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ISB has created a new strategic plan every few years throughout its history, and we now have a new set of strategic focus areas to ensure the school is providing an excellent international education best suited to our community and the vibrant city of Beijing in this era. 

Our new Strategic Focus Areas have strong relations to our aspirational Mission and Vision statements that are lived by ISB students, families, faculty and staff every day. Strategic planning is conducted to anticipate changing circumstances, ensure relevance to the community, define and clarify ISB’s values, and make sure ISB is known for and is making the most of its strengths.  

Beijing has changed immeasurably in the 40+ years since ISB was founded. The city and its international population continue to develop at a breathtaking pace. The families choosing ISB as the ideal school for their children are different from those doing so 10 years ago, five years ago, even two years ago. 

We anticipate this pace of change continuing and it is essential that ISB plans for the change.

Why go through a strategic review process?

ISB Strategic Plan

For this most recent review, we conducted a consultation in the 2021-2022 school year to establish what ISB families (current and prospective), faculty and staff, and alumni value most and where they think the school should head from here. We asked, who are we? What programs best meet our needs? How do we operate most effectively and efficiently? 

Here are some of the things ISB community members told us they valued most:

High-quality teaching and learning

Giving students opportunities to discover and follow their passions

The right balance between challenge and joy in academics and co-curricular activity

Strong peer relationships

Remaining an international school

Celebrating our history and our future successes

ISB has consistently focused on all these things throughout its history, but the new Strategic Focus Areas are a roadmap for the future of the school that consolidates our efforts and resources into three main focus areas based on the above. Here you can read about these three areas, followed by ISB news exemplifying how we’re putting each focus into practice.

1. Our core: challenging and joyful learning. We will keep focusing on quality academic programming especially literacy plus science, technology, engineering, the arts, and math (STEAM), ensuring appropriate challenge for ALL learners so that every student is achieving their potential in their courses. We will also further strengthen the pipeline of great teachers coming to ISB. 

Strategic Plan Focus Area 1

A collage of photos of ISB staff taking PD

The best learners never stop learning. Here’s a video about ISB’s professional development programs, which help ensure teachers and staff are providing tip-top tuition.

2. Use ISB’s resources to empower students to purpose and compassion. School is about so much more than academics! We want to keep ensuring our students have integrity, strength of character, and that they are healthy socially and emotionally. To that end, we want each student to find at least one academic area and one co-curricular pursuit they are passionate about and in which they can excel. Our policy over the next few years will be based on making sure students can sample real-world professional experience and have chance to provide service to others and create a positive social impact.

Strategic Plan Focus Area 2

Image of ISB football team at the Shanghai APAC tournament

Several ISB teams traveled for prestigious sports tournaments recently. Here’s an in-depth look at the challenges and joys just one of these groups experienced, providing a case study on the learning and empowerment that students get through co-curricular activity.

3. Strong, lifelong peer relationships across national, linguistic, and cultural lines in our inclusive community. Our social-emotional learning program will continue to focus on relationships, and our co-curricular teams and performance groups on coaching peer collaboration. ISB is also developing the greatest alumni network in Asia.

Strategic Plan Focus Area 3

A collage of photos from ES assemblies and Learning Celebration events

ISB’s Elementary School has given students input into planning assemblies and events where they present their challenging and joyful learning to classmates and parents.

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