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CAS Students Build Shelters and Sleep Outside to Support Moroccan Earthquake Victims and Raise Funds for Rebuilding




The Principal’s, primary and secondary corners (all merged this week!)

Community spirit, learning and future thinking!

This week’s community spirit celebrations have to start with the very successful service learning activity that took place on Tuesday evening on our campus. Grade 11 CAS (Creativity, Activity, Service) students planned an overnight stay on campus involving 21 students building basic shelters & then sleeping in them in the school yard. As shared in our previous #whatISThebuzz, the aim was to show solidarity with those impacted by the recent earthquake in the High Atlas in Morocco and to raise money for EDUCATION FOR ALL MOROCCO LTD and their major rebuilding work to their six boarding houses that were destroyed. Students also cooked and served two meals and then took a whole-school assembly (and then went to lessons!) after about 2 hours of sleep! Many thanks to all involved, students and staff, for their wonderful initiative and support. We hope to report back on the total amount raised very soon.

banner for education for an inclusive future

This week’s #whatISThebuzz comes to you from Dublin where Mrs Pattinson, Mr Fretwell, Mrs Summerton, Mr Hunt and myself are attending the annual regional IB Conference. Amongst many inspiring keynote presentations, we would like to invite you to explore the following topics:

The Festival of Hope

We were awed and inspired by the presentation led by IBDP students (equivalent to our Grade 11 and 12 students at IST) who have been actively participating in the Festival of Hope launched last year by the International Baccalaureate, inviting our young generation to become change agents, and create the world they want to live in. Our students at IST get involved in many initiatives to make a difference (the Morocco EFA fundraising event is just one of many other examples), and we hope to continue to inspire and guide them to take part in more meaningful actions. We showed secondary students this video during their first week at school in September - why not watch it as a family, and have a conversation about what change might look like for your child(ren)? 

The learning pit

James Nottingham talks about how our students / children need to go through the learning pit in order to develop the skills that will help them deal with challenging situations, be it in their learning or personal life. This aligns beautifully with our recent PYP presentation to primary parents on the importance of showing resilience. We want to encourage our students to make mistakes, experience difficulty and a sense of failure so that they can learn from these situations, and develop a ‘let’s figure this out’ approach that will stay with them way beyond their time at school.  As educators and parents, we need to ask them thought-provoking questions, what they are going to do to get out of the pit, and give them meaningful feedback they will learn from and take on board for that ‘next time’. 


We ‘d also like to share some of the wonderful work by Dr Sue Roffey and the Growing Great Schools Worldwide organisation. Her circle solutions approach is renowned  globally for successfully helping build communities and a sense of belonging within schools, and as a fantastic tool for our students’ social and emotional learning. Today in Dublin, she presented her ASPIRE principles, and how Agency, Safety, Positivity, Inclusive belonging, Respect and Equity are foundational to our students’ and children’s wellbeing.

Spending two days with internationally acclaimed authors, educators and researchers, connecting with colleagues from other IB international schools, and engaging in conversations around what the future looks like for our students / children is a wonderful opportunity to reflect on what we do at IST, and what some of our next steps might be; this relates to our mission to nurture lifelong learners and reminds us that we are all learning together. We want to continue to promote the learning conversations, and will be looking at hosting some coffee mornings inviting parents onto campus to discuss, learn about, and uncover some of the fascinating topics that guide us in international schools, and inform our future thinking. More details soon about dates for your diaries!

After the  wonderful 50th anniversary celebrations by our friends at DST last weekend, this week’s focus turned to the preparations of our Festival International. Teachers, students’ Friends of IST and parents are all working hard behind the scenes to get everything in place for this to be a day of celebrating our community,  what makes us who we are, and honouring our various cultures. If you haven’t signed up yet’ please do so by clicking here. We look forward to seeing you all on campus next Friday!

Have a wonderful weekend,

Rachel Leonard, Alison Pattinson and NIck Fretwell

IST Principal, Head of Primary and Head of Secondary


@IST next week? 

Next Week

Monday 9 - Wednesday 11 October

Backyard Theatre Ensemble visit

Wednesday 11 October

Primary Introduction Conferences

For your diaries - save the date!

Friday 13 October

Festival International (International Day)

WE NEED YOU! - please let us know how you can take part and save the date!

We are looking forward to welcoming the whole community on to our site to get together with friends, new and old, and celebrate the diversity of our community! With food, stalls and entertainment from all over the world it should be great fun! See all the details here, where there is also a sign-up sheet, and a call for help! Do please put the date in your calendar!


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