POM Limburg looks into feasibility of international school for Limburg
POM Limburg is looking into the feasibility of an international school on Corda Campus. An international school would make Limburg more interesting to foreign investors. The Dutch consultancy Decisio will lead the study; the results are expected by the end of this year.
In international schools, classes are taught in a foreign language, generally English. The students are often children of expats or foreign knowledge workers. POM Limburg is now setting up an exploratory study for a bilingual primary and secondary school together with LRM, Corda Campus and Deputy for Education Bert Lambrechts. The school would follow the IB curriculum, one of the best known and oldest systems of international education. Corda Campus is currently being put forward as a location, but the study will show whether this is actually the best choice.
An international school can have a positive influence on the investment climate in Limburg. Tom Vandeput, Deputy for the Economy and Chairman of POM Limburg: “In today’s economy, internationalisation is increasingly the norm. Companies are working with each other on an ever bigger scale and over increasingly long distances.” By highlighting Limburg’s international image, POM is aiming to make the province more interesting as a region to set up shop. “Foreign companies no longer choose their international base solely on the basis of hard factors, such as sales market, accessibility or access to raw materials. Soft factors are becoming increasingly important, such as employee satisfaction, the image of the region and the availability of talent. Studies show that an international school is also an important soft factor in setting up shop.”
POM Limburg commissioned economic research and consultancy firm Decisio, based in Amsterdam, which had conducted a range of studies on the international community in the Netherlands. Tom Vandeput: “Specifically, we want to map out what the added value of an international school would be, and to what extent it is a catalyst for our further internationalisation. But also whether there is sufficient critical mass in Limburg. In other words, what are the short- and long-term consequences, and is the project at all feasible in our region. We expect the results by the end of this year.”
With the Expat Centre Limburg, POM Limburg has been welcoming foreign knowledge workers for some time now. Tom Vandeput: “International companies are often looking for specific highly-educated profiles, and they find them in the form of expats. The more expats who find their way to our province, the more businesses will set up here. If expats find a warm welcome here, and their children can attend an international school, that is a great asset for Limburg. Once the children graduate from the secondary international school, we make the link with our knowledge institutions, and the circle is complete.”