Among the highlights of the recent Association of International Schools in Asia (AISA) 2015 Conference in Cape Town, South Africa was its Child Protection Symposium, fully funded by Search Associates. Search Associates President Jessica Magagna noted,
"Because we believe strongly in child protection improvements and want to be as supportive as we can, Search Associates donated $10,000 as the sole sponsor of the Child Protection Symposium."
Representing Search Associates at the conference were Senior Associates Gez Hayden, Ralph Jahr, and John Ritter. John led workshops on "child-protective staff recruitment" at the Child Protection Symposium. Ralph and Gez also participated in the Symposium as well as representing Search Associates throughout the wider conference.
In addition to staff recruitment, Symposium sessions focused on many aspects of child protection at international schools, including school policy and procedures, curriculum, accreditation, and legal aspects. The staff recruitment workshop built on the ongoing work of the International Task Force on Child Protection (ITFCP), which has been formed by a large number of international schools as well as all major accreditation and recruitment agencies. Another Senior Associate, Bridget McNamer, has been representing Search Associates on the Task Force as the Co-Chair of the Task Force's Staff Recruitment Committee. AISA Executive Director, Dr Peter Bateman commented,
"The generous sponsorship Search Associates has given AISA to support the 2015 Child Protection Symposium will have a direct impact on the ability of our school leaders to better understand and respond to the important issues associated with the safety and well-being of the children in international schools."
Founded in 1969, AISA members include international schools in 34 countries throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Within these schools, there are roughly 2,500 teachers and administrators and nearly 42,000 students.
"About AISA: Our Schools." Association of International Schools in Africa. 2014. Web. 19 March 2015. http://www.aisa.or.ke/page.cfm?p=1565.
"AISA Educators Conference." Association of International Schools in Africa. 2014. Web. 19 March 2015. http://www.aisa.or.ke/page.cfm?p=1565.