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Top content from across the community, hand-picked by us.

Roundtable Video - Addressing Geopolitical Conflict at International Schools - Russia's invasion of Ukraine
Please find a detailed discussion with Rob Ford, Director of the Heritage International School in Chisinau, Moldova as he share with us what it has been like to be near the frontlines of this invasion, what it was like in the early days and how they are coping with the varied challenges that are affecting students and the community.  This conversation was supported by Doug Walker, Chief Programs Director at Mercy Family Center and Meredith Herold, Senior Consultant at Penbrae International Consulting where they addressed various coping strategies that schools can employ within their own schools and communities as this war continues.

View the Recording Here
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Event Comment in Addressing Geopolitical Conflict with Students at International Schools - Roundtable Discussion
Those attending have raised the following questions for discussion regarding their mental health challenges related to Russia's invasion of Ukraine:

Anxiety about the impact on the rest of the world and concern for family and friends in the Ukraine. Russian students' concern

- Most of our students are from East Asia and are less affected by the conflict, making it harder for our European students
- Displacement of the masses and its future.
- We have taken in several Ukrainian refugees and we worry about how best to support them.
- PTSD, Transition, Loss, Grief, fear of Unknown, etc..
- Boarding schools with both Russian and Ukrainian students

Emergency Preparedness - Tabletop Exercise 1 of 4 - Threat to School Transportation
Please find the recording and presentation from the first of 4 tabletop exercises being hosted by the School Collaborative to help schools prepare for a variety of emergency they may face. This session was focused on a Threat to School Transportation.  Participants worked through a variety of scenarios as if they were addressing a real emergency.  In doing so, they address the 7 core components of emergency preparedness: 

- Assessment
- Mitigation
- Preparation
- Response
- Recovery
- Alerting
- Communication

Please join us for one of our next sessions below.  You can register here.

- Human Created Threat - March 15th
- Natural Disaster Threat - April 7th
- Unknown Threat / Hazard - May 17th
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Emergency Preparedness Tabletop Exercises
For nearly two years international schools have been focused on COVID-19 and mitigation efforts to manage the pandemic and the impact it has had on schools, students, staff and school communities.  COVID-19 remains a challenge, however schools need to continue to prepare for a variety of emergency they may face.  As such, The School Collaborative, in cooperation with Clearpath Alerts and Together School is offering a series of four tabletop training sessions for schools to help them with their preparation.  These sessions will address:

Threat to School Transportation - February 15th


Human Created Threat - March 15th


Natural Disaster Threat - April 7th


Unknown Threat / Hazard - May 17th


Each session will be limited to 10 participants.  Participants will work through 3 scenarios in small groups addressing the 7 core components of emergency preparedness

Assessment


Mitigation


Preparation


Response


Recovery


Alerting


Communication


Participants will leave with an insights on emergency preparedness as well as processes and resources that exist for them to utilize.  

Please Register HERE

Facilitators:

Michael Johnson - CEO Clearpath Alerts

Mike consults U.S. and international schools to build and maintain robust emergency preparedness, risk, and safety programs through dynamic technology solutions and consulting services. As CEO of Clearpath Alerts, Mike created the Clearpath EPM Prepare My School asynchronous training courses. With an extensive career in military, law enforcement and security services, Mike now specializes in working with institutions (educational sector, non-profits, and NGOs), corporations, and live event organizers to build resilience into their operations. 

 

 

 

Kevin Lloyd - Co-Founder of Together School Ltd

Kevin has working with International Schools for the past 6 years. He is a co-founder of The School Collaborative, the hosts of this webinar and of Together School, a company focused on improving international school’s safety and security as well as engaging the school’s community. Together School brings systems, processes and people at a school all together in one App providing relevant and critical information to the right person at the right time.

Prior to working with International Schools, Kevin has had a career in Enterprise Communications developing products and solutions with Nokia, Ericsson, Sony Ericsson and Siemens Enterprise Communications. 
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Webinar Series Child Protection at International Schools - Child Protection Training Overview - Part 3 of 4
In this webinar, participants gained insights to Child Protection training strategies and requirements needed to meet the needs of all school community members. From leaders and teachers to support staff, parents, and students, participants understood learner needs, training content, and certification. This webinar covered Level 1,2,3 certification as well as training designed for specific stakeholder groups. Participants received handouts and a complimentary seat to ChildSafeguarding.com 

Key Takeaways:

Understanding of the different learning needs of stakeholder groups at a school


Understanding the different types of Child Protection training available


A copy of the Child Protection training guide


A complimentary seat on ChildSafeguarding.com


Here are the slides from this session Child Protection Training for All Members of the School Community - The School Collaborative.pdf

The webinar recording is here.

Here is an overview of the focus areas for a schools Child Protection program - Child-Protection-Responsibilities-for-a-School-ChildSafeguarding.com_.pdf

Special thanks to our facilitator for this session - Matt Harris, Ed.D., Co-Founder and CEO of Childsafeguarding.com
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Webinar Recording - Restarting School Trips - Insights to Challenges that Schools can Expect
School trips are invaluable for the students’ education allowing them to broaden their horizons and learn in new environments. With borders reopening and international travel steadily returning many schools are now looking to restart travel. While travel is becoming easier again there are still many factors to consider when taking pupils abroad to ensure you’ve mitigated any foreseeable risks.

Experts from Together School and World Travel Protection discussed challenges that schools will be facing when they return to travel. See the full recording and get the powerpoint presentation for your school.
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In this session Dr. Matt Harris discussed the elements and structure of a robust Child Protection policy. Participants heard best practices for creating a CP Policy that fits within the school culture, meets standards and requirements, and engages members of the school community. 
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Behavioural Issues on School Buses and the Means to Manage them
Appropriate behaviour on School Buses is a concern for any school that is operating a school bus service.  Issues related to operational safety, student wellbeing and child safeguarding are among the major areas of concern faced by schools.  Please share with us your concerns that your school is facing and how you are managing behaviour on your school buses.  Please respond to our short survey as well.

Thank you!
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Webinar Series Child Protection at International Schools - An Overview of Child Protection - Part 1 of 4
Please join our discussion with Dr. Matt Harris where we will discuss Child Protection Responsibilities for a School, which outlines all the areas of focus needed for a school to consider when addressing Child Protection. This will include everything from physical security to policies to personnel and reporting structures. Participants will learn about each of the 12 elements and how they are interconnected. Participants will receive handouts to guide them in using this information at their school.

Key Takeaways:

- Understanding of the key areas of Child Protection for a school
- Understanding how the key areas work together as part of an overall Child Protection program
- A copy of the Overview
- A complimentary seat on ChildSafeguarding.com
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Travel is a part of regular operations at International Schools - whether that’s staff travelling from their home country to the school, or students going on international trips and this brings inherent risks.  It is a legal requirement with significant implications that risks associated with travel are mitigated.  Now the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has created a framework to guide organisations on managing travel risks, which was released in September. 

While travel risk management has been a key part of an organisation's legal, compliance and duty of care responsibilities for some time, this is the first globally recognised standard. Meeting these standards will showcase your school's commitment to traveller safety, help you stand out as an employer and school of choice, and provide peace of mind to your travel managers, staff and families that you have mitigated all foreseeable risk.

Please see the attached document for insights on how to mitigate travel risk.

To book a one on one meeting with experts from World Travel Protection to learn more about this ISO Standard or explore your schools risk exposure, please click BOOK MEETING

WTP_Returning to Travel School - Read-Only.pdf
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Webinar - Travel Risk Management for International Schools - A new ISO Standard
Travel is a part of regular operations at International Schools - whether that’s staff travelling from their home country to the school, or students going on international trips and this brings inherent risks.  It is a legal requirement with significant implications that risks associated with travel are mitigated.  Now the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has created a framework to guide organisations on managing travel risks, which was released in September. 

While travel risk management has been a key part of an organisation's legal, compliance and duty of care responsibilities for some time, this is the first globally recognised standard. Meeting these standards will showcase your school's commitment to traveller safety, help you stand out as an employer and school of choice, and provide peace of mind to your travel managers, staff and families that you have mitigated all foreseeable risk.

Join Director of Distribution and Partnerships from World Travel Protection, Alex Twiggs, and Regional Security Director, Frank Harrison, as they explains what is covered by ISO 31030 and the benefits of following the standard.  
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Returning to Normal in COVID Times at International Schools - Student Mental Health and Wellbeing
As students at #Internationalschools return to in person learning during #COVID-19, student #mentalhealth and #studentwellbeing is a major concern. See valuable insights from mental health experts. https://bit.ly/3wGIcha
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CDC Guidance for COVID-19 Prevention in K-12 Schools
Guidance on COVID-19 Prevention in K-12 Schools
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International Student Travel, Trips and Events - Guidance from World Travel Protection
As part of our recent Webinar Series - Returning to Normal in COVID Times at International Schools – Kevin Lloyd of The School Collaborative held a discussion with Ben Cooper of World Travel Protection to address a variety of concepts on how schools can support student travel, trips and events, including:  
- Duty of Care for schools
- Insurance and supporting resources
- Risk assessments
- Awareness of changing environments during travel
- Communications
- Bus travel

Please visit the post for more details.
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Best practices within the school community includes the utilization of a Campus Resiliency Team (CRT) or sometimes referred to as a Crisis Management Team or Emergency Action Committee, etc. This group, regardless of its title, not only convenes in response to potential or actual crisis or emergency situations, but also meets on a regular basis to plan and discuss overall safety, security and emergency preparedness policies and strategy that will lead to a more resilient organization. This wider group of stakeholders serves as a “force multiplier” for the direct hire employees charged with managing these programs on a daily basis and assists the campus directors in determining that the right assets, resources and emphasis are placed for all life-safety and business continuity programs. Convening of this group also allows the risk management personnel to seek “buy-in” from other stakeholders early in the process of strategy and policy development, making successful implementation more likely. A regular, recurring schedule of CRT meetings should be established where risk is the main topic.  Items of discussion may include safety, security, emergency preparedness, child protection, emergency communication, policy and procedure development, mitigation strategies, training and drill regimens, risk elements of off-campus travel or after-hours activities or special event planning among other topics.

See original post for more.
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The fourth of our series on Returning to Normal in COVID times at international schools.

At international school opportunities for international trips is a key component of the experience offered.  Whether class trips, sporting events or other competitions, the opportunity to travel has been a normal, expected and important offering.  COVID-19 has halted this opportunity for students.  Going forward, it is expected these opportunities will resume, however with new challenges.

Our webinar today will interview Ben Cooper of World Travel Protection who will explore implications and share insights that schools can consider as they endeavour to offer international experiences to their students, whether hosting events on campus or sending students abroad.  

📅 Please Register Here for This Webinar

Ben Cooper - International Travel Risk Management Expert - World Travel Protection EMEA

World Travel Protection’s Ben Cooper’s responds when asked what he does for a living is “I work with an amazing company that gets people home when they are ill, injured or unsafe overseas.” 

Ben was drawn to work in travel risk management by his fascination with geopolitics, which plays an important part in assessing travel risks. The majority of Ben’s career has been spent supporting organisations with projects in remote, high risk or logistically challenging environments, from offshore wind farms and oil rigs to onshore remote research projects and mine sites.

As Head of Sales & Commercial across Europe, the Middle East and Africa, Ben works closely with clients from the company’s UK base. According to Ben, WTP’s clients come from a diverse range of businesses, including universities, security firms, travel management agencies, business continuity advisors and human resources consultants. 

Working closely with clients means Ben is always managing unusual and exciting projects, often with complex logistical arrangements. Whether a film crew in a COVID-19 environment or university students travelling to high-risk locations; various layers of support and risk mitigation are involved, for travel and at the locations.
 
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Returning to Normal in COVID times – Staff Recruitment, Mobility and Travel Implications at International Schools
The second of a 4 webinars addressing Returning Schools to Normal During COVID Times. COVID-19 will impact international schools including its impact on staffing – recruitment, mobility and travel is significant.
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It’s hard for students to learn if they don’t feel known and protected. Security is equally about emotional as much as physical safety.

In these days of school insecurity, we need to address the needs of the whole child. This includes balancing the curriculum with both academic and social-emotional learning to teach students to recognize and control their emotions as well as to feel empathy for others.
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Considerations and Strategies to Mitigate the Impact of COVID-19 at International Schools
Introduction

COVID-19 will be with us for the foreseeable future and its impact on international schools will continue. The virus itself is evolving, the science related to the virus, to vaccines, and to testing is also evolving. The evolution of is global, however mitigation needs to be done at a local level. 

A current understanding of the situation with the virus will enable schools to implement up to date mitigation strategies. These strategies should incorporate vaccinations, screening, process and procedures as well as communications. 

See the considerations and insights shared by our panel.
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Emerging trends in Education Since COVID19
Has COVID-19 caused schools, inadvertently, to take a step away from the structures of yesterday and make a giant leap forward for our future education? Emerging indicative trends for 2021 include:

• Flexibility in school models and online delivery
• Microlearning
• Wellbeing of staff and students
• Bridging the Gap
• Twilight Insets Professional Development

Read our full article (link)
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Webinar - Returning to Normal - COVID-19 Mitigation at International Schools
As schools endeavour to provide as near normal educational experience for children as possible, moving forward and out of the global pandemic it remains uncertain how long this will take and if or when COVID-19 will cease to be an issue.  With that in mind, providing as normal and unrestricted schooling experience as possible is vital for the educational, mental and physical development of children.

Science and technology have made significant advancements during the pandemic that can contribute to providing a normal, positive educational experience. Included in this are vaccines, tests, equipment and processes that when combined can serve to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 significantly. Our panel will address the tools and procedures that schools can consider as part of their own mitigation efforts.  Specifically, we will address:

Vaccines – limitations and considerations for an effective policy in your school

Screening – types of testing that we can expect, other tools that can be used how to implement as part of your schools’ procedures

Procedures and Processes – insights as to supporting processes / procedures and related technology schools might consider

The importance of effective communication and documentation to create understanding, buy-in, and confidence within your community 

Panelists:

Dr David Teo – Regional Medical Director Asia, International SOS
Colin Brown – Founder Nex.D, COO Skoolbo, Edtech investor
Peter Slater – Vice President, Operations and Health, Safety and Environment – GEMS Education
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Round Table Discussion - Preparedness at Schools – Planning avoids Future Disruption.
The Pandemic caught everyone unprepared and has highlighted the importance to have an emergency plan. As we return students to classrooms around the world let us be prepared for any kind of emergency or crisis that schools may face. In order to be properly prepared, a school should follow the 7 steps in Emergency Planning Management. <br style="background-color:#ffffff;color:#3b4043;font-size:13px;">Prepare Alert Communicate Respond Recover Assess Mitigate  Join our discussion with the former federal law enforcement agent and CEO of Clearpath EPM Mike Johnson. He will guide all participants through these steps to be prepared for the future and help schools avoid possible disruption. 

As this is a Round Table session we will limit attendance to a maximum of 8 schools. 

Please RSVP if you intend to join.

 
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Transportation Interview with Operations Manager from an International School in China
Interview with Carlos Guerrero

Carlos outlines the challenges of normal or Pre-Covid operations called for busses to run with full rider capacity and have the most optimal routes (fewer routes). Now that model has been turned upside down and the school is often required to operate at half capacity or less and manage the difficulty in balancing fluctuations in ridership. How he responded to manage and eventually succeed in this changing environment was to embrace technology. There are three areas Carlos highlighted where technology has helped: Safety, Efficiency and Communications. .
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Transportation Round Table Technology to Improve Safety, Efficiency and Communications
COVID-19 has strained resources at schools due to changing regulations, schedules impacting routes and requirements for the health and safety of staff and students. Technology has been the enabler for schools to deliver a quality transportation service despite these disruptors. A command-and-control centre providing an overview of the bus operations combined with an app has allowed schools to respond effectively. 
 
Join our discussion with Carlos Guerrero, International School Transportation and Operational Risk expert in program development, policy writing, and crisis response planning related to student travel, campus safety, child protection, and medical response. He will share insights on how technology can help to: 

•    improve safety through documenting and sharing
•    create efficiency through cost saving tools including route planning 
•    support engagement by communicating relevant information such as schedule and procedural changes. 
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Preparing your School
Schools around the world are looking to get back to a pre-COVID operating environment. No one is sure how that environment may look, but one thing is for certain, schools will once again face the same kinds of threats and hazards they have always encountered. To overcome these threats, hazards and other disruptions, schools will need to be prepared with an emergency action plan, or better yet, a robust Emergency Planning Management (emergency preparedness) program.
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