According to Eaquals director, Lou McLaughlin, the three day event is a chance for members to catch up with each other, and the industry landscape. Crucially, it also gives non-members an opportunity to learn about Eaquals and the benefits membership and resources can bring.
“It helps to share the expertise we can build on”
“[The conference] plays a very big role in that it’s an opportunity for members to get together, but also non-members. I think it’s that influx and that mix that keeps everything very fresh,” McLaughlin told The PIE News.
“Having the people who come each year is great because they can bring the knowledge and then share it among the newer members and people attending for the first time… it helps to share the expertise we can build on,” she continued.
Along with success in schools partnerships, Eaquals has increased the number of industry bodies it partners with.
In the last 12 months, various levels of agreement have been struck with three new groups.
In the UK, a memorandum of cooperation was signed with English UK, which is the national body for English language centres, and promotes the sector internationally.
Across the Channel, Eaquals have signed an MoC with Groupement FLE. FLE represents schools teaching French in France, to students, businesses and the public. Eaquals stated in its yearly Trustees report that both organisations “look forward to fruitful cooperation”.
Thirdly, the body has signed an MoC with AQUEDUTO, a charity focusing on the quality assurance framework of online and blended learning courses. Its members include Eaquals members, such as International House London and NILE language school.
Other areas of the organisation also experienced growth, with the Eaquals Members Fund 2019 launch. The 2018 initiative, the third iteration, helped 10 members organise local events with the assistance of €1,000 grants.
The Prague conference also hosted the inaugural presentation of the Teacher Award Scheme, which “recognises the hard work ad dedication” of one outstanding language teacher. Winner of the 2018 prize, and €1,000 prize was Lilian Borboudaki of the Doukas School in Greece.