55 Years of Global Citizenship
Autumn 1964; the Beatles were taking the world by storm, The Civil Rights Act was signed into law in the United States, and Peace Corps volunteer Robert Fendly was asked if he would set up an international school in Kuala Lumpur. One year later in September 1965, with the help of a start-up grant from the Office of Overseas Schools, The International School of Kuala Lumpur was ready to provide the best education possible for its first 48 students.
55 years on and, while we have grown and developed as a school, our focus on learning, commitment to global citizenship, and role as educators who transform lives remains unchanged. Our 55th-anniversary video, ISKL 55 years in 55 seconds, is an inspiring reminder of the continuity of ISKL’s community and the role our school plays in developing socially responsible global citizens – something our world needs now more than ever.
Learning to be a global citizen continues to be an integral part of an ISKL education. We guide our students in understanding the concepts of global citizenship using indicators (shown below) which encourage them to investigate the world, recognize perspectives, communicate ideas, and take action. The following is used as a prompt for students to think about the world from the perspective of others:
“I recognize my own perspectives and those of others with empathy and respect, and I develop a sense of belonging to a common humanity with shared needs and responsibilities.”
I find this prompt particularly relevant when viewing many of the challenges our world faces today and its underlying message of empathy, respect and belonging to a common humanity is the focus of our In-Service Day for faculty and staff on Friday.
While our caring, empathetic, and inclusive culture and programming provide equal access and the opportunity for all students to succeed and find their passion we know there is always room for us to grow and develop as a school and community of learners. At our In-Service day we will be working collectively to reflect, strengthen our approach and create a shared understanding of our vision for diversity, equity, inclusion and justice at ISKL. Just as we encourage our students to look from the perspective of others, understand the world around them, and seek an honest understanding of themselves, we are also committed to doing the same as a school. This is what it means to be a true learning community and to model the behaviour and dispositions we expect from our students.
Over the past 55 years we have undoubtedly contributed to creating a better world – one ISKL student at a time – and as we celebrate our 55th anniversary I am truly excited about our future and the difference our students will continue to make in our world.
I wish you all an enjoyable extended weekend and Selamat Menyambut Awal Muharram.
Yours in partnership,
Head of School