In addition to our School Placement Services, for over 30 years, Educational Connections has provided international and domestic school search services to well over 120 multinational corporations relocating families to over 50 countries worldwide. Whether moving across town or relocating across a provincial or international border, one essential question predominates for many families; “What about schools?”.
Research consistently indicates that “Family concerns” remains the number one challenge to employee relocation, with “children’s education” as the most frequently cited source of concern (see 2015 Brookfield Global Relocation Services Global Mobility Trends Survey).
Educational Connections addresses these concerns professionally, confidentially and objectively by providing the necessary supports to relocating families and to Human Resource Professionals to ensure that a successful relocation is achieved and sustained.
School Orientation Service (SOS©)
Our School Orientation Service (SOS©) is a one-hour personal or telephone consultation which addresses a family’s general questions on schooling.
Typical questions addressed by our educational specialists during this consultation include:
- Do moves present enrolment challenges to younger students (e.g., birth date)?
- What schooling options are available (e.g., public, parochial, private, independent, etc.)?
- What are the main features of the available school options?
- How does our child’s current school generally compare with these schooling options?
- What types of programs are available (e.g., Kindergarten, International Baccalaureate, Advanced Placement, French, Sports, Music, etc.)?
- What specialized supports are available for children with exceptional needs (e.g., LD, Gifted, Autistic, Physically Challenged, etc.)?
- What are the admission requirements for available schools and special programs?
- Do mid-year moves present special challenges to older students (e.g., semestered vs. non-semestered, university preparation, etc)?
- Are there reliable statistics we can use to direct our school search?
- How can we help our children prepare for and adjust to the school change?
“Objective answers contribute to successful housing decisions.”
Comprehensive School Search
Six Steps to a Successful Comprehensive School Search:
From the start of the school search to the finalization of their school choice, the family is provided with unlimited access to an Educational Specialist. EC’s Comprehensive School Search includes the following:
- Interview: An Educational Specialist conducts an interview in person or on the phone to confirm the family’s educational goals and schooling preferences. This confidential consultation addresses any immediate questions and/or concerns about the child’s educational history.
- Educational Portfolio©: An Educational Portfolio© (i.e., copies of school reports, work samples, standardized test results, etc.) is prepared by the parents for each child. The documentation is reviewed and analysed by EC’s team to determine whether there are specialized curriculum, programming or school placement needs. Parents are then contacted to clarify any remaining educational questions and to provide feedback. If a Specialized Placement is indicated, the implications are discussed, and with the parents’ permission, it is presented to the Human Resources or Relocation Specialist overseeing the family’s move.
- School Research: Once the child’s schooling needs are confirmed, EC’s team fully researches and identifies suitable schools and programs which match the child’s academic requirements and the family’s educational goals. The schools are prioritized and the availability of openings as well as application and admissions procedures are confirmed. Prior to the family’s initial visit to the new location, the Educational Specialist and the other members of the relocation team coordinate the school visits and the housing search.
- School Visits: A written itinerary detailing each school visit (i.e., school descriptions, contacts, appointment times, etc.) is provided to the family and their relocation consultant. Families also receive a copy of EC’s Finding the Right School Guide© to guide their school selection. It is recommended that parents bring copies of each child’s Educational Portfolio© to the school interviews to facilitate placement discussion and decisions.
- Choosing The Right School: Throughout the selection process, EC’s team of specialists is available to address the family’s questions promptly and to guide them to the right school choice. After the school visits, the Educational Specialist contacts the schools to ensure that all admission requirements have been appropriately finalized.
The Comprehensive School Search is completed when the family confirms their school choice.
- Post-Relocation Follow up: A month after the child has started their new school, the Educational Specialist contacts the family to ensure the child’s transition was successful.
Specialized Placement Supports
The interview with both parents is the first step in any Comprehensive School Search. During the interview, and during our subsequent review of the child’s educational documentation, our consultants determine whether there are special learning or placement needs. If specialized Placements Supports are indicated, the nature and extent of the child’s needs are discussed confidentially with the parents to obtain a clear understanding of the impact of these needs on the school search and relocation.
With the permission of the parents, the nature of the child’s special placement needs is then confirmed with their Human Resouces Advisor at the destination school. A description of the anticipated specialized supports and their estimated costs are prepared and provided to the Human Resources Advisor to facilitate decision making and relocation planning.
By conducting these services in advance of a relocation, an effective class or program placement can be identified at the time of their move without the uncertainty of stressful bureaucratic delays or temporary placments.
When a child requires more specialized placement supports, Educational Connections can arrange educational or psychological assessments through its worldwide network of professional agencies and associates. Educational connections can also access these services directly through their assessment division.
Policy Research services are customized to a corporation’s needs and range from: the review of existing or proposed relocation policies, to cross-country comparisons of educational systems, to the provision of objective school search guidelines for group employee relocations.
Faced with considerable differences in education from city to city, country to country, families are increasingly requesting private schooling when they relocate. These placement demands are costly, can impact future policy, and may simply reflect assumptions about schooling rather than real schooling differences. How is a company to make smart and consistent relocation funding decisions?
The research team at Educational Connections, along with our worldwide network of colleagues, provides both global and domestic perspectives on your corporation’s relocation policy on schooling.
Educational Connections has the practical skills and objective research experience to generate the information and expert opinion that will help you make funding decisions and develop a fair and equitable relocation policy.
Recent Policy Research Projects conducted by EC:
Note: Research projects are the confidential property of the sponsoring corporation.