The Avalon International School is a good example for schools in Cambridge


Tünde Oláh, Principal of Avalon International School (AIS), a new school in Hungary, tells us about the links they have formed with an established Cambridge school in Portugal.

“My everyday aim is to create and provide a school environment and ethos in which our AIS students can feel secure, happy and engaged in learning”

Tünde Oláh has been working in education for nearly 20 years. She has been with Avalon International School from the early planning stage and Principal since 2019. Before joining AIS, Tünde worked in Edinburgh, Scotland.

  1. Can you tell us about Avalon International School (AIS) and which Cambridge programmes you offer?

AIS opened its doors in September 2019 with three classes and has been growing ever since. Next year, we will have around 100 students. We built our school following our own values and high standards as well as those of Cambridge International. We offer the Cambridge Primary curriculum and, as our school grows, we’d also like to offer the Cambridge Lower Secondary programme. AIS’s ethos is built on educational values. We believe our key values (respect, honesty, equality, open-mindedness and helpfulness) should be the foundation stones for our students, their families, our sta, our leadership and our community.

  1. How did your partnership with Santo António International School (SAIS) in Portugal come about?

I met the Principal of SAIS at a Cambridge workshop; this was the start of our professional friendship. As SAIS has similar values, it was easy to find a common goal. I have received great advice from SAIS and I hope they have learned from us too. We’re grateful for this partnership and we believe our students can benefit a great deal from this cooperation.

  1. How does working with another Cambridge school benefit your students?

I believe it’s a great opportunity for our students to develop global perspectives through real-life and practical experiences. We have already established a pen-pal friendship group among the students. It’s a great joy to see how much happiness a letter from another Cambridge student can bring to our pupils, or how much excitement an online joint assembly can hold. It also opens doors for learning new practices and methods, and exchanging ideas and opinions.

  1. What are your plans for World Ocean Day in June?

We’re going to run a World Ocean Day project with SAIS, which will be delivered in Portugal. We’ve planned to do a long-term Cambridge Global Perspectives project in each school, which will be themed around World Ocean Day. We’ll present our projects through an online joint assembly and also in Portugal (12 AIS students will travel there). Students will have a chance to explain their planning, preparation, delivery and evaluation stages to each other. During our visit, AIS students will join the SAIS students to clean the beach together, and we’ll create a collaborative artwork from the collected rubbish.

  1. What makes you proud of your school?

Our students, our sta and our community make me proud of AIS. Our students talk to each other with respect, and our whole community shows kindness towards each other and engagement when learning. I’m proud that AIS contributes to the economic development of the region, and that our school supports bringing new international perspectives and values to this part of Hungary through our education and school ethos.