Independent Association of Prep Schools
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The Independent Association of Prep Schools (IAPS) is a professional membership association for independent preparatory schools in the UK and worldwide. The association's headquarters are in Leamington Spa in Warwickshire, England. IAPS currently has more than 600 member schools in the UK and overseas, including schools in Singapore, New York, the Middle East and a growing number in Kenya. IAPS is a constituent member of the Independent Schools Council.
Schools which apply for membership are inspected by the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) to ensure they meet stringent standards of membership. The Association covers a wide range of schools: single sex, co-ed, day, full and flexi-boarding, those with particular religious affiliations or with dedicated provision for children with special educational needs. Many member schools are independent prep schools while others are known as "tied-house" or junior schools, where they have an attached senior school.
The work of IAPS is directed by various committees made up of elected current heads leading on current priorities. The is to ensure that current heads help develop the association's policies through the committees to which they are elected (e.g. Education Committee and Sport Committee).
A new chairman is elected annually by the IAPS Council, and any member of the association can stand as a candidate for election. One of the Chairman's main responsibilities is compiling the speakers and format of the IAPS Annual Conference, which is held towards the end of September.
David Hanson is the Chief Executive of IAPS. The current Chairman (2014/15) is Mark Brotherton, Headmaster of Giggleswick Junior School in Yorkshire. The Vice-Chairman is Daphne Cawthorne and the Chairman Elect (Chairman from September 2015) will be subject to approval at the IAPS Annual Conference 2015.  The Vice Chairman Elect for 2014/15 (Vice Chairman for 2015/16) is Helen Skrine.
From 2015, the chairmanship of the association will change. The current Chairman Elect will become the Executive Chairman in September 2015 and will continue in this capacity until August 2018. The responsibility for directing the IAPS Annual Conference will be that of the Vice Chairman, who will continue to be elected annually.
Founded as a professional organisation in 1892, IAPS became a business in 1923 and merged with the Association of Headmistresses of Preparatory Schools in 1981. It was also once known as the Incorporated Association of Preparatory Schools. In October 1991, IAPS relocated its headquarters in Kensington to Leamington Spa.
It was rebranded as The Independent Association of Prep Schools (replacing the word "Preparatory" with "Prep" in 2010) but its legal name is, in fact, its acronym, IAPS.
Since 1956, IAPS has coordinated the Harrow History Prize, an annual history competition for children at British preparatory schools.
IAPS has a partnership with external publication, Attain Magazine. The magazine has a print-run of 45,000 and is distributed to parents through IAPS member schools. Attain has seen national coverage of its articles, including a Times Educational Supplement (TES) article on the magazine's interview with Lord Baker, a Daily Telegraph article based on a head teacher's column in Attain and another Daily Telegraph article looking at how school gardens in IAPS schools give children a sense of sustainability.
Other national coverage includes:
- Independent Schools Council
- Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference
- Girls' Schools Association
- Independent Schools Association
- Association of Governing Bodies of Independent Schools
- Council of British International Schools
- "ISC Members and Affiliate Organisations". ISC Website.
- "About ISI". Independent Schools Inspectorate Website. ISI. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
- "About Staff". IAPS Website. IAPS.
- "Turn 'Worst 100' into UTCs, says Lord Baker". Times Educational Supplement. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
- "Parents failing to make their children "bully-proof", warns head". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
- "School gardens: how to cultivate a sense of purpose". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 11 May 2013.