Benefits for International Schools

What are the benefits of ISI inspections for international schools?

By achieving BSO accreditation, you can show that you provide a British education that is similar to an education in an independent school in England.

Our inspection is for the benefit of the pupils in the school and shows how standards measure up against the standards that apply to independent schools in England. This is invaluable information for present and future parents of pupils at the school.

Inspections are carried out impartially by our teams. They have sufficient expertise, relevant professional training and current first-hand experience of teaching or inspection in the UK. Our inspections:

  • report on the extent to which the BSO standards are met, and the quality of education in terms of outcomes for pupils
  • report on the distinctiveness of each school and how well it fulfils its aims
  • report on whether there is evidence that local requirements are met and comment on any evidence to the contrary
  • support school development and improvement
  • take account of any self-evaluation by the schools
  •  include clear and helpful oral feedback to schools
  • incorporate the principle of ‘peer review’


What are the options for inspection?

You can opt for either a full education quality and compliance inspection or a reduced compliance-only inspection.  We also offer inspections that conform to the same principles and quality standards as all ISI inspections, but are outside the BSO framework. These can be tailored more to the specific needs of the school and its local context.

The main aims of international inspections
They report to the UK Government’s Department for Education on the extent to which schools meet the published Standards for British International Schools.

  • They help schools improve the quality and effectiveness of pupils’ education and of the care for their welfare.
  • They provide objective and reliable inspection reports which help schools to recognise and build on their strengths, and identify and remedy any weaknesses.
  • They inform parents, governments and the wider public about the quality of British international schools because the reports are made public.
  • They assure associations that their member schools maintain the expected quality.

ISI inspections of British Schools Overseas closely follow the framework and guidance for independent school inspections in England.

How often are schools inspected?

The BSO scheme British Schools Overseas: Standards for Schools lists the standards that all accredited British Schools Overseas must meet. ISI uses these standards to inspect your school. To become accredited a school must have an inspection every three years which shows that its performance against all the standards is at least satisfactory.

For information on how to request an International or BSO Inspection, see Request an International Inspection.