Global politics, worldwide environmental issues and dramatic population movements across continents have become part of our everyday lives. If we want our children to grow up to be innovators and leaders in positive global change, then an international mindset is a must.

It can be argued that particular curriculum types may be better for developing in-depth subject knowledge, however, IB leads the way for independent inquiry and international mindedness.

An IB education is unique because of its rigorous academic and personal standards. IB programmes challenge students to excel not only in their studies but also in their personal growth. The IB aims to inspire a lifelong quest for learning hallmarked by empathy. The IB gathers a worldwide community of supporters who celebrate our common humanity and who share a belief that education can help to build a better world.

Globalisation and increased population mobility have led to communities becoming melting pots for a colourful array of cultures in schools. This is a wonderful opportunity for future learners.

As we enter the final stage of IB authorization at AISPP, we prepare for our verification visit. We have taken some time to clarify upon our identity as a developing school and what is fundamental.

An important aspect for us is being international and instilling this wider perspective in our students.

Internationalism, being international, global citizenship or international mindedness, is a topic worthy of reflection as it forms the basis of our educational philosophy.

The aim of all international schools that utilise the IB programmes is to develop internationally minded people who, recognizing their common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet, help to create a better and more peaceful world.

IB schools strive to instill the core elements of the learner attributes, whereby learners strive to become inquirers, knowledgeable, thinkers, communicators, principled, open-minded, caring, risk-takers, balanced and reflective.

These represent a range of human capacities and responsibilities that go beyond intellectual development and academic success.

They imply a wider social responsibility; a commitment to help all members of the school community learn to respect themselves, others and the world around them.

All schools are fundamentally the same, but yet very different. Each takes on its own identity and emphasis, so what exactly do we mean by international mindedness? For us international mindedness means understanding, respecting and valuing different cultures, embracing diversity and knowing that different perspectives have a great deal to offer and we value this as we collaborate.

International mindedness enables us to work in harmony and to benefit from a wide range of knowledge and experience. It promotes respect, encourages collaboration and sees our students develop high levels of empathy and compassion.

The various signs of an internationally minded person generally include:

  • knowledge, understanding and appreciation of different cultures
  • increased self-awareness (EQ)
  • increased empathy (EQ)
  • ability to collaborate with peers from different backgrounds
  • deepening knowledge and understanding of global issues
  • ability to see themselves as socially responsible, global citizens
  • various language skills

Children are growing up in an increasingly interconnected world, where overseas travel, expat life and multinational businesses have become the norm. Even if people are based in one country for most of their working lives, they will be working with people from all around the world and will need to be able to collaborate effectively across cultures.

The workforce and industries are actively seeking out multilingual employees; not only for roles in multinational companies, but increasingly for positions within industries such as healthcare, law enforcement, education, customer service and social services, where employees deal with people on a daily basis.

Education is an act of hope and light in the face of an uncertain (but exciting) future. An IB education calls forth the very best in students and educators alike. The IB believes that together we can help to prepare students for living and working in a complex, highly interconnected world.

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