Issue 10 2023

Language School of the Year 2023 - Netherlands When it comes to the mastering of the English language, Think Smart English (TSE) is the company to trust. Offering English language training courses that fit every need, the business has been established for almost eight years and consists of a small team of three based in the Netherlands and one teacher and board member who resides in India. The team often work with small groups of primary age children and offer support for students in exam training from high school through to university age, as well as detailed programmes for teachers, employees, and expats. Although a newly established business, the founder of TSE possesses a wealth of industry experience in the United Kingdom, and as a result, has the knowledge to nurture those who want to build upon their communication, grammar, business, or academic skills through language training. This is in addition to the head of the company being a valued member of the Society of Education and Training (SET), and the firm itself being proudly partnered with a range of organisations, such as ETS Global, BKSB, & Anglia, and collaborating with a host of others, Brainport, Kempenkind, Salto, and High Tech Campus. The company’s status as an Anglia partner means official certificates and diplomas from the UK are offered to those who complete courses, ranging from beginners to Masters C2 level. Furthermore, these certificates are recognised worldwide, so clients can celebrate their achievements wherever in the world they go next. This global approach will be further exemplified when the company finishes work on the E-learning courses and certificates it is planning to deliver soon, providing an even greater flexibility for its clients wherever they are based. The vision of TSE is for all foreign participants, whether students, company employees, teachers, or expats, to be able to achieve their full potential and succeed in their language needs to be inclusive and thrive in Dutch society. At TSE, the needs of clients are always put first, every school, employee, student, or expat will start at a different level and have different needs as the process progresses, and all courses are therefore tailor-made, and workshops are constantly adjusted to account for how fast progress is being made. Following a workshop or course ultimately means ‘work in progress’, and the team will do whatever it takes to deliver a high standard of completed work. TSE’s strategy to success is a commitment to planning every workshop and course in detail with the school or company, to anticipate their unique needs by using their vision and mission as guidance, as well as learning and understanding their personal requirements. Workshops and courses are started year-round to fit the convenience and suitability of the teacher and clientele, with high levels of flexibility available regarding content and speed, so things can be taken as fast or as slow as suits a client’s personal needs. Through the team’s hard work and tireless efforts, a high retention and pass rate is achieved across all examinations. TSE always goes that extra mile to ensure all students and clients reach whatever it is they set out to achieve, maximising their potential in a future employment or education setting. Most of all, it is the goal of the organisation to help the community improve on its necessary skills, whether this be the knowledge and understanding of the Dutch or English languages, the prospects of the community are greatly improved through the possessing of this well-respected skill. What distinguishes TSE from many of the other training institutions in the same field is working with native speaking tutors. Upon enrolling on a TSE course, clients know they are in good hands, with the team having maintained a 100% pass rate in academic exams for the last eight years, the entire lifespan of the business so far. There are absolutely no plans to slow down or diverge from this promise, so whatever skill level a person starts at, they are essentially guaranteed to be a part of this perfect success rate in the future. TSE offers clients a range of courses at different levels, including the recent new course, ‘Dutch for Expats’, which was introduced in order to assist with the integration process of expats coming to live in the Netherlands. This course was designed and developed in accordance with the guidance and to the specification of Brainport, and it is delivered in three blocks, with each clocking in at approximately ten hours. A further six Dutch courses are available, with each lasting fifteen hours. These are A2, A2+, B1, and B1+. A more extensive range of English courses are available, with twelve currently listed on the TSE website. These range from different lengths of parent-teacher workshops, to business, director, and exam training courses, with some of these being as compact as six hours long, through to extensive programmes that are three or six months long. This serves to underpin that there really is a course out there for anybody, whatever the amount of time they have available to spare. TSE was also awarded the 2021/2022 award for Best English School by the Corporate Livewire Netherlands Prestige Awards, which recognises the achievements of small and medium-sized businesses that have proven to be the best in the market over that twelve-month period. Recently, the company’s primary students achieved overall first place in a competition between nine EU countries, reaching second and third place out of 63,500 participants at primary level, and the same positions out of 128,0000 for Level 1. Client reviews speak for themselves, and the small team are like family, communicating daily to ensure a personalised service is delivered and the highest calibre of teaching is being received. If hesitating whether to take the plunge of learning a new language or improving your current language skills, there is something TSE can provide that will satisfy your language needs, leaving you with an invaluable, life-improving skill. Contact Details Contact: Kirstie Wimbles Company: Think Smart English Web Address: Think Smart English’s focus is to provide tailored language solutions across both the English and Dutch language, which is achieved by studying the vision and mission of the school or company it is entering and assessing the departmental roles and responsibilities. This is in addition to a strong presence in primary and secondary schools, as well as providing assistance available for university students, professionals, and teachers, to name just a few. We speak with Kirstie Wimbles to find out more about the fantastic work done by the organisation.