vision and values. (Its) own awareness of its focus for development, in conjunction with the issues highlighted in this report, should provide a clear, practical and prioritised roadmap … as it seeks to fulfill its stated ambition to become ‘Central Vietnam’s premier international school’.