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In 1988 Ronald Stones OBE, who was then the principal of British International School, Jakarta, suggested that Headteachers of Britsh Schools in South East Asia meet in order to discuss matters of mutual interest, and offer each other support in delivering a British type curriculum far removed from home base.
The first meeting was hosted by Mr. Stones in Jakarta in November 1988 and was attended by 5 heads: Mr. Abidin of Kota Kinabalu International School, Mrs. Goodban, Tanglin Trust School, Singapore, Mrs. Cloutt, British School Manila, Mr. Thomas, Bangkok Patana School, & Mr. Eales, Alice Smith School, Kuala Lumpur.
The inauguaral meeting was judged a great success, and it was agreed that the that the experience had been of benefit to all – so much so that it was decided that the meeting should be held annually with a different school acting as host each time.
In 2013, the membership agreed to change FOBISSEA to FOBISIA (the Federation of British International Schools in Asia) to better reflect the growth in the Asian region.
The overall aim of the Federation is to promote excellence in good British-style education in our schools, and to provide opportunities for inter-school competitions and enrichment programmes.
The Games and the Music Festival are now well established in the calendar of the Federation of Schools and provide a most valuable platform for students and staff to join together in a spirit of enjoyment and cooperation. FOBISIA also provides a forum for professional dialogue between the Heads and staff of British International Schools in the region, supporting professional development, training and contact.
From a very humble beginning, the Federation has grown over the past thirty years to be an organisation known and respected all over Asia and beyond, serving the interests first and foremost of all FOBISIA students, teachers and schools.