application guidelines

and Frequently Asked Questions

about the International School Awards

How much does it cost to enter?

Entry is free.

What period do these awards cover?

Judges will be looking for outstanding examples of best practice and innovation during the 2019-2020 academic year. Submissions based on projects that commenced prior to the 2019-2020 academic year, are accepted provided that success of the project(s) have been recorded during this period.

Who can enter?

The awards are open to all international schools.

How do I know if my school is eligible to be nominated for an International School Award?

Schools are eligible to participate in the International School Awards if they are an English-medium K-12 international school. For the purposes of these awards, this means if the school delivers a curriculum to any combination of pre-school, primary or secondary students, wholly or partly in English outside an English-speaking country. Or, if a school is in a country where English is one of the official languages, it offers an English-medium curriculum other than the country’s national curriculum and the school is international in its orientation.

How many entries can we make?

You may enter up to three categories, but you can only enter one application submission per category. Each application must be completed on the relevant category application form. All application forms are available here

Can our school submit 3 applications for the same category?

No. Each submission (up to a total of 3) must be from a different category.

Can one initiative be submitted for 3 different categories?

No. One application only can be accepted per initiative. Judges will not accept duplication of an initiative submitted to multiple categories so please carefully select the category that best represents your initiative. 

Can our school resubmit an initiative that we submitted in a previous year?

Initiatives submitted in previous years cannot be resubmitted unless significant development of an existing initiative has occurred during the past year and your application provides evidence of this.

How do we submit our application?

  1. Select the appropriate award category that best represents your initiative. See all categories and criteria here

  2. Select the relevant application form for the award category you have chosen. See all application forms here

  3. Complete the application form, responding to every question. Incomplete applications will not be eligible for judging.

  4. It is essential that you follow the word count limits within the application form. Any content over the identified word limit will be removed before your application is sent to the judges. This means that you must keep your submissions within the word count required.

  5. Once complete, send your application form with supporting evidence and photographs to applications@iscresearch.com no later than Wednesday 30th September 2020. Any applications submitted after the closing date will not be accepted.

  6. If you would like to submit a supporting video, please follow the instructions in your application form. Videos should be submitted via www.wetransfer.com with your school name clearly identified. 

When will I find out if we have been shortlisted?

​All schools shortlisted for an award will be notified by email on Friday 20th November 2020.

How are the entries judged?

An independent panel of education and international school experts select the winners. Details of all the judges are available here

What consideration are judges making to the impact of COVID-19 on schools that had campus closures?

At some point during the year, every single international school was directly impacted by COVID-19 and this is recognised in the criteria of all categories. Due to the impact of COVID-19, many initiatives were developed to respond to the crisis. As a result, judges will, this year, be looking for initiatives that show innovation and the potential for change as a result of adversity.

Applications must demonstrate how their initiative has addressed a challenge and also demonstrate the potential for longer-term development as a sustainable initiative for the school.  

When are the winners announced?

Announcement of the winners will be made at a virtual awards ceremony hosted by ISC Research on Monday 18th January 2021. 

What do schools win?

Each shortlisted school receives a logo recognising the school as being shortlisted for a 2021 International School Award. This logo can be displayed on the schools website and resources. This is a valuable quality mark for schools.

Shortlisted schools will be featured in the virtual awards ceremony on Monday 18th January 2021.

All category award winners will receive a prestigious category award trophy, a category winner logo for use in school marketing, and will be considered for the overall International School of the Year award.

The International School of the Year 2021 winner will receive a trophy and be recognised throughout the year on the ISC Research and ISL Magazine websites and in International School Leader Magazine. 

©2019 International School Leader