Saturday, 25 February 2017- SchoolAdvisor.my, Malaysia No.1 guide to international and private schools hosted its first ever forum on international schools. The forum was intended to help parents in choosing the best education path for their children. There were a total of 32 parents that attended the exciting forum with their children.
The international school forum featured Mr Brendan Lanza, the founding principal of UCSI International School and is currently the CEO of UniComms, under the UCSI group. He is currently doing his PhD programme in Islamic Finance.
School Advisor also had the privilege of having Mr Andrew Dalton as one of the panelist. He is the chairman of the Association of International Malaysian Schools (AIMS) and is currently the principal of The International School @ Park City. He brought with him a wealth of international school leadership having worked in world-class schools across Asia and the Middle-East.
From left to right: Mr Brendan Lanza, the founding principal of UCSI International School and Mr Andrew Dalton, the Chairman of AIMS.
Through their immense experience in education, both Mr Lanza and Mr Dalton answered some key questions in the forum that were central for parents that considered an international education for their child but do not have sufficient information to make a move.
An interesting point brought up by Mr Lanza is the unique feature of international schools that does not compare a child’s ability and capabilities with others. Each student is assessed individually to measure his or her strengths and needs. The school will then tailor lessons suited to that child’s interest so that they can excel in studies. He added, “this clearly works to the advantage of students as they continue to produce outstanding results”.
When asked about the indicator of a good international school, Mr Dalton pointed out background checks on every staff member of the school is a very important factor. “Parents entrust schools to take care of their children, eight to nine hours a day and so, it is the school’s responsibility to provide a safe and nurturing environment to each and every child”. As the chairperson of AIMS, he understands that every parent worry about the cost of sending their child to an international school. “The fact is, the cost of international schools is always on the rise and so you need to prepare a head of time as an international education is a massive long-term commitment.” When choosing a school, he advised parents to study the school’s fees over the past 5 years to identify the pattern of increment. If the school has consistently increased its fees by 5%, parents can safely deduce the cost of sending their child to an international school in the coming years.
The forum also featured a question and answer session for parents. Mike Thomas, a parent with a 4-year-old daughter asked the panel how international schools teach children manners and social skills to which both panellist agree that the only way to do is to ‘lead by example’. “As a principal, I greet every student I see and I expect them to greet me back,” said Mr Dalton.
We hope that through this forum, parents have a better understanding of international schools and all its advantages. This is the first of many School Advisor’s event as we wish to inspire parents to make the best decision for their children for a brighter future.