Q+A: British International School, Budapest
British International School Budapest (BISB) provides a British-style education for students from over 65 nationalities, aged three to 18 years. Here the school answers our questions and takes Winter's readers on a virtual tour…
What facilities do you offer?
Our school lies alongside a golf course in a leafy part of Budapest, a short distance from the beautiful city centre and the Danube. Our facilities here at BISB are second to none. Over the past 18 months we have undertaken a building programme to extend and modernise what is on offer.
In September 2016 a new building was opened which benefits all students, with additional music, science and computing laboratories. A new sports extension building will open shortly, with an international standard basketball court, a theatre and an additional outside sports field.
What accreditations do you have?
BISB is a Nord Anglia Education school and is accredited by the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO), the Council of International Schools (COBIS) and the Duke of Edinburgh International Award.
What are your admissions procedures?
Initial contact with our admissions team can be made through our website, by telephone or email. Our professional and experienced team will guide you through the process step by step. You will be invited to come for an initial visit to meet with the admissions staff and to see around our modern campus.
After this visit you will be invited to apply for a place and then your child will need to sit an online test and, if appropriate, have an EAL interview. If your child is coming into school at Year 12, there will also be an English, Mathematics and Science paper for them to sit. Following on from the assessments, our academic staff will make a decision about whether we can offer a place and guide you and your child to the most appropriate courses at BISB.
What curriculum do you follow?
BISB is the premier British school in Budapest, and if you make the decision to send your child here you will be getting the best education that Nord Anglia Education can provide. We accept students with a wide range of backgrounds, skills, capabilities and needs, and endeavour to provide a personalised learning experience for your child.
Children will start in our very special Early Years Centre. The National Curriculum for England frames the educational provision through to the end of Key Stage 4, when our 16-year-old students take IGCSEs and GCSEs, before embarking on the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme through to 18. Our students aspire to excellence and progress to top universities around the world.
What links to you have with other schools and organisations?
As a Nord Anglia Education school we can take full advantage of our Global Campus, which includes collaborations with MIT, UNICEF and the Julliard School. We can also offer pupils the option of visiting our project in Tanzania and provide online interaction with pupils from around the world.
What extra-curricular activities do you offer?
Students have the opportunity to take part in our Learning Enrichment Activities Programme, which offers a large selection of activities that children can choose from, ranging from Lego robots to cheerleading, ballroom dancing to football and golf to sewing.
Do you offer the Duke of Edinburgh's Award?
We provide the opportunity for students to participate in the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award in the Secondary School, developing in young people a sense of independence and adventure.
What opportunities are there for students to learn a musical instrument?
Our peripatetic music lesson programme is very popular with our students, with over 250 lessons being provided each week. We currently have nine musicians who teach private lessons at the school throughout the year. All are highly experienced and have an excellent command of the English language.
Students have the opportunity to participate in recitals and also may enter for examinations with the Associated Board of the Royal School of Music or Rock School, which are held in Budapest every June. We encourage students in the peripatetic music programme to participate in the extra-curricular ensembles. Students also utilise their performance skills in the curricular music class activities.
How can parents get involved?
Our whole-school community is highly valued and the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) is a key part of that. The essential but sometimes unwritten roles of the PTA include helping people settle when they move to a new city, creating a real community from a diverse group of parents, teachers and students, and providing a sense of security so that students can quickly settle down to the important task of learning.
What opportunities exist for parents to speak to their child's teachers should they have any worries or concerns?
We consider ourselves to be in partnership with you as we educate your child. Parents are encouraged to speak with Class Teachers and Form Tutors on a regular basis.
How often do parents receive written reports?
We have parents’ evenings during the year and parents receive regular reports on progress and attainment, where teacher judgement is informed by GL Assessment’s series of standardised tests. Each Key Stage has a different reporting schedule, which parents are advised about at the beginning of each year.
Do you have a cafeteria?
Our students benefit from our wonderful dining area and the nutritious food on offer here. With our own nutritionist working with our dedicated catering team, the food here is of a very high standard and we are able to cater for all types of dietary needs. There is also a coffee shop which students and parents can use.
All images: BISB
To view BISB's profile on Winter's, please go to this link.