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Four New Schools Open in 2017

Four New Schools Open in 2017

For the first time Internationella Engelska Skolan has opened four new schools in one year - with Landskrona, Helsingborg, Södertälje and Årsta bringing the total number of IES schools in Sweden to 34. 

The new schools will grow over several years but are already educating 1,600 students, bringing the total number of students currently learning with IES to 24,000.

The organisation also held its largest ever event for staff as more than 700 newly-employed colleagues gathered together in one place, at KTH’s Aula Medica, to learn more about the company.

IES Landskrona is the first ever brand-new school that the organisation has opened, after a project in partnership with landlord Hemsö and Landskrona municipality saw the construction of a custom-designed school, next to the municipality's new sports hall, in the up-and-coming area of Borstahusen.

This is also the first time that IES has opened an F-9 school, welcoming seven-year-olds who will learn with IES all the way through until they are ready for gymnasiet.

Mr. Fredrik Alvarsson (pictured above, left, with IES Landskrona Principal Mr. Chris Nilsson and the captains of all four houses) , who is in charge of development for the project’s landlords, Hemsö, spoke in front of students in Landskrona as he donated 10,000 SEK for them to choose recreation facilities for their student lounge.

He said: “We have planned and built this school over the past three years, to create the best possible environment for you, so that you can learn as much as possible every day and become the best students that you can by the time you graduate from grade nine.

"We also wanted to give some money to you, and we will hold a contest for your houses. The house that wins the contest will decide what the money will be spent on."

While the school in Landskrona represents two important firsts, it is only one of several schools which is opening this year, and each of them is the focus of the excitement of the staff and students attending.

Speaking at the opening in Helsingborg, a new 4-9 school in a refurbished building with certified historical significance, the founder and vice chairman of IES, Ms. Barbara Bergström, said.  “For me it is an incredible honour to stand here this morning and welcome you to Internationella Engelska Skolan in Helsingborg. I address you with a huge amount of humility, I understand that you as the parents are entrusting us with that which is most special in your lives, your children, our students.  It is a tremendous honour for all of us.  Mr. Andersson and his staff with their enthusiasm, their dedication, their passion for learning, will take this honour extremely seriously.  The school is not anything without you, our students, and their parents.  We treasure the confidence that you have given us this morning and for the years to come.”

Each new school commemorated its opening according to IES tradition, by planting an apple tree, and cutting a ribbon to mark the school open.

At the first of the four opening ceremonies, for a new 4-9 school in Årsta, the principal, Mr. Julian Dent, said: "It is my honour to stand in front of you and open the 31st IES school in Sweden.  The team has worked extremely hard to get this done and welcome you here today. We are very excited to have all the students here finally.

"Almost a quarter of a century ago a few kilometres away in Enskede, Ms. Bergström started the first IES school and from there, dare I say, we have revolutionised Swedish education.  We invite you students here to command the English language.  We want to prepare you to go out there in the world. That is why we have teachers from 11 different countries, teaching students here at this school."

A t the opening of the school in Södertälje, also for years 4-9, the principal, Mr. Johan Öhman, said: "When I was hired as principal of this school, in my first interview I said ‘As always with IES the expectation is set to a high standard. The expectation of continually high standards gives us great inspiration to provide all students with a first-class education.'  That is why I took this job, it is a choice of education to achieve excellence.  Students, I believe in you all, each and every one of you can achieve beyond your own expectations, and believe me, when you do, it’s not only fun, it creates strength, you will be self-aware, and self-confident.”

Swedish Schools Inspectorate’s regular inspection completed: 90% of IES schools entirely free of criticism

The Swedish Schools Inspectorate’s regular inspection of Internationella Engelska Skolan was completed according to plan in June 2017. Inspection of free schools is carried out every three years and encompasses all the schools operated by the principal. Where municipalities act as the principal, inspections are carried out every five years and only encompass 20% of schools.

The basic inspection of IES compulsory schools showed that 23 of 24 schools were entirely free of criticism. One school was notified of a minor shortcoming, which is now being remedied. This means that 96% of IES schools were entirely free of criticism, which can be compared to the national average after basic inspection of 74%.

In the five compulsory schools the Swedish Schools Inspectorate selected for more detailed inspection, three were found to be entirely without criticism, while two received limited and justified criticism which is now being addressed. 

There was no criticism of Internationella Engelska Gymnasiet. 

Overall, the Swedish Schools Inspectorate reported that 27 of 30 IES schools, i.e. 90%, were entirely without criticism. With regard to the principal, Internationella Engelska Skolan i Sverige AB, the Swedish Schools Inspectorate had no criticisms of the organization’s academic results, education in English or initiatives to ensure an orderly environment in schools. In its decisions regarding the principal, the Swedish Schools Inspectorate requires further development of after-school centres and the use of psychologists in preventative student healthcare. It also noted that two of the 30 principals do not have teacher training qualifications. They have leadership backgrounds in other forms.

“The positive results are evidence of our efforts to provide our students with the best possible education and training for the future,” commented Ralph Riber, CEO and President of Internationella Engelska Skolan. 

“I would like to thank our very competent principals, teachers and other staff who provide the education that Internationella Engelska Skolan stands for.”

IES Wins Gold and Silver in Prestigious Maths Contest

IES Wins Gold and Silver in Prestigious Maths Contest

Students with a passion for maths made sure the first and second prizes in an elite national maths contest were carried home by two IES schools.

IES Nacka came first and IES Uppsala second in Pythagoras Quest, a maths contest for students up to and including grade nine.  IES Sundsvall also made it to the national final, having triumphed over competition from their region to be one of the top 16 teams in Sweden.
 
The popular annual maths competition focuses on students working together in group of three.  The competition sees students compete within their school to make the school’s team before facing off against other schools in their region (län).  The winning teams are then invited to Malmö Borgarskola to compete in the national final.

Eighth-grade student Willhelm Sigurd was part of the winning team from IES Nacka alongside ninth-graders Viktor Lundqvist and Alex Thelander.
 
He said: “We were very satisfied with what we did during the competition and we thought our score would be high enough for making us one of the top teams. We thought we had a chance to win, and we obviously hoped that was the case. When the results began to be announced and we got to know some of the scores the top teams had, we realized it was looking good for us, and that made us excited. When we got to know we were the winners, we obviously got very happy and relieved.
 
"The questions were challenging, we had to work hard with them, but that is how it is supposed to be. I think the competition was at a good difficulty level this year.”

While the team from Nacka claimed victory, their counterparts from Uppsala also performed fantastically as the team, made up of Vilgot Jansson, Lise Hanebring and David Mörtberg, managed to take the second place in the contest.

The double-victory in the contest follows an increased focus on the subject of mathematics within IES.

Ted Buzzelli, the organisation's subject facilitator for mathematics, said: "Congratulations to all three teams who took part in the final of Pythagoras Quest this year, this really is a fantastic achievement both in terms of teamwork on the competition day and the years of great preparation beforehand.

"We are always working to improve the quality of the maths tuition in our schools - that is something that benefits every student, as can be seen in the way that a far higher percentage of our students achieve top grades in the national tests for mathematics, as well as fantastic results like this.  Not everyone can go on to win a competition like this, but at IES we strive to participate and prepare as though we will.  We also want to enjoy the time we spend doing this."

Maths teachers taking part in an inspirational session

Recently maths teachers from across the organisation were brought together for an inspirational session with maths speaker Matt Parker at IES Kista.  The main focus of this event was to explore fun and exciting methods that will enable our students to more easily enjoy and learn maths.

Damian Brunker, the organisation’s head of academics said.  “We are committed to helping out teaching staff develop and grow.  Events like this lead to energised teachers and new ideas in the classroom. When teachers are at the top of their game, it is the students who benefit.  This event saw 104 teachers thoroughly inspired and this inspiration will be passed along to thousands of our students."

Gold and Silver: (Pictured at top of page L-R) The winning trio of Alex Thelander Y9, Viktor Lundqvist Y9, and Wilhelm Sigurd Y8, from IES Nacka and runners up Vilgot Jansson Y9, Lise Hanebring Y9, David Mörtberg Y7 of IES Uppsala.

Den Blomstertid Nu Kommer

Den Blomstertid Nu Kommer

Tassels have been passed from right to left, caps have been thrown into the air and voices have been raised to sing Den Blomstertid Nu Kommer.

Across Sweden, more than 3,000 grade nine Internationella Engelska Skolan students have celebrated their graduation in front of proud family members, and the school staff who have helped them to develop to this point over the past several years.

Now, as they bid farewell to their schools, the students will go forward to the next challenges of their lives.
This year there were five IES schools who were saying goodbye to a graduating class for the first time. At Falun, Liljeholmen, Hässleholm, Kista and Umeå those students graduating marked the first group to move on from the IES school.

The graduation ceremony is a big part of the tradition of Internationella Engelska Skolan. It is held to honour the achievements of the students and all of their efforts, academic and otherwise, during their time at the school. Students wear iconic blue caps and gowns in an American-style graduation, with speeches and performances of live music from the student body.

During the graduation at IES Liljeholmen students assembled in the schoolyard where a stage had been constructed for the occasion, they heard from their president, graduating student David Hjalmarsson-Batman.
He said: “Today is a very special day.  Today is the day that we graduate.  The first time that we ninth graders graduate. This day is a milestone in many aspects, this day marks the transition towards continuing our studies at our upper secondary schools.

"If it wasn’t for the English teachers who taught me the linguistics, I would never be able to stand here today to give this speech in English.

"Yesterday we were students, today we are graduates, and tomorrow we are proud alums of our alma mater, IES Liljeholmen.”

The school’s Principal AnnaKarin Johansson also spoke to the assembled group of students, parents and staff.
She said: “Dear students, both in year 9 and 8. You are writing history today as the first two classes to graduate from IES Liljeholmen. In a very short year, students of year 8, you will graduate as the first five classes.  It is an honour to have been part of your life, even for a very short time. You have taught me a lot. Students of year 9. I wish you all the best for the future.

“The world that you are entering is challenging, demanding and full of opportunities. And my advice to you, is to embrace those challenges. Meet the demands with grit, perseverance, motivation, and sisu.”
IES Falun held their graduation at Lugnetskyrkan conference centre.

Those assembled enjoyed virtuoso performances on the piano, saxophone and clarinet as well as speeches from representatives of the staff and students.

Sara Fahlström and Balazs Tarján
Valedictorian and School Ambassador for IES Falun

Sara Fahlström, who was named as Falun’s valedictorian, said: “What I will remember is all the amazing people here, and so now that we have the opportunity, we would like to thank them. We want to say thank-you to the teachers, we have learnt so much these past three years and it is all thanks to you."

Balazs Tarján, Falun's school ambassador, added: “I would like to thank my teachers, my fellow students and my mentors.  I was a little bit surprised to win this award because I didn’t think I would.  For me it is natural to help others, follow the rules, and show respect.  It is really important to have a combination of respect and support in order to have a safe environment.

"We also wanted to thank both of the year nine classes, we are are all really different and that is a good thing, because by being different we have all put in a lot of effort and achieved our goals in hundreds of different ways and in hundreds of different situations."

After the summer holidays a new grade nine class will take its place at each IES school, as they work towards their own graduation day and do their best to meet their goals, academic and otherwise, so that they are as prepared as possible for their future.

Students Sing For Victory in IES Eurovision Song Contest

Students Sing For Victory in IES Eurovision Song Contest

A grade nine student from IES Tyresö was crowned the winner after 18 bands and solo artists stepped forward to perform during the annual Internationella Engelska Skolan Modern Foreign Languages Eurovision Song Contest.

The popular competition is open to students at all IES schools and sees them perform a song in a language other than Swedish or English.

 

 

This year’s winner was Stella Chirinos from IES Tyresö (Pictured above with French Teacher Mr Guerneui, Founder of IES Ms Bergstöm, and music teacher Mr Stones). Stella sang Dernière Danse by French singer-songwriter Indila.

Stella said: “It was a strange feeling to hear that I had won. There was some very good singers from other schools. I knew that I had given a good performance and that I had a strong song but it's always a good surprise to win.

"I started in year 7 here at IES Tyresö so I've been learning French for three years. I like the language, I like how it sounds.”

Stella got the idea of performing the Indila song after a friend mentioned it in a French lesson and she realised it would suit her well.

She said: “I like to sing because it's fun and I can express feeling through songs. There are songs for all occasions, sad and happy.

"I've been singing since I was seven and I've performed on stage on several occasions previously so I have some stage experience but you can't take away the nervosity."

Her French teacher, Mr Guerneui added: “I knew that my student Stella was a very strong candidate for victory but when I heard the singers from Nacka and Gävle I felt that this year's trophy might as well go to one of these schools. The two girls had very strong and beautiful voices. It's my first year at IES Tyresö  and we are still a relatively new school so I am glad that we won with our first attempt.”

Second place was awarded to Paulina Johnson of IES Gävle (pictured, left) who sang Mii Años in Spanish, while the third prize went to a band from IES Nacka made up of Felicia Elding, Louise Andersson, Alva Willers and Annie Wallin (pictured, below, right). Together they performed Colores En El Biento in Spanish.

This year the event was hosted by IES Bromma, other IES schools taking part included those from: Älvsjö, Täby, Kista, Skärholmen, Huddinge, Liljeholmen, Uppsala, Hässelby, Eskilstuna, Halmstad, Lund, Sundsvall, Johanneberg and Hässleholm .

The result means that, according to Eurovision tradition, IES Tyresö will host next year’s contest.

Mr Guerneui is looking forward to putting together next year’s event.

He said: “IES Bromma has set the bar very high this year but we are confident to maintain the same standard next year."

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