In June 2019 St. Michael’s International School achieved accreditation with the International Primary Curriculum (IPC.) The visiting team identified five areas of excellent practice:
- A clear focus on improving learning
- A shared vision about the kinds of children we are helping to develop
- International mindedness
- The significance and development of Knowledge, Skills and Understanding
- The IPC Learning Process
Accreditation with the IPC demonstrates that our curriculum is both rigorous and developmental and sets St. Michael’s International School apart as a truly learning-focused school. The award of accreditation is a wonderful tribute to the hard work, dedication and focus of the entire school community and makes St. Michael’s the first school in Japan with this prestigious mark of excellence for our innovative and internationally-minded curriculum.
As the first international school in the Kansai region to be awarded joint accreditation by both the Council of International Schools (CIS) and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) in 2007, our ten year joint reaccreditation was achieved in 2017.
In reaching their decision, CIS and WASC took into account the Visiting Team’s commendations which were based on evidence of excellent and effective alignment with the accreditation standards for both CIS and WASC.
“Of particular note is the school’s considerable progress in developing a conceptual framework of international mindedness. Further, the St. Michael’s community is to be congratulated for the thorough and deliberate process undertaken to create the school’s values statement.”
Other strengths include the following:
- The school’s Mission to provide “a positive culture of excellence and a caring family community” is implemented by the staff who have created a warm and safe environment; one that supports the academic, social, physical and emotional needs of all students.
- The Board of Trustees and Head of School have developed increased levels of financial stability and expertise within the organization, along with greater financial accountability through appointment of external auditors.
- The Head of School in collaboration with the Senior Leadership Team has built several systems to support teaching and learning. Among these are the staff appraisal system, the International School Assessment tests (ISAs) and the introduction of the International Primary Curriculum.
- The school has developed a consistent ‘language of learning’ for its staff and students as outlined in the Teaching and Learning Policy.
- The Student Leadership Council and the teacher facilitator work together to seek ways to take action on issues that make a positive difference at SMIS.
- The Health and Safety Committee works proactively in enhancing health and safety across the school.
In November 2020 St. Michael’s became an accredited member of the Council of British International Schools (COBIS.) This is a globally recognized external validation of the great work our school does, accreditation with COBIS is linked to our CIS accreditation which are both carried out against robust international standards. As a COBIS school, we are part of a global-wide network of educators and gain considerable insight into our progress benchmarked against the best British and international practice.
Aware of the value of networking with school’s in the region particularly during this challenging time of the pandemic, St. Michael’s International School is a long standing member of the East Asia Region Council of International Schools (EARCOS) and a founding member of the Japan Council of International Schools (JCIS.)
Partnerships in these many different forms allows us to engage in a critical evaluation of our effectiveness as educators as well as develop our curriculum to meet the needs of all of our students.