Messages from the President of the Board and the Principal

Message from the President of the Board at the Opening of the school year

Good morning

It is always great to see so many happy and new faces as we get ready to start a new school year.

We have a great number of new students joining this school year from other schools and some from other countries. The same can be said for the parents and staff. OIS is growing in a sustained way but in our collective attitude and in the feel of the school, I want OIS to stay small, a school where everybody knows everybody else and cares for their well-being.

That is why those of you that were here last year have a very important mission:

• Make sure that the newcomers feel at home in the new school of their choice. Be proactive in making them feel welcome and at ease in their new school. I want everyone to be proud of the friendly, open and welcoming environment we foster at OIS.

Now It’s a good time to remind ourselves WHY the OIS project was started and what it stands for.

We did it because a small group of parents and educators got together with the idea to have a school where happy children learn. Our children!

And we found a simple motto to rally around:

SAPERE AUDE – Dare to learn /dare to be wise

This quote that you can find throughout the school grounds and on our communication is generally attributed to the Roman poet from the 1st century BC, Horace. After Horace, Immanuel Kant used it and more recently so did Michel Foucault in defining works of their time. No matter what the nuance or angle, it has everything to do with “willing to be wiser” and the “will to learn”. That is why at OIS, students are encouraged to gradually become responsible for their own learning.

In the midst of the uncertainty and doubt that affects our world today we believed it was important to create a welcoming environment where our children could be happy and stimulated to make the most of their capabilities, while at the same time, made aware of the ethical values that should govern life in modern society.

On a more practical aspect but nonetheless crucial aspect, we want our students to be able to complete their education in the best higher education institutions the world has to offer if they so choose, irrespective of the area, and be better equipped to shine in an increasingly competitive world.

At OIS, we believe that schools do not replace parents in their role of educating their children but instead schools only help in the process. We know that it is crucial that the school shares the same value system. We recognize the vital importance of having the school community deeply involved and committed in the everyday life of the school. OIS aspires to achieve academic excellence that will open any door for our students.

The results achieved by our students speak for OIS. In the past year we averaged 34 points on the DP, well above the world average of 30 points. OIS DP pass rate was 97% above the 79% worldwide . And it was a very consistent cohort. Most of our students were able to get to the Universities of their first choice. 11% of 2017 graduates were offered positions at Top 100 Universities in the world and 1 in 4 of our graduates in the World Top 200. MYP results were equally impressive with one student achieving 54 and 3 more students achieved 52 points of a max score of 56 points. OIS MYP average was 43 well above WW average. All these achievements in a school that is proud of having an open access policy. These excellent scores show what can be achieved by motivated students, first-rate teachers and supportive parents.

No matter where our students will be living their lives, being it in Portugal or anywhere else in the world, we want OIS to give them the tools to be GOOD citizens of the world, citizens that share OIS’ core values:


Every year we eagerly tackle new challenges and not everything is perfect on day one. That is not necessarily bad because you get to participate in building this wonderful project and understand what it was like to be a founder student like the ones that have their
names on the board at the entry of the palace.

Education does not change the world.
Education changes people, People change the world.
Paulo Freire – Philosopher and Educator

That is what I call a good dream.

I wish you a fun and productive 2018/2019 school year at OIS!


João Paulo Girbal

President of the Board

Message from the Principal

Dear Friends,

Welcome to OIS-Oeiras International School, a school full of tradition in the Sciences, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics.

Our values, originally set by the founders, have been revisited by the entire OIS community of teachers, staff, parents, students and we are proud to share these with you:

INTEGRITY – OIS fosters an honest, honourable and fair environment.

RESPECT – OIS builds character by fostering respect for ourselves and others, regardless of beliefs and creeds, as we contribute to building a better society.

COMMITMENT & SERVICE – OIS promotes reliability and dependability in work and studies, as well as selfless actions of service in the school community and beyond.

GROWTH –  OIS respects the diverse background and needs of all members of our community. Understanding these differences and working cooperatively, each individual can reach his / her full potential.

EXCELLENCE / PERSONAL CHALLENGE – OIS celebrates excellence and honours commitment to personal growth toward one’s full potential, understanding that failure is a necessary part of the path to success.

These values complement the aims of the three International Baccalaureate (IB) programmes on offer at OIS:

-the Middle Years Programme(IB-MYP), in Years 6 to 11;

-the Diploma Programme (IB-DP), in Years 12 and 13;

-the Careers Programme (IB-CP), in Years 12 and 13;


Chari Empis


“to develop internationally-minded people who, recognizing their common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet, help to create a better and more peaceful world” [from IB-learner profile].

We are proud of our students, teachers and staff who collectively took part in this innovative process which is helping us to replace the traditional ‘imperative to memorise’ with a desire to understand, to apply concepts, to relate to global contexts, to practice transfer-of-knowledge and interdisciplinary exploration, and to inquire, communicate and reflect, within the 6 years of the IB-MYP, as expressed by Gareth Hegarty, head of the IB-MYP Assessment team in Cardiff.

We are also very proud of our Class of 2018 achievements in the IB-DP and of our IB-MYP exam results. Nevertheless, as part of a learning community we are aware that for a school there is always room for improvement and correction of former oversights, so we will analyze any past short-comings and look forward to working on these over the present academic year.

A sincere welcome to the 2018-2019 school year!


Chari Empis

Principal/IBCP Coordinator