Pioneering Compass Education’s School Community Sustainability Transformation (SCST) at UNIS Hanoi

by Teresa Tung and Scott Edwards

We’re excited to report that Compass Education (CE) has been working with the United Nations International School of Hanoi (UNIS Hanoi) to pioneer a new service: Compass Education’s School Community Sustainability Transformation (SCST). Organized as two 2-day face-to-face sessions with virtual support between and after, the SCST process is helping UNIS Hanoi and its school community develop their own holistic, systems integrated, schoolwide approach to sustainability.

Building on the VISIS pyramid, which Compass Educators who have been through Level 2 will be very familiar with, the SCST takes school communities through a proven sustainable development planning & action cycle that focuses on systems thinking and effective change strategies. This process empowers school to consider all areas in which they can have an impact on sustainability, and to prioritize initiatives that will have the greatest impact. School communities are able to develop realistic action plans that support the school’s mission and provide valuable feedback for future initiatives.

On October 18-19 CE facilitators, Teresa Tung and Scott Edwards, travelled to Hanoi to complete Session 1 with UNIS Hanoi’s sustainability team comprised of 30 community members including teachers, administrators, board members, support staff, parents and students.

As a result of the first session, the school community has developed a shared vision of sustainability, grounded in the school’s mission and stated values. They have also developed a customized sustainable school framework by adapting the Compass School Community Sustainability Framework prototype to align with their own strategic management and reporting structures.

Here is one of the feedback we received from the school:

Compass Education introduced us to a framework and tools around which to build a sustainability initiative tailored to our school. The facilitators were very effective in helping us to crystallise a personalised vision statement. The conceptual tools developed by Compass Education are clear, simple, and easy for a variety of stakeholders in our school community to use and understand.

Empowered with this, the UNIS Hanoi sustainability team will spend the next few months developing preliminary indicators and gathering evidence of systems that are currently in place. Teresa and Scott will return in March for Session 2 to delve into the Systems, Innovations, and Strategies levels of the VISIS Pyramid.