EIFA International School makes the most of its London connections
The poet John Donne famously wrote that ‘No man is an island’ and recent events have made this more apt than ever. At EIFA International School, we believe that education in the international environment of the School allows pupils to gain an in-depth understanding of different languages, cultures and outlooks, without leaving London.
‘We have noticed an increase in pupils from London prep schools, attracted by the international aspect of the education, as well as the nurturing environment,’ stated Mme Françoise Zurbach, Head of School. ‘International and expatriate families have long been drawn to the School by its reputation for excellence and its location, close to the museums, galleries and theatres of Central London.
Teaching staff, who mirror the diversity of the pupils, take full advantage of this, planning trips to hidden gems such as the Petrie Museum, as well as better known destinations such as the British Museum or Tate Modern. Watching a performance at The Globe Theatre brings Shakespeare to life in a unique way, and visiting the Dickens Museum casts a new perspective on his work.’
At EIFA International School, the wellbeing and personal development of every pupil are of paramount importance and flourish in the School’s small scale and nurturing environment. Teachers treat each child as an individual and are ideally placed to notice changes in behaviour, so children can be supported, and issues tackled before they develop. This provision was rated as ‘Outstanding’ by OFSTED.
This philosophy of individual attention is at the heart of our approach to teaching: staff work with pupils and parents to plan a programme to allow each child to flourish and achieve their potential. The focus on wellbeing was central to the School’s response to lockdown, earning high praise from pupils and parents.
The Senior School is not academically selective. Instead, when children arrive at EIFA, staff focus on fostering a love of learning, alongside the promotion of important skills such as resilience, a willingness to cooperate and developing independence and self-confidence. Our task is to create a safe environment for children to express ideas in a constructive atmosphere. If children enjoy learning, feel secure and have excellent teachers, then success should follow.
Pupils are given regular opportunities to complete research projects, develop critical-thinking skills and can often be found practising technical and public-speaking skills on EIFA’s web-radio station. Mme Zurbach believes true self-confidence comes from developing skills in real-life situations, expressing opinions, and making genuine contributions to school life.
Pupils are encouraged to participate in the School’s charity and community projects, which eventually become part of the International Baccalaureate® (IB) Diploma programme. Pupils nominate causes and organise events such as selling roses on Valentine’s Day to raise funds for Youth Music and hosting a book sale in aid of a literacy charity. The combination of academic achievement and social conscience means pupils leave EIFA well educated in the broadest sense and, to quote Donne again, ‘involved in mankind’.
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