The ECP as a hub of professional development excellence

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We are very pleased to announce that The English College in Prague has been selected as one of seven COBIS Training Schools after a competitive global application process. The Council of British International Schools (COBIS) is the premiere association of British schools of quality overseas. It is serving educational institutions around the world. 

About the programme

The Training Schools programme was created “to enable schools to demonstrate the breadth and quality of their commitment to professional development,” according to COBIS. It focuses on career progression routes, initial teacher training and whole school workforce development. Training Schools serve as “regional hubs” for professional learning events and model best practice in the development of educators. COBIS also hopes the programme will help support the growth of the global teacher workforce in the long-term. 

Dr Fiona Rogers, Deputy CEO and Director of Professional Development and Research at COBIS, wrote that The ECP promotes “good ideas backed up by enthusiasm, commitment of time and regular feedback to the SLT. As a small school, they are well on their way.”

Sharing with the community

The ECP has hosted a number of conferences over the past few years. They include events for the Association of Central European Schools, the Akademie věd ČR and WomenEdCzech. We regularly facilitate or partake in International Baccalaureate (IB) “job-alikes.” These allow subject teachers from across the region to share pedagogical knowledge. Other vocational workshops are provided as well, such as an evening on teaching English literature in Czech schools and sessions on Online Safeguarding.

Moreover, ECP staff have shared locally and globally in their areas of expertise. We have had individual staff members speaking at conferences, examining papers for the IB Programme, delivering webinars on learning management systems, writing for academic publications and more. The ECP staff is truly a community of lifelong learners.

Our approach to professional development

Our mission statement for professional development is “To celebrate, support and enhance the teaching and learning at The ECP.” The already-talented ECP staff continue to engage in developing their own and colleagues’ teaching. We have established a collaborative professional learning community that includes:

  • Evidence-based practice. Evidence from primary and secondary research is paramount in our decision-making process.
  • Analysis and evaluation. We evaluate the effectiveness of our own teaching and change and adapt based on what we find.
  • A culture of trust and risk-taking. This allows colleagues to continually hone what they do in a supportive environment that recognises diversity.

We actively encourage educational research and the promotion of new ideas. Staff have proposed and enacted language exchanges, a Year 6-to-Year 1 mentoring scheme, Science trips, community building days and more. For those who want to explore career progression, there is a shadowing scheme in place. Recently, staff have completed accreditation for the Induction for Newly Qualified Teachers (NQT) or the National Professional Qualification for Senior Leadership (NPQSL). 

This COBIS Training Schools recognition affirms The ECP’s commitment to lifelong learning, innovation, and sharing our best practice locally and globally. More information on the Training Schools Programme is available here.

Emily Rankin, Deputy Head for Upper School/Teaching & Learning