“One child, one teacher, one pen and one book can change the world” Malala Yousafzai

In June 2014, I was privileged and honoured, to be asked to lead this remarkable school and I am thrilled with all that we have achieved in such a short period of time. It is a blessing to work with wonderful students, inspirational teachers, great staff and always-helpful parents.

As a small school it is vital to engage with our local community. We are often described as a ‘family’ school that aims to involve all its members. One parent recently described the school as a ‘Happy Island’. A leading educator in London in 2015 described TBSC as, “a little gem far, far away.” All accurate descriptions.

We have engaged in various Parent-School sessions in order to forge links as well as inform our community on leading educational practices. It is a fact that a strong home-school partnership enhances student learning. As the Head of School, I am extremely grateful for the support I have received from the school community, and in particular, the teachers, Parent-Teacher Association and our dedicated Board of Directors. This involvement has ensured that our philosophy and ethos are maintained and our school is always progressing.

The TBSC Mission Statement stresses our commitment to an ‘outstanding international education’, aiming for students to reach their potential, creating life-long learners who will be fully equipped to be contributors to the global world we live in. Not only do we aim for academic excellence at TBSC, we also aim to educate the ‘whole’ child. The 21st century is very different to the 20th century, and changes are occurring at a faster rate than ever before. We prepare TBSC graduates who are ready for these changes. The ASCD (http://www.ascd.org/) highlights five features that make up a whole child approach to learning: a healthy student, a safe environment for learning, student engagement, a supportive atmosphere and students who are challenged; factors we are committed to achieving together. Much of the learning you will witness at TBSC ensures these five main factors are met. The TBSC Student Profile created in 2015 incorporates these as well as more attributes that we feel are vital skills in this world. We will continue to embed this profile throughout the school, from students’ education to recruitment.

The last few years at TBSC have been full of excitement. We have grown from a Primary School, to a ‘Primary through to Secondary school’, that saw its first graduates enter university in August 2015. What a day their graduation was! I am pleased to announce that all our graduates since then have entered universities and are doing well. Many have commented that the education received at TBSC has helped them significantly at university. The Primary section continues to see the development of innovative teaching, learning and assessment procedures. Infrastructural growth continues to ensure our children enjoy the best facilities possible. There is much to do in the upcoming years; many challenges to face and calculated risks to be taken. Similarly, there are a lot of opportunities to be grasped. In this way, I believe the school will go from strength to strength.

We are inspected by the International Schools Inspectorate (ISI) and have the status of a British School Overseas. We are the third school in Latin America to be awarded this prestigious status and it opens up many doors. Once more, this is a reflection on the hard work, dedication and commitment by our highly-skilled staff.

Finally, reflecting back on the life of Malala Yousafzai who survived a brutal attack on her life and has gone on to inspire millions. This includes teachers and students. We hope to make her statement mentioned above true by moulding students (and teachers) who will make this world a better, and more peaceful place.

Thank you to all the community for your support and commitment. What we have achieved could not have been possible without you. I am truly looking forward to the future and in particular, to see how this ‘gem’ twinkles even brighter.

Yasir Patel
head@tbscaracas.com