From the Deputy Director Academic

Reflections on my first year at ISM

My first year at ISM has been an interesting one. All staff and students are wearing masks, we have some students on Distance Learning, new protocols and no residential trips.
While I know that my experience of ISM is not what it can be, I have enjoyed getting to know the students, staff and parents and I have been so impressed with all the hard work that goes on throughout the year.
I would like to share with you the key areas of strength but also of development that I feel are worthy of mention and reflection:

  • Hybrid teaching and learning

There is no denying that the last two years have tested us. However, I have been absolutely blown away by the adaptability of the staff and the hybrid and Distance Learning programmes that have been offered this year.
Teaching students both in school and at home at the same time is no mean feat, but staff have worked extremely hard to ensure that learning continues even when the health situation makes it challenging. Students have also been working hard and avoiding distractions at home, so thank you parents for keeping them focused then!

  • Resilience

Both staff and students have shown incredible resilience, dealing with constant changes, amendments to the government protocols and at times a lack of routine. However, as mentioned above, learning has continued to take place.
Resilience is not easy, but in the face of challenge that is when we truly learn, develop and ensure that we are ready and able to face the world once we leave school.

  • Attendance

Although the Hybrid learning programme has been successful, it does not and cannot replace learning in the classroom. We cannot deny that more progress will take place when the teacher is able to support and direct students in the classroom and in person.
Attendance is a crucial part of any school but also of a child’s development, and that needs to be taken extremely seriously. I hope that next academic year this continues to be a priority for all students and parents.

  • Staff Professional Development

Staff at ISM are committed to their professional development, and it is my responsibility in my role to monitor this and to ensure that all staff have access to the appropriate development and training. This is something that I will continue to develop next academic year with the support of the new Director and the Education Committee. Well done to all staff for their reflections on their Goals this year and their hard work in the classroom.

  • King’s collaboration

During the AGM, we highlighted the main collaborations that took place with King’s. Considering the health crisis, our first year has been a huge success. A lot more collaborations have taken place than parents may realise, and we have forged some strong relationships between King’s staff and ISM, as well as between students. As an example, the French debating competition last week was an excellent example of the collegiality, professionalism and learning that we can gain from such work. I cannot wait for the continuing development of this collaboration next academic year.

I look forward to updating you regularly next year on the professional development opportunities of our staff and how we ensure that the best teaching and learning is taking place in the classroom.

Please do make the best of any learning opportunity that may come your way in the summer, and have a lovely holiday!

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