“In the beginning, we were doubtful about how much internationalism we would bring in, but as the programme gained momentum, we found, much to our surprise, that many international partners were excited to work with our school.” 

Sudeep KC, Headteacher of Arjun English Boarding School, Gulmi is pleased with the progress brought by the International School Award (ISA) programme in their school. The ISA journey was undoubtedly challenging for them, but it was an enriching experience for the whole school. 

Sudeep and his team took a big decision to embed an international dimension in their teaching pattern and school activities through the ISA programme for the first time. He shared, “Initially, it was a challenge to prepare action plans within our curriculum and figure out where and how we can integrate the internationalism. We would spend hours discussing and planning in our staff room. We had never done this before. But, with the workshops and support from the British Council’s School Ambassadors, we were able to understand the context more and come up with interesting ideas for developing connections with schools from around the world.” 

“Throughout the programme phase, our teachers and students were always on their toes, gathering information, jotting down ideas on charts, planning excursions and activities to collaborate with their peers and acquaintances in other countries,” he added. 

The school with its involvement in the ISA programme, developed many international connections with schools from the UK, India, Pakistan, Taiwan, and Tunisia. They collaborated with international students and teachers to exchange their ideas, cultures, languages and much more. They also integrated most of their activities into the curriculum to give students an experience of a global learning environment.

“The engagement of students in the ISA programme has enhanced their thinking skills. It has motivated them to think out of the box and express their ideas and innovations with teachers and friends from different countries. Through the ISA, it brought students and teachers from around the world close despite the physical distance,” said Sudeep. 

“The most significant impact of the ISA programme for our school was deep involvement of teachers, students, and even parents in the school activities. They worked in unison, encouraged each other’s participation, and enjoyed doing the activities. Previously, the activities were limited to school only but with the ISA, we have found an international platform to exchange our activities right at our doorstep,” he smiled and added.

The British Council’s International School Award (ISA) is a global accreditation scheme that supports and recognizes schools for incorporating an international dimension in their teaching. The accreditation process support schools to develop action plans and deliver lessons according to the plan. The programme encourages partnerships and collaboration between schools – both internationally and locally.  The ISA is a part of the Connecting Classrooms through Global Learning Programme which is co-funded by the British Council and Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office. This global programme is currently being implemented in 34 countries. Across Nepal, over 60 schools were involved in the 2018-19 cycle and over 300 schools participated in the 2019-20 programme.