THE FOBISIAN June 2020 Term 3 Issue 33

Page 1

Federation of British International Schools in Asia eMagazine

June 2020: Term 3, Issue 33

Board Members Anthony Rowlands

Nick Magnus

Principal British International School, HCMC

Headmaster Dulwich College (Singapore)

Graeme Salt

Dinah Hawtree

Head of College Dulwich College Seoul

Principal Garden International School Rayong

Martin Towse

Roger Schultz

Principal St. Christopher's International Primary School, Penang

Head of School The Alice Smith School Kuala Lumpur


Heads' Support

Vice Chair & Treasurer


Secretary & Membership


Vanita Uppal

Chris Short

Director The British School New Delhi

Principal Dover Court International School Singapore

Margaret Rafee

Matt Mills

Principal Sri KDU International School

Head of School Bangkok Patana School


Student Events

HQ Liaison


Headquarters John Gwyn Jones MBE

Siobhan Bland

Daphne Wong

Hannah Marshall

Li-May Lim

Robyn Tait

Executive Office Manager & PA to the CEO

Chief Executive Officer

CPD Executive

Events Executive

Communications Executive

Events Executive

Jitsaman Chan Accounts Executive

THAILAND Headquarters 39/4 Todsamon Clubhouse Building, Mezzanine Floor Soi LaSalle 39/1, Sukhumvit 105, Bangna, Bangkok 10260 THAILAND

SINGAPORE SOCIETY 95 Portsdown Road, 139299, SINGAPORE










From Our Chair


From Our Chief


Calendar of Events 2020-21


Covid-19 Impact Report


Meet our Members




Student Events

Senior Drama Festival Short Story Competition Under 15s Pink Group Games Photo Album


How Harrow & the Royal Life Saving Society Promote Water Safety PE & Sport: The Next New Normal Why do British Teachers Work Overseas An Interview with Ross McGill

FOBISIA Webinar Series

Sports Club Social Series CPD Series


Word quiz & factoid

Universally Challenged

44 Keynotes 46

Member Schools


Affiliate Members

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33

30 3

from our


Welcome to this Term 3 issue of THE FOBISIAN. When I look back to my welcome note from this time last year, I was introducing myself as the new Chair of FOBISIA. A year into my Chairmanship and it feels like a lot has changed since then. In my 28 years with the Federation, I have not experienced anything quite like what we've all been through over the last six months. COVID-19 has impacted all of us on many levels as school leaders, families and school communities, as well as financially, emotionally and physically. I am very much looking forward to getting back to some kind of new normal, wherever that might look like. I am very impressed with how our school communities have rallied together to support one another during this unprecedented crisis. It has become very evident to me that it is at times like these we have the chance to stop and reflect on how important our Federation is to us. FOBISIA has enabled us all to connect across the region to share experiences, good practice and to coordinate on crisis management. Despite the global pandemic we have managed to welcome six new schools to the Federation since March, bringing us to 76 Member Schools, and 81 Affiliate Members have renewed again this year. Although our Calendar of Events has been a bit slim on the ground since January, we have managed to hold one U13s Games event and a few online events, including the COVID-19 Silver Linings Creative Writing Competition which wraps up in June. I would like to thank everyone for their efforts to secure refunds following the many cancelled events due to COVID-19, and for enthusiastically stepping up and volunteering to host next year. FOBISIA HQ has been an important source of support, information and collaboration over these last months. I would like to commend our CEO, John Gwyn Jones MBE and the HQ team for their hard work in supporting us through these unprecedented times. He and his team have worked tirelessly to keep us informed on the latest updates and connect us with the people and information to help us move forward and make decisions. John's track record and experience with the Federation has put FOBISIA in a very good position and he has achieved a lot in his first year as CEO, despite having a global pandemic thrown in the mix. We have a Board Meeting coming up in June, and there will be much to update you on following this meeting leading up to next academic year. Let's hope that there will be many more opportunities for face to face networking and collaboration. I am very much looking forward to welcoming everyone back after the summer break; stay safe and well.

Best wishes, Anthony Rowlands FOBISIA Chair - March 2019 to present Principal, British International School Ho Chi Minh City


from our


This will be my final contribution to THE FOBISIAN in my first year as CEO of FOBISIA. It coincides with probably what I can describe as the strangest end of an academic year that I have ever experienced in my 45 years as a teacher. Many of our schools remain closed and I feel for those students and staff that are leaving these schools, not having had the opportunity to not only celebrate their achievements with their peers and colleagues, but also being unable to bid farewell to their communities. So sad. Then there are those schools that have celebrated their re-opening, and although working under very different circumstances, are delighted to be back together in their school, albeit for maybe a short period of time before they close again for the long end of year vacation. Who would have ever predicted an end of a school year without the traditional examinations. It remains to be seen whether this may now lead to a new way of assessing and awarding our students their certifications and qualifications by recognising their talents through a more effective and recognised teacher assessment route with a built in external validation? Of course, we have all come to terms with the challenges that we have had to adjust to over the past 4+ months (seems like an eternity) and I applaud and recognise the outstanding qualities that have come to the fore – your ability to adapt; your resilience in ensuring that the disruption is kept to a minimum, your skills of collaboration not only within your own schools, but throughout the wider FOBISIA and global communities; your flexibility and adaptability in taking on a new way of working and your courage in living in an environment where fear and uncertainty surrounds us on a daily basis. Looking in from the outside, we have seen excellence in such practices amongst all our Member Schools and we cannot praise you enough for your hard work in not allowing a global pandemic defeat us. Although we are encouraged in seeing countries gradually easing restrictions, with environments slowly attempting to return to some form of normality, we remain cautious. Yet on the plus side, we have now built up resources and a way of working that will prepare us for any potential setback. This coming week, we will circulate our survey on the impact of Covid-19 on the Federation which provides an excellent and comprehensive wealth of information and feedback on how well our schools have managed the recent challenges. At HQ, we have probably been far busier than usual in working with our membership in supporting you all in whatever way we can. We have had numerous meetings with all our committees and regional teams – Heads of PE; CPD; Music; Drama; Safeguarding – and they have been so enthusiastic in supporting us in planning for the 2020-21 academic year. We are gradually becoming experts in managing webinars, having had a series of these that have focused on Teaching Assistants, Re-opening of Schools, along with having sports celebrities to cheer up our communities with light hearted conversations and Q+As. I would like to thank our team at HQ for their commitment in managing these webinars. We have many more webinars planned on a range of topics that will appeal to to the breadth and depth of our school communities. We will shortly update you on our Annual Leadership Conference, which is due to take place in Bangkok from 6 to 8 November 2020, as to whether or not this will proceed or be postponed or cancelled. I am delighted that we have been successful in securing the refunds the Under 13s and Primary Games payments to those schools who had paid in advance. FOBISIA HQ is looking to manage the payments for these events in the next academic year so that we have a bit more control in not only ensuring payments are made on time, but to also protecting our schools in the event of cancellation (as best we can). THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


Sadly we are saying “farewell” to some of our colleagues at HQ. Daphne Wong, our CPD Executive, will not be returning for the 2020 academic year. Daphne has been our CPD person for six years and will be greatly missed by ourselves as well as our CPD Leaders. She has been outstanding in the development of the FOBISIA CPD portfoli and on behalf of all of us, I would like to recognise her contribution and wish her well for the future. Both Hannah Marshall and Robyn Tait are also leaving us (Sports and Events) as they depart for Beijing and Ho Chi Minh city respectively. It has been a pleasure working with both of them. Hannah has contributed so much especially with our Heads of PE Committee. She has also worked tirelessly in pursuing SCA on the refund of deposits. Robyn, who joined us in February, has established excellent links with our Music, Drama and Safeguarding Committees, and I wish to thank her for managing our Calendar of Events for the next academice year. I would like to wish them both well as they re-locate to their new environments. So big shoes to fill. This has always been a challenge for FOBISIA HQ in Bangkok in appointing suitable staff on a reasonably long term basis. I am confident we will find qualified and experienced replacements and will introduce them to you when we return in the new academic year. We are fortunate in having Siobhan (Executive Office Manager), Li-May (Communication Executive) and Pheung (Accounts Executive) provide stability and continuity and I can only praise all three of them for their tremendous support and commitment to the work we do at HQ. In recent months, I have been approached by various UK Government departments. This clearly shows a greater acknowledgement in the value and contribution FOBISIA and our membership makes in promoting the best of British education overseas. The UK's Department for Education (DfE) has invited FOBISIA to be part of working groups in sharing both standards that we deliver in our schools as well as explore teaching qualifications and pathways that will give a certain cohort of our staff recognition in their ambition to develop themselves further(through ITT, iPGCE, QTS, AO and possibly the introduction of iQTS). The Department for International Trade (DfIT) in the UK has also recognising the growth of British Education in Asia and is keen to work and support us in moving forward. It has been an absolute pleasure working with our colleagues across our communities around the world – BSME, COBIS, NABSS, LAHC and AoBSO – and I see much more potential in developing stronger links with such groups in the future. Finally, we are predicting continued growth in our Federation going forward. We already have two school visits planned in October (British School Tokyo and Shrewsbury International School Hong Kong) along with strong interest and enquiries from an additional eight premier British schools in various countries around Asia. Our Affiliate Membership is also increasing as we are now up to 85 members, with enquiries from an additional 20+ companies. We are keen to support our Affiliates more in providing greater value for being members of FOBISIA. We are also planning to promote our Individual Membership category (currently stands at zero!). This is for ex-FOBISIA Heads that may have retired, moved on or remain working in Asia and wish to continue to be associated with the Federation. It is recognised that such individuals have a great deal to contribute from their previous experience and knowledge of how the Federation has developed over the years. In closing, I would like to thank everyone that has supported me in my first year as CEO of FOBISIA. So much has happened this year – there have been many high and lows, yet I remain very motivated in developing the role of CEO to its full potential and justify the investment FOBISIA has made in creating such a position. I have always been very passionate about what FOBISIA is all about and I am ambitious in working with you all in mapping out a strategic plan that will secure a dynamic, successful and sustainable future that will position FOBISIA as one of the premier and highly recognised regional British international school organisations.

Best wishes, John Gwyn Jones MBE FOBISIA CEO 6

The FOBISIA Covid-19 Silver Linings Creative Writing Competition is now closed and the winning entries for each category will be announced in the next school year!

There were over 500 entries for this competition! A big THANK YOU to all schools and students who participated. THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


editor's note


Welcome to the 33rd issue of THE FOBISIAN eMagazine.

Everyone at HQ has been working from home during the lockdown, although we are reopening this month, and July will see Bangkok begining its 3rd stage of opening up and getting back to a 'new normal'.

This issue features three student events that managed to proceed just before the lockdowns were enforced - the Drama Festival at The Regent’s International School Bangkok, the Under 15s Pink Group Games in Phuket, and our Short Story Competition, hosted by The Alice Smith School.

EDITORS Siobhan Bland & Li-May Lim

CONTRIBUTORS TO THIS ISSUE Anthony Rowlands British International School HCMC & FOBISIA Board John Gwyn Jones MBE FOBISIA HQ Matthew Trearty Regent's International School Bangkok Victoria Miles & Lauren Ebsworth The Alice Smith School Kuala Lumpur Gavin Peever Harrow International School Bangkok & Royal Life Saving Society UK Lewis Keens & Alan Dunstan British School Manila Ross McGill @TeacherToolkit Stephen Honey Dulwich College (Singapore)

Lewis Keens and Alan Dunstan from British School

David Rowlands Keynotes Excerpts

Manila share their thoughts on what PE & Sport’s next new normal might look like, as well as our new Webinar Series which was launched in April 2020.

CREDITS & SOURCES Disposable Face Mask image from Word cloud by Superkimbo

The 2020-21 Calendar of Events is out! Term 1 will see

PE & Sport stock image from &

mainly online events and localised invitationals, while Quiz

Terms 2 & 3 are filling up fast. We hope you enjoy this issue.

If you have any suggestions, we would be delighted to hear from you. Factoid Vector images designed by freepik / / pch.vector

ABOUT THE FOBISIAN A termly eMagazine for sharing events and news among membership & affiliates. Three issues are published each academic year — in September (June to August content), February (September to January content), and June (February to May content). If you would like to contribute, please email the Editor at:

Best Regards, Li-May


the troubling global actions that have arisen from systemic “ Onracism, FOBISIA remains a diverse and inclusive community that “cares and shares” and promotes the principles of global citizenship (including equality, ethics and interculturalism) through collaboration and cooperation with our members and others all around the world



Community Forum A vibrant professional online community exclusively for FOBISIA Member Schools across Asia.


THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


2020-21 Calendar of Events A lists of all Student Events that should take place during the academic year 2020-21. All events are subject to change in light of the ongoing Covid-19 situation.

TERM 1: AUGUST - DECEMBER 2020 02 Nov - 01 Dec

Online Design and Technology Competition

Dulwich College (Singapore)

27 Nov - 29 Nov

Volleyball Invitational

Jerudong International School

28 Nov - 29 Nov

Gymnastics Invitational

Bangkok Patana School

Nov / Dec (TBC)

Online Social Studies Essay Competition

Garden Int'l School Bangkok

Dec (TBC)

Online Language Competition

FOBISIA / Education Perfect

TERM 2: JANUARY - MARCH 2021 01 Jan - 01 Mar

Online Art Competition

Dulwich College Seoul

22 Jan - 24 Jan

Swimming Invitational

Seoul Foreign School

Feb (TBC)

Primary Maths Challenge

British School Manila

04 Feb - 06 Feb

Drama Festival - Years 9&10

British School Manila

13 Feb - 17 Feb

U15s Yellow Games

Sports Camps Australia

19 Feb - 21 Feb

Netball U13, U15 & U19

Dulwich College (Singapore)

21 Feb - 25 Feb

U13s Pink Games

Sports Camps Australia

22 Feb - 05 Mar

Creative Coding Online

Regents Int’l School Pattaya

25 Feb - 01 Mar

U13s Blue Games

Sports Camps Australia

26 Feb - 28 Feb

Squash Invitational

Jerudong International School

Feb/Mar (TBC)

Robotics Competition

St. Andrews Int'l School BKK

05 Mar - 07 Mar

Touch Rugby & Rugby 7’s

Dulwich College (Singapore)

05 Mar - 07 Mar

Basketball Invitational

Bangkok Prep

10 Mar - 15 Mar

U15s Green Games

Sports Camps Australia


11 Mar - 12 Mar

Climbing Invitational

Garden Int'l School KL

12 Mar - 24 Mar

Varsity Football Invitational

Jerudong International School

12 Mar - 16 Mar

Primary Music Festival, Treble Cluster

The British School New Delhi

14 Mar - 18 Mar

U15s Green Games

Sports Camps Australia

17 Mar - 21 Mar (TBC)

Secondary Maths Competition

The English School of Mongolia

18 Mar - 21 Mar

Primary Maths Challenge

British School Manila

18 Mar - 22 Mar

U13s Yellow Games

Sports Camps Australia

22 Mar - 26 Mar

U13s Red Games

Sports Camps Australia

TERM 3: APRIL - JUNE 2021 March / April (TBC)

Golf Invitational

Sri KDU International School

03 Apr - 07 Apr

U15s Blue Games

Sports Camps Australia

17 Apr - 11 Apr

U15s Pink Games

Sports Camps Australia

24 Apr - 26 Apr

Intermediate Music Festival

The Alice Smith School KL

24 Apr - 26 May

Choral Festival

Charter International School

29 Apr - 03 May

U11s White Games

Sports Camps Australia

Apr / June (TBC)

Student Leadership Conference

Nexus International School

03 May - 07 May

U11s Pink Games

Sports Camps Australia

07 May - 11 May

U11s Purple Games

Sports Camps Australia

11 May - 15 May

U11s Blue Games

Sports Camps Australia

29 May - 02 June

U11s Green Games

Sports Camps Australia

02 June - 06 June

U11s Yellow Games

Sports Camps Australia

02 June - 05 June

Drama Junior Festival

Garden Int'l School Rayong

06 June - 10 June

U11s Red Games

Sports Camps Australia

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


FOBISIA COVID-19 IMPACT REPORT At its 2 April 2020 Meeting, the FOBISIA Board requested a report on the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the Federation. On 23 April 2020, FOBISIA HQ distributed a survey to its 81 Affiliate Members and 76 Member Schools. With a global health emergency announced by the World Health Organisation on 30 January 2020 due to the spread of coronavirus infections and deaths worldwide, FOBISIA Member Schools and HQ were plunged into the position of having to respond quickly to a developing crisis, to ensure the safety and wellbeing of staff, students and their school communities. Almost immediately, and on the dawn of Chinese New Year, which significantly mobilises people across Asia and beyond, Member School communities were faced with quarantine and travel restrictions, forced repatriations and evacuations, border and school closures, the commencement of online learning, and changes to student assessment. In just over three months, schools are now facing the lifting of restrictions at varying levels, the risk of second and third waves of infection, and the challenge of mobilising staff in readiness for the next academic year, with continued

uncertainty around recruitment

upgraded its video-conferencing

and student enrolments, all in

facilities, which has improved its

the shadow of a global economic

capacity to communicate with the


membership via the provision of webinars and virtual meetings.

Member Schools and HQ have had to initiate crisis management and

Member Schools have faced closures

make tough decisions on a range of

and cite the main parent concerns as

levels. Member School communities

school fees, followed by lost learning

have rallied together to support one

hours, exam cancellations, decisions

another during this unprecedented

other schools are making and lost

emergency. FOBISIA has supported

ECA hours, among others. The

and assisted Member Schools to

overwhelming concern is around

connect across the region and share

the wellbeing of staff, students and

experiences, good practice, and

the school community is isolation,

coordinate on crisis management.

followed by financial security,

FOBISIA HQ has also taken the

missing significant family events,

opportunity to collaborate with its

mourning loved ones and medical

global counterparts including BSME,

concerns, among others. Heads


have faced a range of challenges

“ The overwhelming concern is around

the wellbeing of staff, students and the school community is isolation, followed by financial security, missing significant family events, mourning loved ones and medical concerns... � AoBSO. From the onset of the

from managing the expectations of

pandemic, FOBISIA HQ moved

colleagues and parents, assessment,

quickly to provide regular

boarding, access to information

updates to schools on the status

and dealing with uncertainty,

of FOBISIA events and school

managing the ability to switch off

closures. Although the majority of

personally, and recruitment of

FOBISIA student enrichment and

teachers and students, among others.

CPD events have been cancelled,

The majority of Member Schools

Member Schools have managed

anticipated a drop in enrollments

to deliver full refunds for the

but not school fees next year.

majority of them. FOBISIA HQ negotiated with its games provider,

While a smaller majority of Member

Sports Camps Australia (SCA), to

Schools did not anticipate changes

achieve 90% deposit refunds for its Member Schools for the Under 13s Games that were cancelled. HQ has


(continued on page 35)

Meet Our NewBoard Members Chris Seal

Principal Shrewsbury International School Bangkok _________________________________ I am delighted to accept the nomination and vote to serve on the FOBISIA Board as the new Treasurer for the Federation. Coming towards the end of my third year in my first overseas role, I have thoroughly enjoyed the support from experienced Heads across the region through conference and networking. This friendship and camaraderie is a key element of any strong professional association, and clearly evident across all the FOBISIA events I have witnessed – it is therefore my privilege to serve. Before landing at Shrewsbury Bangkok I spent six years at Millfield in Somerset as Deputy Head, which allowed me to continue to indulge my great passion – sport. When the body allowed I played Minor Counties cricket for Suffolk CCC, and in my spare time did stints as Director of Sport and Housemaster at Trent College. Graduating from Loughborough in the days before Strength & Conditioning, I am old enough to have a subsidiary subject (History) alongside my Physical Education teaching and inflicted my obsession with castles upon students at Woodbridge and Licensed Victuallers’ as well as schools already mentioned. I look forward to supporting the board and fellow Heads over the coming years and bringing any relevant experience of 25 years in independent education to bear.

Stuart Bridge

Head of School Discovery Bay International School, Hong Kong _____________________________________ I am very pleased to have been nominated and voted in as FOBISIA's new Events Liaison on the Board. After graduating from Economics at Liverpool University in 1991, I worked as an accountant for KPMG before turning to the teaching profession. In 1994, I gained my PGCE from Hull University and haven’t looked back in over twenty five years in independent education. I was Head of Department at Magdalen College School, Oxford, for four years, which is one of the top-performing schools in the UK. I also enjoyed a three-year spell at Tanglin Trust School, in Singapore, where I was Assistant Head of Humanities. I was appointed Head of Sixth Form at Akeley Wood School in 2006. In March 2010, after successfully completing my MEd in Educational Leadership, I was appointed Associate Head at Akeley Wood School, and I also lectured in education at university level. Returning overseas in 2013, I was appointed Head of the Senior School at Dulwich College Suzhou and was internally promoted to Head of College in 2017. In August 2019, I moved across to Hong Kong as Head of School at Discovery Bay International School, where I currently remain. THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


Senior Drama Festival at The Regent's International School, Bangkok


n the 26th February, through adversity and numerous disruptions, schools started arriving for the 2020 Senior FOBISIA Drama Festival "All the World’s a Stage", at Regent’s International School Bangkok. Over the ensuing three days students worked in companies to explore four different styles of world theatre – Ancient Greek, Commedia dell’Arte, Renaissance morality performance and Pantomime. They witnessed a Thai Khon performance on a grand scale at Siam Niramit and traditional Thai puppetry within the school, with the opportunity to also learn how to operate them under the guidance of the professional performers. There was also a focus on street

food and throughout the Festival participants never went hungry with a range of Thai and western street food being freshly prepared.

“ The students

worked amazingly in their companies to produce really diverse and interesting takes, delivering high quality performances full of creativity” Our final night was a massive highlight as the students and staff 'got their party' on as we decorated one another with UV paint and glow-in-the-dark accessories, and partied away at our Koh Samet-


style UV disco. The whole event was great fun and culminated in students retelling Shakespeare’s "As You Like it", the play from which the speech "All the World’s a Stage" comes from, in one or more styles of world theatre, to bring a fresh new, modern and relatable perspective to this 400-year-old play. The students worked amazingly in their companies to produce really diverse and interesting takes, delivering high quality performances full of creativity. Everyone left with big smiles, new friends and new knowledge in world theatre and the skills to apply it in performance. Article by: Matthew Trearty, Head of Drama The Regent's International School Bangkok

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33



Short Story Competition

efore launching the annual FOBISIA Short Story Competition, we spent time thinking about the theme. We knew it had to be something broad and something that would inspire our young writers across Asia. Malaysia, where The Alice Smith School is located, had recently banned the use of plastic straws in order to protect its marine wildlife. This was definitely a talking point among our students and gave us the idea for a theme. Eventually, we decided on 'Protect' theme for our students to be creative with. In October 2019, we launched the competition and writers across Asia started to work on their entries. Much like previous years, we organised the competition into three age group categories: Years 3 and 4, Years 5 and 6 and Secondary. We also managed to recruit renowned author and illustrator, Curtis Jobling to work with us to judge the final entries. Curtis has worked with The Alice Smith Secondary School for a number of years and so seemed like an obvious choice.

global pandemic caused school closures across Asia with The Alice Smith School being no different. Consequently, our timeline of results had to be extended much to the understanding and support of the FOBISIA community. The response from each category was overwhelming!

“ With over

twenty entries per age category our imaginations were taken on a roller-coaster of emotions �

were creative, unique and wellwritten. Shortlisting five entries per age group was no mean feat. Curtis Jobling was amazed at the shortlisted entries we sent through to him. He was able to narrow down the finalists to an age-phase winner and two runners up for each category. Years 3 & 4 WINNER: 'One Spark' by Amelia at The Alice Smith School, Kuala Lumpur A clear winner with its strong message - not that every story needs one, of course, but this appears to come from the heart. A great friendship struck up between Luna and Smoky, and a real sense of jeopardy as our heroine sets out to save our desperate koala.

With over twenty entries per age category our imaginations were taken on a roller-coaster of emotions. From knights and RUNNER UP: ' Wisdom from As the well-known phrase goes, dragons, to the environment, to the Future' by Garam at Bangkok Patana School 'best-laid-plans', the COVID-19 an alien take over; the entries 16

Another story with its eye on the troubles we face today. Who doesn’t enjoy a spot of timetravelling in their tale-telling? Some super descriptions of the future wasteland, and a warning that we are masters of our own destiny. It’s never too late to change. RUNNER UP: 'Trapped in Time' by Sofia at The British School in Colombo Very much enjoyed the adventure aspect to this, with its building sense of peril. It does feel like the start of something bigger, so I’d be intrigued to read what happens next. Years 5 & 6 WINNER: 'Futile Protection' by Sizhe at Dulwich College (Singapore) Really enjoyed this story, and it put me in the minds of the great war poets such as Sieg fried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen. That anti-war message comes through loud and clear, with the 100 year anniversary of the First World War still in recent memory. Truly chilling writing, a gloomy, portentous worldbuild and a sombre, hopeless ending. Great stuff. RUNNER UP: 'The Dragon's Talisman' by Roselyn at The International School @ Park City, Kuala Lumpur Great to see the switch being played here, with the tale being told from the villain’s perspective. Colourful use of

language in describing not only the dragon but the world she used to fly in. The numerous piles of ash at the end is a great addition too. RUNNER UP: 'Into the Woods' by Harriet at Dover Court International School, Singapore A gothic ghost story with a riddling twist. Harriet’s world building was really evocative, and certainly placed me into the cursed forest of the story. I do love a good riddle - you can blame my favourite children’s book, The Hobbit. Secondary WINNER: 'Peach Pit' by Soraya at Jerudong International School A worthy winner of this category, and the best story in the entire competition to my eyes. A mature writing style with a distinct voice that places it within a world we all know, forged in the literature and stories of America’s deep south. And the peach pit itself ? Are we talking about that literal thing, or is the entity within something more profound and disturbing? A baby, perhaps, born to a troubled and confused young lady. Quite brilliant. Keep up the amazing work, Soraya. RUNNER UP: ' White Gazelle' by Summer at Taipei European School Really hard to make this a runner up, as it could win any

competition, but the quality across the board was so very strong. Summer describes an utterly convincing pair of worlds, from the hardship of Syria to the relative comfort of Turkey. Our protagonist’s journey is harrowing, compelling and believable, coming straight from the news and onto the page. Tremendous work, Summer. RUNNER UP: 'A Knight's Oath' by Yan Wei at HELP International School, Kuala Lumpur A clever subversion of the fairy tale roles that we all know so well, making this very much a “woke” fable for a new age. Whoever said our knight had to be male? Great to see a heroic female lead in such a story, bucking the expectations of the audience. Well done, Gan! The Alice Smith School would like to say a huge well done to all the students who entered the competition. We feel honoured to have read your stories and will be looking out for your names on the bestseller list in years to come.

Article by: Victoria Miles Head of Faculty - English and Media & Lauren Ebsworth EPLT: Learning & Teaching, The Alice Smith School, Kuala Lumpur

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


One Spark by Amelia

She screamed. Nothing. It was just a waste of breath. She watched the flames get closer and closer until she could have reached out and touched them. She fell. And was swallowed by the inferno... Luna Anderson woke with a jolt. Beads of sweat were streaming down her face. She peered cautiously out of the window and gasped. Choking, black smoke filled the air and everything looked liquid. Crackling flames licked the sooty, soulless sky, blood red against the darkness of the heavens. Then she saw it. At first it was just an inky smudge in the distance but then it became clearer. A baby koala. It was shuffling along the overgrown path trying to get away from the fiery monster behind it. Luna’s heart ached for it as she knew it was too slow to escape. Suddenly, an idea leapt into her mind. Maybe, just maybe she could save it? Without stopping to think she leapt through the open window and sprinted to the koala. She could feel her heart jumping around in her chest threatening to break out. If she didn’t run fast enough she could get seriously injured or even die! Her lungs were on fire like the sea of flames surrounding her but she couldn’t feel it. All she was thinking was “get to the koala”. She grabbed him and tore back to her house just as the wind changed direction taking the fire with it. The koala was trembling and Luna could see the sadness in his eyes. She wrapped him in a cosy blanket, stroked his velvety brownish-grey fur and whispered in a reassuring voice, “you’re safe now... Smoky”. She did not know where the name Smoky came from but it seemed perfect. Smoky looked up at her and almost seemed to smile. Then unexpectedly, Smoky said “thank you” in the squeakiest little voice. Luna jumped back and squealed in alarm. Her hands became cold and clammy. Her legs felt like jelly. Without warning Smoky clambered off the bed and nestled at Luna’s feet. All her worries melted away and were replaced by love and hope. Smoky spoke up again “there weren’t many of us left when the blaze started, and now I’m the only one left of my koala clan”. Luna nodded. “You humans keep cutting down our forest leaving us with no home and very little food”. “You then use electricity all the time. You cause global warming which creates crazy weather, and drought, leaving us with barely any water to survive”. Smoky burst into a flood of tears. Luna tried her best to console him and decided right there and then that she would fight to protect the koalas and the planet. Ten years later... Luna Anderson the world renowned earth warrior smiled as she rode her bike to her next speech. She surveyed her New Tree Planting Foundation and animal conservation centre. As she arrived, she took in the tranquil surroundings. Her koala by her side, always.


Futile Protection by Sizhe

A hurricane of misery screamed through the atmosphere, thunder roared, the wind howled, all men were silenced by the never-ending war, never ending blood, never ending murder. Crows danced to a rhythm of death, excited at their upcoming feast... I was protecting the trenches, as ice cold, frosty rain burnt me to my skin. As I heard the distant booming of gunfire, I wondered if it still was ‘fun’ to protect your country. I had been told that I had to protect the trenches while others slept, but wondered if the fat, lazy, obnoxious general who issued these orders from five miles behind the trenches, was doing anything to protect us, to protect least give us some warm clothes to brave the winter. The general was safe and protected, the ones who were risking their lives to help were in mortal peril. Footsteps pounded towards me, an army of putrid rodents scattered among the grasping mud, but I didn’t care, I was too tired, too exhausted to mind the threatening presence of the pests. The stench of rotting bodies, the sound of jubilant rats feasting on our friends and comrades dominated my senses as I stood there; loneliness, sadness, terror engulfed my soul. My mind drifted back to that day, the sun shining bright, a group of joyful, young men whistling happily, ready to sign up for war, I remembered the lies they used to tell us about protecting our families, king and country and, “It would be fun!” When the eagerly anticipated day finally came, we all departed for the train station. Immaculate in radiant boots with uniforms never worn before, we marched naively, innocent to war, just boys, just lambs led to the slaughter...countless crowds of jocular people, sang and cheered, wishing us good luck. Younger boys around the edge stared with jealous eyes, wishing away their precious youth to follow us to France, what fools we were...I heard a widowed mother whisper tenderly to her teenage boy, her only son doomed to die next week, “I’ll see you at Christmas!” I felt the cold, gold metal of the crucifix my mother gave to me as I left, sticking to my soaking chest. “God will protect you son, wear this always.” Little did she know how God had deserted this hell on earth, His protection meant nothing in this land of the devil. I felt a hint of burning hot anger inside of me, I wanted to vomit. As I recovered more memories from the past, the one that hurt the most was that of a close friend, killed in another pointless, pathetic battle. I recall his smile on that day when he died, but I couldn’t protect him, the crimson river of blood poured from countless bullet holes in his chest, little could I do... Over the horizon, black clouds charged towards the deadly battlefields, guns blasted, louder and louder, trying to outdo each other in a deadly competition, roaring like wild animals, taunting each other for a final fight...rats once haughty and arrogant, now flee towards their holes of doom, while a lonely eagle deserts this horrendous, most sickening place on earth. Dawn was breaking, day overpowered night. It was time for us to I am, alone in this army of millions, who will protect me?

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


Peach Pit by Soraya

I have a peach pit in my belly. Momma told me it’ll grow into a tree and sprout out of my mouth, she said it serves me right. She said I shouldn’t go around swallowing peach pits, but she said I shouldn’t spit ‘em out either. I don't argue with Momma. I can feel it in my stomach; out of the pit, itty bitty roots have wriggled their way out. Whatever I eat it takes a little bit too. I ate extra chocolate pudding at lunch when Momma wasn’t looking so it’ll grow big and strong. When I’m in bed all alone and my room looks the same with my eyes shut and with them open I can feel it growing, little by little, inside of me. On grey days when the sky is like Momma’s French onion soup and the rain whispers secrets to the pavement, the tree outside my window says hello. Swish, swish, pit, pat, swish, swish. I think that maybe I could understand what it’s saying now that I have a tree of my own inside me, but it isn’t a peach tree and I don’t think it’s talking to me. When I lay real flat I can feel a thump thump like my heart is beating in my tummy. I'm worried my peach tree is gonna try and grow out of my belly button. Tommy said I’m stupid, but he doesn’t talk to me much anymore. So I listen to my trees. Miss Day said my peach pit is the size of a fist. That didn’t sound too big but I thought I could feel the branches creeping up my throat. Those little sticks scratched against the back of my throat and I coughed and coughed until Miss Day said that maybe I should come back a week from now. Momma didn’t say anything to me on the drive back home. The branches stayed. I don’t go to school now but Lara Drummond saw me when I was with Tommy buying doughnuts at the big mall in the city. She waved at me but her Momma dragged her away before I could say hello. I know Lara likes doughnuts with pink icing just like me so I bought her one just in case I saw her again. The doughnut man looked at me funny, he must think I can’t eat two doughnuts all by myself. I tried to tell him that I was only eating one of them but Tommy walked away too quickly and I had to run to catch up. I think my peach tree is getting too big. I feel heavy walking around like I’ve got a weight on my back and my front and each step is gonna crack the pavement. I used to be able to run like a rabbit and now I walk as slow as Momma. She said it’s a good thing so I can’t run off and leave her sight. Sometimes I wish I could just run and run and run and never stop. When I look in the mirror I think about how my peach pit tree has taken up all of my insides. My bones are branches and my heart is filled up with leaves and my tree trunk stomach is too big for me. I was supposed to see Miss Day today but Momma took me to a different man called “call me Richard sweetheart”. He looked me up and down and shook his head and clucked like a chicken and I wish I could move but my tree limbs are stiff as a board. Today is the day. They’re gonna cut my peach tree right out of me. I was scared at first but Momma said it’ll be a whole lot worse if they don’t and I won’t feel a thing. I got to wear a funny gown with little blue flowers and get wheeled around. Tommy pushed me on that chair so fast I thought I’d throw up laughing but Momma whacked him and said to stop or he had another thing comin’. She wheeled me to a cold little ``room and I got all hooked up to machines like I was a cyborg in a...


... movie. Momma said that they pumped me so fullah' pain killers that I wouldn’t feel it if she shot me right in the leg. Those doctor people talk like you can’t hear them, I wanted to get angry but I couldn’t get my tongue to dance out the words and my head felt stuffed with cotton balls anyway. I was gonna just wave my arms around like a mad man but instead my eyes stopped seeing and I was fast asleep. All they said was, “here she is”. Dropped right into my arms a peach with all its flesh grown in around the pit and screaming and screaming. I couldn’t bear it, all that crying and wailing and so I shouted SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP and a nurse came and took it away from me. Every time I look at it, it looks like it’s rotting and dying and I can’t stand it. I just wanted Tommy but he never came into the room, I don’t think he wants to be my brother anymore. Momma cooed and clucked at it like she couldn’t smell it dying and I closed my eyes. I couldn’t sleep but I kept my eyes closed. I decided I was never opening them again. My peach pit escaped my belly. Momma said it serves me right. I don’t argue with Momma.

with students from a variety of curriculum areas and Key Stages. He has delivered story writing workshops in English, given illustration advice in Art and with Media Studies students he has explored animation and his experiences of working in the creative media industries.


urtis Jobling is the designer of worldwide hit children's television show 'Bob the Builder', and the author/illustrator of numerous children’s books. Although renowned for his work in film & TV, Curtis’s true love has always been horror and fantasy for older audiences. His acclaimed series of epic fantasy novels, ‘Wereworld' was published by Penguin worldwide, while his darkly comic young adult thrillers, 'Haunt: Dead Scared' and ‘Haunt: Dead Wrong’ were published by Simon & Schuster in the UK.

Curtis would be delighted to work with any of FOBISIA's Member Schools.

His middle-grade novels, 'Max Helsing & The Thirteenth Curse' and 'Max Helsing: The Beast of Bone Creek' are published by Viking in the US and Orchard in the UK. Curtis works across all ages. At Alice Smith he has engaged THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33



THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3 Issue 333, Issue



THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3 Issue 333, Issue



How Harrow Bangkok & the Royal Life SavingSociety promote Water Safety

rowning is among the ten leading causes of death for young people in every region of the world. When someone starts to drown, the outcome is often fatal. Survival usually depends on the speed of removal from the water and how quickly proper resuscitation can take place. As such, Harrow International School Bangkok is developing a strong link with the water safety and drowning prevention charity, the Royal Life Saving Society UK, known as RLSS UK. RLSS UK (then the Life Saving Society) was formed in 1891 by William Henry, driven by a

desire to reduce the number of drownings common at the time.

“Survival usually depends on the speed of removal from the water and how quickly proper resuscitation can take place” In 1904, after receiving support from the royal family due to


its good work, the Society was granted a Royal Charter and it became known as the Royal Life Saving Society. Further lifesaving displays in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa by William Henry, inspired others across the Commonwealth, to take up the cause. All members of the Harrow Bangkok lifeguard team, several teachers and graduate interns have achieved RLSS UK’s National Pool Lifesaving Qualification (NPLQ) which is regarded as the UK’s professional standard for lifeguarding. The NPLQ covers elements of pool rescue

techniques, lifeguarding theory, first aid and CPR. The course is physically demanding and includes swimming to set times, lifting casualties and diving to the deepest part of the swimming pool. There are three sections for the training and assessment of the NPLQ and all must be successfully passed to attain the qualification. Once qualified, the team continue to train every week and must formally requalify every two years to keep the accreditation. The instruction is provided in-house by one of the team members who

However, not all the training involves water-based rescues or first aid. Understanding basic water safety is key to creating a safe, enjoyable environment.

“Understanding basic water safety is key to creating a safe, enjoyable environment”

This year the lifeguard team have delivered input to nursery has recently completed the RLSS UK children, taught basic rescue skills NPLQ trainer course and follows a during a life challenges day and set programme that ensures that will be delivering a five-week all the necessary skills are regularly lifeguard course to the Year 5 refreshed. students, as part of the final term's

PE curriculum. 'Quemcunque miserum videris hominem scias' decorates the bronze medallion lifesaving award, it means 'Whomsoever you see in distress, recognise in them a fellow human being' and underpins all of the Society’s work. Harrow Bangkok is proud to be associated with RLSS UK and firmly believe, that schools can play a key part in helping to achieve the Society's ambition of enabling everyone to enjoy the water, safely.

Article by: Gavin Peever, Pool Manager at Harrow Bangkok and with permission from RLSS UK

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


PE & Sport:

The Next 'New Normal'

How post-quarantine PE and ExtraCurricular Sport might look, and why it’s not as bad as you think.

across the world as we plan for a return either before or after the summer break.

What Will Physical Education Lessons Look Like?

Think about the scenario above and relate this to PE: No sharing s we consider The Future of PE of equipment (physical touching after Covid-19 and delve deeper with hands/head/bare feet) and into the crisis, we know PE will not 2m physical distancing between return to ‘normal’ for some time, students. and distance learning or physical distancing (or both) may be in What part of your current operation when we return to school. curriculum currently fits those


Physical Education New Zealand has already issued guidelines in preparation for returning to school. Denmark and China are back at school. What can we learn from their experiences? In a piece in the TES, Dan Worth uses the US Navy Seal phrase ‘Adapt and Overcome’ and this could well be a motto for Physical Education

parameters? Probably very little. PE, as we know, it is about to undergo a considerable shift.

New Opportunities

Much of our distance learning has been physical activity-based, with the view that we will return to ‘normal’ reasonably soon. With the ‘new normal’ looking more likely to continue, we must learn quickly. ‘Go


for the gap’ to drive change is a phrase from ‘Legacy’ by James Kerr. Now is the time to practice what we preach, to show the character and growth mindset that we expect from our students to provide a long term plan for meaningful physical education lessons. What if physical distancing is still in place for most of the calendar year? This BBC article, amongst others, seems to point us in that direction. We have a real opportunity for PE to ‘rebrand’ and focus on the health and well-being of our communities. PE is more than just ‘the Games’. It is a chance to go back to basics and focus on helping our students to improve their movement vocabulary. The realities of physical distancing and not being able to share equipment means we are more inclined to move towards individualised learning activities in safe spaces.

Fundamental Movement Skills as cooperating with others). The context for the learning is Are Essential In ‘Making it Stick’, by McDaniel & Brown is the phrase “you only know what you know”. Knowledge in a PE context is often practical based in the form of fundamental movement skills. If a child does not know how to skip, hop, jump, they don’t have the fundamentals needed to be physically literate. They therefore won’t develop the confidence, competence and motivation to participate in physical activity in the future. These are often the adults we see that have had a negative PE experience and are hostile towards physical activity for life.

physical activity, with children experiencing a broad range of activities, including sport and dance”. Physical Literacy as defined by the International Physical Literacy Association: “Physical literacy is the motivation, confidence, physical competence, knowledge, and understanding to value and take responsibility for engagement in physical activities for life.”

competence, motivating movement onto smaller lego pieces. Physical Activity: Having enough confidence with a set that suits your ability: Whether Duplo, City, Technic, to Learn and Link combinations allowing independent building or collaboration with others in a non-competitive environment. Physical Education: This is more about how you build, where you build and values of engagement such as creativity, resilience and thinking skills. It also develops the knowledge of how to create effectively in different contexts.

We have tried to use lego as an Sport: The Transfer and application analogy to identify the different definitions and better understand the of what you have learnt. This could The terms physical education and be in a competition like Lego concepts. physical literacy are often misused, Masters with the possibility of interchanged and misunderstood. being judged on your outcomes. To become a ‘master builder,’ The Association for Physical It may include more specialist Education in the UK defines physical you need to have practised and diversification, e.g. Lego themes like attempted a range of building skills education as: to be competent, confident and have Architecture, Mindstorms, Creator, each having specific instructions the knowledge to build creatively “the planned, progressive with some opportunity for creativity. without instructions: learning that takes place in school curriculum timetabled Physical Literacy: Lego Duplo may The current crisis presents us with time and which is delivered to a unique opportunity for physical be a starting point. First, Learn the all pupils. This involves both educators across the world to basics; collect and sort the blocks. ‘learning to move’ (i.e. becoming Then try to create combinations, and introduce a child-centred approach. more physically competent) and Link together blocks with what you Physical Literacy levels are a crucial ‘moving to learn’ (e.g. learning have before trying to Transfer those indicator of participation in physical through movement, a range combinations into a final creation — activity in later life and benefit the of skills and understandings all the while building confidence and health and well being of our future beyond physical activity, such generations.

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


With this in mind: How many of your students in your school can do the following fundamental movement skills? • • • •

Run with good technique Run, stop and turn quickly Run, jump and land on 2 feet Perform locomotor skills like crossovers, skipping, hopping and galloping effectively and with quality Throw a ball overarm against a wall and see it rebound over their head Strike a ball with a stick/bat off a tee Perform a one-handed catch Dribble a basketball and football under control Kick a ball over distance Balance along a line in both directions under control Drop to the ground safely and get back up quickly

the brain and muscles more robust and autonomous (McDaniel & Brown). Asking students to be creative by combining skills to make them harder, e.g. skipping while catching a ball combines locomotor skills and coordination. This Learn-Link-Transfer process can incorporate skills such as applying, analysing, evaluating and creating, helping students to access further up the taxonomy of skills created by Benjamin Bloom.

Some of the evidence from countries that are going back to school show that classes may need reducing in size, and staff timetables made a little more flexible to cover split groups and a rota system of PE/Classroom activities.

Where a Primary and Senior school share resources and staffing, it may take some creative timetabling to solve usage of facilities. Where temperature/weather doesn’t • permit outside activities, alternative What Will Physical Distancing indoor spaces should be utilised. Look Like in Your PE Space? Classrooms may need to be adapted, • Your space will likely need sectioning corridors and open areas used. into areas which would allow your No shared equipment means that • class to develop their fundamental students may need to have a PE • skills without the possibility of ‘kit bag’ with a suggested list of the infringing into another student’s following items that are individually • ‘bubble’. This may involve: named and washed/disinfected • every day: • Coned boxes • • Straight lines • Yoga mat • Stations • Tennis balls x 3 • Track 4 Skills adapted from PLAYfun (CS4L) • Beanbags or rolled-up socks x 3 • Very small-sided/adapted games • Marker cones or spots x 6 • Swimming pool lanes (if Even if all your students can perform swimming is allowed) — • Football (age-appropriate size) these skills, revisiting them enhances simultanoeous dry side and pool • Basketball (age-appropriate size) performance and retrieval, thus activities • Alcohol wipes making their connections between • Sanitizer • Face mask • Water bottle • Gloves Planning for this with your department is going to be crucial. Making use of your school’s preferred planning tool, a fundamental movement skills unit may need to be designed from scratch. Having wholehearted ‘buy-in’ from all team members and a willingness to enter into this unknown will help too. 30

There are some excellent examples of programmes already in use that emphasise fundamental movement skills. These can adapt according to your school situation; Real PE from Create Development in the UK, PLAYfun in Canada and the work of Dominique Chiquet: Motor skill learning academy, in Switzerland. As we have seen in recent weeks, resources for individual lessons and activities will start to be developed and shared online. The worldwide PE Learning Communities will go into overdrive, and you mustn’t become lost in cyberspace. ‘Start With Why’, a great book by Simon Sinek, explains it is vital to create a stepped approach. Start with ‘Why’ before moving to ‘What’ and ‘How’. Apply this to filter the vast amount of resources online into what you need to help keep focus. Here is an example, using the ‘Why, What and How’ model of a possible action plan:


Your purpose: What is your cause? What do you believe? • To plan and initiate an inclusive, student-centred, fundamental skills-based curriculum under the guidelines set by the school/country in the aftermath of Covid-19

this programme to students best • To collaborate and plan fundamental movement skills-based units


What do you do? The result of 'why' The Proof • Fundamental movement skills units in place promoting physical literacy (Learn — Link — Transfer Model) • All staff teaching in safe spaces and implementing the guidelines • Students are accessing PE lessons and enjoying learning movement skills In ‘The Infinite Game’, Sinek suggests in times of crisis; “Instead of looking for ways to react to what has already happened, they (leaders) look for ways to do something new”. Physical activity is not enough; let’s make sure we are creative and hitting the ‘E’ in PE.

What about Sport?

The top football league in France, Ligue 1, recently became the latest, high-profile league in world sport to call a halt to its season. Despite ten games remaining, PSG were, this week, crowned as ‘Champions’. The Olympic Games has been cancelled (or at least postponed) What? Your process: Specific actions taken for the first time in 80 years. The last cancellation was back in 1940 to realise your why: • To research fundamental movement with coincidentally, Japan being skills programmes across the world the intended hosts on that occasion and find appropriate activities that too. The whistle has also blown on support the development of physical Euro 2020. Wimbledon is out, the Marathon circuit has hit the wall, literacy and even F1 has had the brakes put • To collaborate with your PE department to decide how to deliver on.

Where sport is still going ahead, athletes are anxious. In Brazil, protests are becoming more common as teams play despite significant health risks. Brazil’s president, Jair Bolsonaro, recently referred to the outbreak as ‘a little flu’. (Almost) wherever you look, difficult but sensible decisions safeguard athletes and supporters and ensure an individual’s health is the priority.

Are We Ready Yet?

Within the worldwide PE community, we have seen some outstanding examples of creativity shared through organisations and websites such as FOBISIA, PADSIS and PEASY, amongst others. As mentioned previously, on social media platforms teachers have made extraordinary efforts to develop strong education-based communities, with colleagues around the world taking the time to learn together, supporting and developing ideas from one another. This newly acquired remote learning toolkit may need to transfer to ExtraCurricular (EC) Sport programmes. Depending on local government guidelines, physical distancing rules and the length of time children are allowed in school each day, our regular programmes may look very different. Physical Education New Zealand’s current guidelines suggest we should prepare for a period without school sport: “There is to be no organised contact or non-contact sport (including team practices or trainings)”

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


Despite having no fixtures or competitions, is your school committed to delivering highquality EC Sport with individualised content both in real-life and possibly online too?

Look For Opportunities, Not Problems

In her fantastic TED Talk Kelly McGonigal introduces the idea of ‘making stress your friend’ as a way of improving our ability to respond to stress and use it as an opportunity for growth. Whatever the situation may be at the start of the new academic year, an absence of school sport gives us an extraordinary chance to get creative and make positive changes to our EC Sport programmes. We have known for years, as highlighted in books such as ‘Changing The Game’ by John O’Sullivan, that children want to be able to play without the pressures of results. We know the positive effect a multi-sports approach can

have on a child’s development with the transferring of skills being the catalyst to swift improvement and increased self-efficacy. In every school, some children excel and thrive in a competitive environment, but many EC Sport programmes rarely focus on developing lower ability children. Many lower ability kids attack

This paper from the Australian Sports Commission explores why this is the case and how schools can increase participation in senior school. Despite the fact that there may be an inclusive approach to EC Sport in your school — and if there isn’t, make the change now — many lower ability children lack self-confidence

“ Despite the fact that there may be an

inclusive approach to EC Sport in your school – and if there isn’t, make the change now – many lower ability children lack selfconfidence in sport due to their perceived ability in comparison with peers

every PE lesson with gusto and enthusiasm, their effort level high and often progress is good. Many of those same children don’t attend EC Sport programmes, especially those in senior school between the ages of 11–18.

Back to School in Denmark - 32

in sport due to their perceived ability in comparison with peers. Although these students enjoy being active and learning too, joining a competitive sport programme is a step too far for them. Small-sided

games make them feel intimidated, and even the word ‘competition’ makes them freeze in terror. Now consider EC Sports programmes that are both open and appropriately pitched for all abilities. As there is no selectionbased competition on the horizon, sessions can focus on improving an individual’s sport-specific technique, knowledge and fitness. Now this group of children might respond quite differently. We have the chance to address psychological and sociological issues children have around sport and potentially remove underlying barriers to improve access, placing the child right at the heart of what we do and why we do it.

PE and Sport Working Together

Improving scores and results in school sport needn’t be the sole focus on an effective EC Sport programme. With consideration and collaboration, physical literacy can and should be woven throughout both curriculum lessons and EC Sport programmes. Referring back to physical literacy approaches such as PLAYfun; with some time and

diligence, all sports can be adapted to help Learn, Link and Transfer fundamentals skills into context.

on the sidelines, some channel enthusiasm in the right way, others, unfortunately, don’t. Coaches often feel pressure to get results, and this How many of these are a undoubtedly will come across in the fundamental part of the competitive way they interact with children and sports delivered at your school? other coaches too. • Running • Locomotor/ movement skills • Object control – upper and lower body • Balance, stability and body control Are students given a chance to develop these in EC Sport programmes? Allowing children the chance to interleave and transfer concepts from PE to sport in this manner will not only improve cognitive development, but it will also enable them to appreciate how PE and Sport complement one another in a broader context.

Creative Coaching

‘Companies do their most impactful and creative work in a crisis because the disciplinary boundaries fly out of the window.’ - An observation by Bill Gore in Range, by David Epstein.

Like teachers and students, many coaches rely on structure; they often shape their practice and methods by coaching towards an outcome or result. Whether that be an international tournament eight weeks away or weekly, readying teams for local fixtures, a safe ‘default mode’ is often the popular choice to ensure preparation is the focus and a performance winds up being there or thereabouts. Competitive sport is likely to be limited due to travel restrictions and physical distancing guidelines. Term one is, therefore, a unique period for many schools, an ‘off-season’ of sorts and an opportunity to turn the focus away from competition, thus removing the structure coaches are used to and potentially making them feel very vulnerable.

In this powerful TED Talk, Brené Brown reminds us: “ Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, We have all seen enthusiastic coaches creativity, and change.”

“ Competitive sport is likely to be limited due to travel

restrictions and physical distancing guidelines. Term one is, therefore, a unique period for many schools, an ‘off-season’ of sorts and an opportunity to turn the focus away from competition, thus removing the structure coaches are used to and potentially making them feel very vulnerable

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


Embracing and addressing this vulnerability will be an essential step in giving coaches the confidence to develop and try new things. Some may question their purpose without games and competition. Many coaches will be fearful of what the future brings, and almost all will be learning and testing ways to engage students session by session.

transferring skills is a chance for a coach to develop rather than panic.

With time to reflect and share, there will be some fantastic ideas in teams and professional learning communities across the world. Having weeks of remote learning behind us, we are more aware than ever of the time, effort and creativity that goes into high-quality teaching and learning, and how important it is to stick together and support colleagues.

Will This Change School Sport • To be role models and demonstrate Forever?

Schools traditionally hold induction periods for coaches and coaching teams before the start of each academic year. Why not make use of this time and share the excellent practice and lessons learned so far? This will help develop coaches and staff in preparation for delivering skill, knowledge, and fitness-based EC Sport sessions, both on-site and remotely. Coaches approaching the start of the new year with quality direction, opportunities to collaborate and the chance for professional development will feel supported and more confident in their approach to a new routine. This confidence will help them be creative in whatever context ends up being the next new normal, individualised real-life sessions or via online video platforms. A focus on learning, linking and

Who knows, it might even open a coach’s eyes to the importance of developing lower ability students new to the sport and could go a long way to providing a calm, childcentred focus, away from the bright lights and pressure of competition.

centred decisions to impact positively on the future. All of the adaptations suggested, and the many other ideas that come along the way will help to refocus EC Sport and reconsider what school programmes offer and why. One thing that hasn’t changed is our responsibility as PE Teachers, sports coaches and leaders:

By improving transfer links between the values what we want to see from our students PE and EC Sport, developing • Those values still apply even if and supporting staff and coaches, competitive school sport is paused improving inclusive provision, sharing good practice and removing In the words of Simon Sinek (again) pressure from children and coaches, from his book The Infinite Game: we can implement positive change and enhance EC Sport programmes. “Resilient companies may come out the other end of upheaval entirely different than they were when they Simon Sinek, in his book, ‘The went in (and are grateful for the Infinite Game’, reminds us all transformation)” to be open-minded and take the opportunities we have to transform How could your team apply this to for the better. your set of circumstances? “Finite minded players do not like surprises and fear any kind of disruption. Things they cannot predict or control could upset their plans. The infinite minded player, in contrast, expects surprises, even revels in them, and is prepared to be transformed by them”. Arguably no other aspect of school life gives children more opportunities to learn about themselves and their capabilities than in competitive sport. Competitive sport and the values it develops will always have a place in school. Times like this just allow reflection and opportunities for positive change, to make child-


Continue to share good practice, talk, engage and debate with fellow professionals. In the long term, we will all come out of this stronger and better equipped to help our students in an ever-changing world. We can do it. Good luck! Article by: Lewis Keens & Alan Dunstan, Director of Sport & Activities and Curriculum Leader at British School Manila, Philippines Adapted from:

You can follow them on Twitter Lewis Keens @lewisjkeens Alan Dunstan @ARJDunstan

(continued from page 12)

permissions, conference discounts, and sponsorship opportunities.

changes to the school calendar,

There is a lot of scope to utilise social

an overwhelming majority were

media and webinars to connect our

were apprehensive about both

Affiliate Members with Member

international travel and being able

Schools. While it was too early to

to commit to FOBISIA CPD and

tell how COVID-19 had changed the

Student Events next year. Member

way they would do business going

Schools found the support provided

forward, an increased virtual and

by FOBISIA HQ to be useful,

online presence was highlighted,

particularly its CEO Circulars,

alongside increased competition in

events updates, webinars and shared

the online space. Other suggestions

online learning opportunities. The

included an increase in free offerings,

most commonly suggested area

increased caution on credit terms

that FOBISIA HQ could have taken

and a potential contraction of

a bigger role in was sharing the

business opportunities. Despite

planning and operational responses

this, more than two-thirds of our

of its Member Schools during

Affiliate Members said they would

COVID-19 and providing a forum

still be seeking to attend our annual

for Heads to discuss them.

leadership conference, once there is more clarity on quarantine and travel

The vast majority of Affiliate

restrictions, and that travel was more

Members are located outside

likely in 2021.

Asia and closed their offices

BSM Sport Values

due to COVID-19. The main

Despite the global pandemic, the

challenges they have faced include

Federation has managed to welcome

cancellation or postponement

six new schools since March,

of school programmes, loss of

bringing it to a total of 76 Member

revenue and supply of stock, and

Schools, and 81 Affiliate Members

travel restrictions. Just over half

have renewed their membership

of them anticipated budget cuts as

again this year. FOBISIA CEO, John

a result of COVID-19. Although

Gwyn Jones MBE and the HQ team

less than half of FOBISIA's Affiliate

have worked hard in supporting

Members are working with Member

the membership through these

Schools, nearly two-thirds reach out

unprecedented times in order to help

to them during COVID-19. Just

them move forward and make key

over half of our Affiliate Members

decisions. FOBISIA would like to

offer online CPD, Student Events

thank the 33 Member Schools and 30

or other services that would be of

Affiliate Members for participating in

interest to them during COVID-19.

the survey that informed this report

The most popular membership

prepared by FOBISIA HQ. Please

benefit among Affiliates is emails

contact Siobhan Bland at FOBISIA

to Heads of School or specific

HQ ( for

faculties, followed by the FOBISIA

a copy of the FOBISIA COVID-19

Handbook & Directory, logo

Impact Report.

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


Why do British Teachers Work Overseas?


he more I visit schools around the world, increasingly I am understanding why so many British teachers have left the U.K. to work overseas. The lure of warmer climates is certainly a factor, but it is not the driving force. Despite marking, emails, report writing and lack of time blighting teachers – across the world – in any school context I have visited, here are some of the key reasons why our teachers are working overseas in not-forprofit schools: • No requirement to teach SATs • A flexible curriculum

• • • •

Smaller class sizes Better facilities Students that want to learn Almost no behaviour issues, which means teachers ‘can teach’ • Longer holidays and better pay and conditions, as well as all the benefits an ex-pat life may bring to the individual/family. It’s a no-brainer really! Why on earth would teachers choose to work in a high-stakes accountability system in any OECD country? ‘Teaching to the test’ and ridiculous levels of workload or behaviour management make it impossible to do your job,


you can see why so many British teachers have left the British Isles to work overseas. However, in the defence of our English schools, it is not all doom and gloom. From the 150+ schools and colleges I have visited, I’ve captured their challenges and successes in ‘Just Great Teaching’. My new research to raise the profile of verbal feedback is also being received widely. I suspect the international schools that follow the British curriculum will soon follow suit with the recommendations from this research.

How are teachers supported overseas?

From 12-17 November 2019, I visited Penang in Malaysia to attend the FOBISIA bienial Teaching Community Conference. The event was attended by 160 teachers and I was fortunate enough to be asked to lead the opening keynote and a couple of practical teaching workshops over the two-day event. The programme offered a wide range of teaching topics for newly qualified teachers, as well as school leaders and teaching assistants. My approach to much about teaching and learning is addressing teacher wellbeing from a pragmatic perspective, discussing workload and wellbeing head-on with research into teacher attrition in England (as well as Malaysia). Click the bullets points below to see what the issues are arising from surveying 160 teachers in the room from across South East Asia. • Number one workload issue • Where do teachers lack confidence? • What do teachers find challenging? • What do headteachers find challenging?

Does your school provide the conditions for you to grow?

Over the two days at the conference, there was a large number of workshops delivered by a range of teachers. In my keynote

I raised these important issues around 'teacher pressure': 1. All leaders must reduce workload 2. Challenge habits and perceptions 3. All ideas = bad when X frequency / compliance 4. Reform meetings! 5. Narrative: Replace ‘marking’ with ‘feedback’ immediately 6. Mental health conversations matter ... 7. Collective teacher efficacy: Interrogate, interpret, inform 8. Cognitive load – do less, more effectively 9. Experience matters; share ideas.

Bringing teacher wellbeing and effectiveness to life!

In my Mark Plan Teach (MPT) Workshops, my aim was to bring all of the ‘teacher- pressures’ to life, disseminating key concepts from my research and with the 100+ teachers I worked with to develop the MPT methodology. Based on the feedback from teachers attending, I spent more of my time working with them to offer marking and assessment ideas to help reduce the workload burden – even for teachers working in salubrious surroundings, including:

3. Zonal marking – or yellow box feedback 4. Modelling – I do, we do, you do 5. Share the success criteria! Here’s a great example of how to teach resilience 6. The 5 Minute Marking Plan – focused marking 7. The 5 Minute Lesson Plan – stickability 8. Wait Time – Fermi and Hinge 9. Cold Call; No Opting Out – based on upon Doug Lemov’s fabulous Teach Like A Champion 10. and the Question Matrix – ask (planned) questions to reduce workload and improve effectiveness All of the above is captured in this one blog post. Due to the hospitality and the friendliness of the conference – which I’ve never seen anywhere else – I offered an impromptu coaching session over the lunch break so that I could share as much as I possibly could with the teachers who wanted to learn more about observation reliability. It was an amazing experience and I consider myself very fortunate enough to have been invited by FOBISIA.

1. All teachers should have high expectations of all students – the Pygmalion Effect 2. Data – look at the full picture – including SEMH – do you have a secure overview of assessment?

Adapted and extracted with permission from Ross McGill and his Blog

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33



An Interview with Ross McGill

OSS McGILL, also known as @TeacherToolkit, is the ‘most followed educator on social media in the UK’ with a blog and resource site that empowers all teachers to reduce their workload and become more effective in their work. Ross has been a teacher for 25+ years in state schools across London. He is frequently asked to speak at national conferences and is an award winning blogger and author. To date he has worked with over 100 schools in 8 countries. The Sunday Times listed Ross as one of the ‘500 Most influential People in Britain’ - the only classroom teacher to have been featured. He is currently studying for his doctorate at Cambridge University. FOBISIA's CPD Executive Daphne Wong interviewed Ross McGill to find out more about what makes him tick. How have you been occupying yourself during lockdown? During lockdown I have found myself leading webinars online and so far, have reached over

3000 teachers in 40 countries. It's keeping me busy, supporting my mental health, alongside my doctoral studies and writing two new books.

Your work has brought you to many different countries, working with various schools, how do you envisage this will change in the next year?

I have already cancelled all my international work simply because it is impossible to plan anything. Typically, overseas events are planned three to six months in advance, so I cannot see myself reaching any countries overseas until September 2021. In situations where I plan to work


inside the school building across the UK, I suspect with social distancing rules in place, training days as we know it will be very different and we will all need to adapt. I do not see why we should not consider online events for the immediate future.

Many of your books focus on teaching strategies within classrooms, with more home learning in place now, how can these tips be applied?I found it very difficult to work from home with a nine-year-old son. There are also different boundaries and emotions involved, so even though I am a qualified teacher, it has been incredibly difficult to

teach my own child! I thought quite hard about all the teaching strategies I recommend using with other peoples children, and I'm curious to learn how these cannot be applied as a parent, at home. It's new territory for most of us...Â

as well as in the homeschooling I support at home. Top tip: 20 minutes on, 20 minutes off! Create rewards, articulate and write out goals to achieve. Reward yourself as well as your child - and don't be so hard on yourself.

What is the best advice for our teachers working from home and juggling a family?

What is your fondest memory of FOBISIA's 2019 Teaching Community Conference?

During lockdown, I have been reading and researching about memory and the brain. The more I learn the more I realise how I could have improved my teaching strategies throughout my career. I'm now trying to adopt this in my work at home,

Firstly, the community spirit was a real memory. (written about it here). I loved the experience of meeting educators from across the region, plus the food and the hot weather. It was also lovely to see how St. Christopher's International Primary School

supported the visit and learn more about the work they do.

How have you adapted as a speaker to Covid-19?

All my work is now online, leading webinars and virtual conferences. It's been interesting and fun. The greatest thing I've learnt is it's great fuel for my mental health and I suspect, everyone else. It's essential we carry on supporting one another until normal service resumes.Â

Do you have any advice on looking forward? Be kind, keep calm and carry on!

"Ross's knowledge and range is encyclopedic.." " The book has become my little bible.."

".. a book that all teachers deserve to read" "Clear and easy to read, straigh forward and achievable advice, with real examples..." THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33



n 23 April 2020 we welcomed Wales and British & Irish Lions Rugby Union legend, Shane Williams MBE, as our first guest on the FOBISIA Sports Club Social. FOBISIA CEO, John Gwyn Jones MBE applied all he had learned from watching 'Parkinson' over the years to host with confidence and good humour, posing some insightful questions from colleagues across the region.

The aim of the Sports Social Club is to use video conferencing to put talented sports performers and coaches in your homes, giving us all the chance to hear a few fascinating stories, have our questions answered and enjoy a few laughs too. We had eighty-nine colleagues listen to Shane as he spoke with

enthusiasm around numerous topics including; his father’s famous bet on him becoming Wales’ record try-scorer, his picks for the next Lions Tour, his time playing in Japan and how Gymnastics and a multi-sports approach helped him to become one of the world’s best Rugby players.

in AFC and FIFA competitions. Simon spoke candidly and with good humour around a number of interesting topics raised by colleagues, including player development, the challenges of coaching in Asia, respect for referees, and of course, VAR. There was no song in this episode!

Shane showed humility and honesty throughout the chat and presented himself as a real gentleman. He was keen to offer his support for FOBISIA, offering to join our HoPE Conference and John even managed to get a song out of him before the hour was up! In our second webinar in the series, we welcomed Football Coach, Simon McMenemy. John had already set the bar high for hosting and his lead was very much my benchmark as I stumbled my way through the questions sent in from colleagues. Simon has coached a number of clubs in the region enjoying stints in Vietnam, The Philippines and Indonesia. He is also part of a selected group of coaches that has led two national teams, having coached The Philippines and Indonesia


Click the embedded links on the pictures or the names below to watch the conversations with Shane Williams or Simon McMenemy. We hope to announce another FOBISIA Sports Club Social guest soon, will keep you posted!

Article by: Lewis Keens FOBISIA's PE & Sport Committee Chair and Director of Sport & Activities at British School Manila


n Monday 18 May, FOBISIA hosted the first in their CPD webinar series entitled ‘The Positive Impact Teaching Assistants Can Have During School Closure’. The event was hosted by Susan Walter — Head of Primary at Discovery Bay International School, Benyna Richards — Continuous Professional Development Director at Tanglin Trust School and Stephen Honey who is Head of Academic Development (Academic Support Staff) at Dulwich College (Singapore). The primary focus of the event was on sharing good practice and helpful advice for enabling Teaching Assistants (TAs) to continue to make a positive difference to the students in

their schools during school closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The content of the webinar was tailored towards supporting middle and senior leaders who lead and manage the support staff in their schools.

“ ..sharing good

practice and helpful advice for enabling Teaching Assistants to continue to make a positive difference to the students in their schools during school closure... ” Each of the presenters shared helpful strategies from their

experiences in their own schools and useful take-away advice that can be adopted by colleagues in other FOBISIA schools. Susan focused on how TAs can be utilised effectively for teaching and learning as well as pastoral support whilst working remotely. Stephen discussed successful strategies for ensuring TAs are fully supported and well connected within the wider school community. Benyna explained ways to support TAs to identify their own professional development goals and successfully engage in online CPD. Following the presentations, there was a question and answer session for the panellists from the audience.

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


A recording of the event can be found here or on the FOBISIA Community Forum for anyone who missed it and would like to know more.

CPD Webinar Survey Feedback

It is anticipated that more events of this nature will be hosted online in the future in order to share good practice on a variety of themes across the FOBISIA network of schools. Article by: Stephen Honey Head of Academic Development Dulwich College (Singapore)

FOBISIA's first in the CPD Webinar Series, "The Positive Impact Teaching Assistants Can Have During School Closure", had 79% attendance rate (85 registered, 67 attended), with the majority of the attendees staying throughout the one-hour webinar session.

Feedback from the webinar survey was overwhelmingly positive. 31 responses were received with 97% of respondents finding the webinar useful. 42% of respondents reported the likelihood of recommending colleagues to watch the video as ‘Extremely Likely’.

Answers to last terms quiz:

K Country Consonants

Cryptic Countries

Can you name the countries from the clues given?

Pick the consonants in the six countries begining with K? B
























Stay where you are



Upper legs everywhere



It's really cold


South America

Grr, it's raining again


Middle East

Want food



Frozen place



I sprinted



Words ending in " VY "

Name six words four letter words that end with " VY "?





Two on your chest





Definitely not!







Universally Challenged #02 Latin Translations

Can you fill in the blanks for the missing translations? ENGLISH MEANING


Seize the Day

Carpe Diem

After Death


___ ___ _____ ______

Caveat Emptor

I Came, I Saw, I Conquered

____ ____ ____

_____ __ ___ ______

Vox Populi

____ ___ ____

Quid Pro Quo

______ _

Alter Ego

Hail Mary

___ _____

In Wine, Truth

__ ____ _______

___ ____ _ _______

Deus ex machina

Before the War


Stiffness of Death

_____ ______

___ ______

Per Capita

_____ ____

Terra Firma

Word for Word


Current factoid:

The Spanish flu of 1918 was the deadliest in human history and, despite the name, didn’t actually originate in Spain. Its name was coined largely due to Spanish neutrality in World War 1. Read more The answers will be revealed in the next issue. Happy quizzing! THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33


Keynotes Edition 51, May 2020

The importance of creativity


ill Lucas, writing in the TES, argues that schools should not neglect creativity. “Crank up efforts to get creativity blooming”. TES 13th March, 2020. Mr Lucas notes that there has been an increasing awareness of the importance on creativity. The Durham Commission on Creativity and Education defines it as, “The capacity to imagine, conceive, express or make something that was not there before”. Employers are looking for creative abilities amongst their recruits, and schools are best placed to develop them. Many national curricula identify skills associated with creativity; whilst a handful explicitly set out how creativity should be taught. Some countries have made creativity one of the core components of the curriculum. The essence of creativity is divergent thinking: - coming up with a variety of solutions to a single problem, or question. How can creativity be developed in a school setting? Lucas proposes a five-dimensional model. Pupils need imagination, an enquiring mind, persistence with a task, a disciplined approach to problem solving and an ability to collaborate with others. For creativity to flourish, it must be fully integrated within the school’s curriculum. There are opportunities in all subjects to develop the skills associated with creativity, it should not be viewed as solely applicable to the arts. A group of students working on a science investigation, for example, could be challenged to find alternative explanations for their findings. Arguably, this is as much a creative activity as students questioning the choice of metaphors

in a poem. PISA has announced that it will include creativity as part of its 2021 student assessment. Countries have been invited to take part in trials this year, but the DfE has opted not to participate. This, Bill Lucas believes, is a mistake.

Memory Learning Techniques


ith modular examinations, students tend to cram intensively for each unit assessment. Once it is out of the way, and the scores banked, students turn their attention to the next module. This style of examination may work well in higher education where specialist detailed knowledge is required on a particular topic, but at secondary level it is less than ideal and has various unintended consequences for examinations at GCSE and A-level. Firstly, and most obviously, candidates’ knowledge becomes compartmentalised in discreet pockets. In theory, students should be able to link these elements of knowledge, cross reference between related topics and make inferences where appropriate. In practice, this doesn’t happen as much as it should, primarily because of time constraints and accountability pressures. Cramming, a style of learning known as “massed practice”, does not lead to good long-term retention of material. Research shows that spaced practice – information learned and recalled over an extended period of time - is far more likely to become embedded in long term memory. But since the UK’s examination system returned to a linear model, some teachers, particularly younger ones, have struggled to find ways to ensure their pupils retain information taught several months before. These teachers missed out on a key learning


strategy since they, themselves, studied under the modular system. Articles occasionally appear in the educational press where teachers share strategies for regular practice and revision of earlier work, as though this is something new and innovative. Whilst these efforts should be applauded, it is sad to think that what was once second nature to teachers is now considered ground breaking.

Relationships Education


he new relationships education curriculum is due to be taught from September. International schools are well aware of the difficulties this will cause in some countries, but the issues are not confined to overseas. In England, the DfE decided, not unreasonably, that individual schools should consult with their parents to explain the detail of the new curriculum. The very fact that schools are expected to ‘consult’, (as opposed to ‘inform’) has given parents the impression that they can somehow influence the curriculum. There have already been significant incidents resulting from these meetings. One primary school in Birmingham was picketed by angry parents at the school gates and the headteacher had to seek a court injuction to restore order. Another primary head reported “deeply unpleasant” meetings with parents on the issue. The disagreements over relationships education, specifically same sex relationships, is likely to be repeated in every school across the country. What, if anything, is the DfE doing for schools and teachers prior to the introduction of this new curriculum? At the moment, teachers feel very vulnerable.

TES 7th Feb 2020, “relationships education” Much of the problem stems from the fact that the DfE has given schools scope to teach various elements of the new RSE curriculum as and when they deem it appropriate. As a consequence, there is a perception amongst parents that the schools can be held accountable for what is to be taught and at what age. This was always going to be controversial. Following the new curriculum, primary schools must teach about heterosexual and same sex relationships, but specific LGBT issues are reserved for secondary level. As the law currently stands, parents can withdraw their children from sex education classes, but not from the RSE classes. Unsurprisingly, parents find it difficult to reconcile the DfE’s logic on this. TES 14th Feb, 22020, Ann Mroz’ editorial.” The DfE’s cowardly RSE stance is as vague as it is disgraceful”.

It is not yet clear just how this is going to work out. The majority of parents are happy that schools are taking on the responsibility of educating their children in the ways of the world, but a significant minority hold strong views on the subject.

Interviews Mark Steed, CEO of the Kellet School, Hong-Kong, wrote a thoughtprovoking article in the TES on the short comings of modern interview techniques. TES 27th March, 2020 “ We’re sucking the life out of teacher interviews”.

discrimination or favouritism. Mr Steed says, “We have wrapped our interviews in so many layers of political correctness that we have forgotten that schools are fundamentally about people and relationships”. His solution has been to withdraw from panel interviews, preferring, instead, to have an informal chat with each candidate. His favourite question being, “Pick any topic, ... and teach it to me in a couple of minutes”. This, he finds, can reveal a great deal about an individual. The subject matter is not important, but their enthusiasm, and the way they present their subject, is. Teachers, Mark Steed argues, must be able to inspire and challenge, and this is what he is looking for in this mini presentation. Following on from Mr Steed’s article, I suspect there is a rich vein of inciteful questions or interview tactics headteachers have developed over the years. If those of you experienced in recruitment would like to send me one or two of your favourites, I will collate them for the next edition of Key Notes. Suggestions, by email please, to . To set the ball rolling here is one that, though not particularly original, has served me well: - ‘Give me three words to describe yourself.’ The answers can be surprisingly revealing about a candidate’s character.

Pension provision overseas

International schools need to be mindful of the benefits teachers from the UK may be giving up when they choose to work abroad. However, most teachers see it as a “temporary” He argues that modern interviews are move so think their TPS pension formulaic, adhering to a prescribed will not be unduly affected by a short script and asking the same predictable break. But many teachers renew their questions of all candidates. Interview contracts – in many cases, time and panel members tread a narrow again. A COBIS survey found that path, trying to ascertain whether 29% of teachers who move overseas, the candidate’s philosophy and are still teaching abroad 10 years on. approach dovetails with that of the COBIS “Teacher Supply in British school – whilst steering well clear of International Schools,” July 2018 anything that might be construed as Most International schools are locked

into their host country’s national pension scheme, with both teacher and the school contributing. If there is no scheme, schools tend to provide some form of end of service gratuity. Whilst this is undoubtedly appreciated by the teacher, it is never going to match the new TPS employers’ contribution of 23.6% salary. Experience suggests that teachers, particularly young teachers, don’t give much thought to pensions or long-term financial planning. Some schools are proactive in this regard and provide all staff with introductions to financial advisors. Whether teachers heed the advice, is another matter – but at least the school has tried. One possible scenario, to encourage saving for a rainy day, is for the school to suggest that teachers forego, say, 5% of their salary. Once the teachers finally leave the school’s employment, they receive the 5% of salary they forfeited, multiplied by the number of years’ service. Crucially, the school matches this amount, by way of a gratuity. The joint contributions represent 10% p.a. of the teacher’s final salary for each year worked. Under this scheme, the teacher is encouraged, but not obliged, to save. The overall cost to the school is relatively modest (one twentieth of the annual salary) and if the teacher doesn’t agree to the salary deduction, it costs the school nothing. However, some governing bodies may be uneasy at the prospect of teachers leaving without some financial safety net. If this is the case, the school could provide a small gratuity that is not dependent on teacher contributions, plus a further amount to match any contributions the teacher might chose to make by way of voluntary salary deductions.

Excerpts selected from Keynotes No. 51 by David Rowlands

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33



International School Brunei (ISB) Jerudong International School (JIS) Hornbill School Brunei (HSB)


Discovery Bay International School (DBIS) Kellett School Hong Kong (KSHK)


Dulwich College Beijing (DCB) Dulwich College Shanghai Pudong (DCS) Dulwich College Shanghai Puxi (DCSPX) Dulwich College Suzhou (DCSZ) Harrow International School Beijing (HISC) Nord Anglia International School Shanghai, Pudong (NAIS) Shenzhen College of International Education (SCIE) The British International School Shanghai, Puxi (BISSPX) The British School of Beijing, Sanlitun (BSB SLT) The British School of Beijing, Shunyi (BSB SY) The British School of Guangzhou (BSG) Wellington College International Shanghai (WCCSI)





British School Jakarta (BSJ)

Haileybury Almaty (HBA)


Canadian International School, Bangalore (CIS) The British School New Delhi (TBSND)

Panyathip International School, Laos (PIS)

elc International School (elc) Epsom College in Malaysia (ECiM) Garden International School Kuala Lumpur (GISKL) HELP International School, Kuala Lumpur (HIS) Kinabalu International School (KIS) King Henry VIII College (KH8) new Kolej Tuanku Ja’afar (KTJ) Marlborough College Malaysia (MCM) new Nexus International School (NISM) Prince of Wales Island International (Primary) School, Penang (POWIPS) new Prince of Wales Island International School, Penang (POWIIS) Sri KDU International School (SKIS) St. Christopher’s International Primary School, Penang (SCIPS) The Alice Smith School, Kuala Lumpur (KLASS) The British International School of Kuala Lumpur (BSKL) The International School @ Park City (ISP) The International School of Penang (Uplands) (ISPU) 38 46

18 countries, 76 schools and growing MONGOLIA


The English School of Mongolia (ESM)

The British School Yangon (BISY)



The British School Kathmandu (TBS)


Dover Court International School Singapore (DCISS) Dulwich College (Singapore) (DCSG) Tanglin Trust School (TTS)


The British School in Colombo (BSC)

British School Manila (BSM)


Dulwich College Seoul (DCSL) Seoul Foreign School (SFBS) North London Collegiate School Jeju (NLCS)

TA I WA N Taipei European School (TES)


Bangkok International Prepatory & Secondary School (BPREP) Bangkok Patana School (BPS) British International School, Phuket (BISP) Brighton College International School Bangkok (BCIS) new Bromsgrove International School, Thailand (BIST) Charter International School (CHA) Garden International School Eastern Seaboard Ban Chang (GISR) Garden International School, Sathorn, Bangkok (GISBKK) Harrow International School Bangkok (HISB) Regents International School Pattaya (REGP) Shrewsbury International School Bangkok City Campus (SCIE BC) new Shrewsbury International School, Riverside Campus (SHR) St. Andrew’s International School Sukhumvit 107 (StA107) St. Andrew’s International School Bangkok (StAB) St. Andrew’s International School, Green Valley (StAGV) St. Stephen’s International School, Bangkok & Khao Yai Campuses (SIS) The Regent’s International School Bangkok (REGB) Traill International School (TIS) Wellington College International School Bangkok (WCIS) new


British International School Hanoi (BISHN) British International School Ho Chi Minh City (BISHM) British Vietnamese International School Hanoi (BVISHN) British Vietnamese International School Ho Chi Minh City (BVISHM) Renaissance International School, Saigon (RIS) The ABC International School (ABCIS)

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33



Cambridge Assessment Singapore . Fieldwork Education . GCSEPod . GL Education .


Consilium Education . Educational Success Partners (ESP) . Exscitec . ISC Research . Karen Ardley Associates . Sunridge Associates .


EquipMySchool .


Teacher's Wealth . Warwick Mann International .


Cezars Kitchen .


Furnware Singapore . Hussey Asia-Pacific . S+B UK . Virco .


Independent Schools Inspectorate . Penta International . Education Development Trust .


Blue Sky Education . Britannica Digital Learning . Century Tech . CHQ Group . Derventio Education . Engage . Education Perfect . new Faria Education Group . Finalsite . Firefly Learning . Impero Software . iSAMS . Planet eStream . Renaissance Learning . SOCS . Superloop CyberHound . Unifrog . WCBS International .


SchoolHouse Creatives . Pret-a-Portrait .


Early Excellence . Let’s Think in English . Musical Futures International . Real Training . School Leaders Training . TES . Veema Education .


Drums for Schools . Charanga . D-Challenge . Distinguished Concerts International NY .


International Educational Psychology Services .


24 categories, 83 members... Thank you to our Affiliate Members for supporting high quality British-international style education and a warm welcome to our new Affiliate Member!


APD Book Services . Collins . Mallory International . Pearson


Anthony Millard Consulting . Compass Education Consultancy . LSC Education . RSAcademics . Schrole Group . Search Associates . TIC Recruitment . True Teaching .


Viristar .


EduCare Learning . International Child Protection Advisors .


Ability Expeditions . Rift Valley Adventures . Education Perfect .


CES Holdings . Early Years Resources . TTS Group .


White Canvas .


HARTsportMusic . . Dawsons


DawsonsFocus MusicAsia . . Sail in Asia . Swim Life International . Football Trying Rugby (Shanghai) .


American Athletic Scholarship .


Modern Teaching Aids .


University of Warwick, UK .

THE FOBISIAN: June 2020, Term 3, Issue 33



Membership Handbook & Directory 2019-2020 Term 3, April 2020 A Guide to the Federation of British International Schools in Asia