One concern for parents when looking into the international school market is whether or not a school is ACCREDITED. This is a valid concern because accreditation is a way that schools are evaluated and shown to be of at least a basic standard of quality in their educational programs. Here are a number of organizations that international schools look to for accreditation:
In Djibouti, when we talk about ‘accreditation’ it is important to compare the French educational track to the North American educational track. There is a significant difference between a North American international private school and the French international school system. Here are a few of the differences:
- Uniform curriculum across schools
- Accreditation (inspection) from governmental agency (ministry of education)
- Overseen by government (ministry of foreign affairs and ministry of education)
- BAC exam is the gateway to higher education and is administered by the ministry of education
- Track based programs during HS
North American System:
- Credit based formula for graduation
- Individual differences between schools and districts across states and territories.
- Accreditation from independent organizations (mostly private organizations or businesses).
- Overseen by a board of directors locally, or by an international education organization, or both.
- HS diploma is the gateway to higher education in combination with other placement exams like SAT or ACT that are administered by private organizations (not government).
And of course, many cultural differences for teachers, parents, and children
Are there differences that you have seen between North American and French education? Feel free to post or send me information on your ideas.
At ISD, accreditation is a very important process. For new schools like ours, this usually takes a number of years to complete. However, because of the blended learning model we are using for upper grades we will be able to offer a basic North American accreditation for students looking to go on to higher education.
About BLENDED LEARNING: check back next week for more info on this very interesting topic!