Three Aga Khan Schools in Pakistan win the British Council’s International School Award
Three schools from Aga Khan Education Service, Pakistan (AKES,P) -- Sultan Mohamed Shah Aga Khan School, Aga Khan School, Sultanabad, and Diamond Jubilee School, Altit, Hunza -- won the British Council’s International School Award.
The International School Award (ISA) is a British Council programme, aimed at bringing an international dimension to teaching and learning though partnerships and global learning. Schools partner with other participating schools, both national and international, and engage in international learning activities together. Among the goals for the ISA is recognition for teachers and schools, and opportunities to raise the school’s profile.
The ISA is based around the idea that partnership will flourish if the international work is integrated with everyday classroom activity. Therefore, it is awarded to schools that demonstrate a commitment to developing global citizens by encouraging international education through its ethos and curriculum. This year, close to 1,000 schools from Pakistan participated and 163 out of them were awarded the ISA. AKES,P schools first started participating in the ISA in 2012.
Each participating school was responsible for presenting a portfolio of work which reflects the activities it undertook during the year. This included projects, events in collaboration with other schools and professional development sessions for teachers. The themes around which the Aga Khan schools planned their activities included rights and responsibilities; justice and equality; sustainable living and environmental impact; peace and conflict; and citizenship.
The activities helped students become aware of global and environmental issues. They were critically engaged in real-world issues and were able to identify solutions. Students also started to recognise their responsibilities as global citizens, the importance of taking responsible actions, and making relevant changes. Most crucially, students were able to compare and examine their work, understanding the similarities and differences with that of their international peers.
The activities were also beneficial for the teachers, enhancing their professional development by encouraging them to teach through activities and projects, and sharing these with their counterparts in other schools. The sharing of plans, project work, and experiences helped in developing an understanding of different social and cultural contexts.
The Aga Khan Education Service, Pakistan (AKES,P) – an institute of Aga Khan Development Network - is amongst the largest private networks of education institutions in Pakistan serving over 40,000 students. Reaching out to the most remote areas of Pakistan, AKES,P has been providing quality education for over a hundred years. It is a direct provider of education from pre-primary to higher secondary school, and further facilitates access to tertiary education through the provision of scholarships and other educational support services.