We would like to extend a very warm welcome to Reach Out Cairo - IH Cairo, a language school based in the capital of Egypt, which has affiliated to International House!
"Joining IH during Covid means a lot for us," said Esraa Abouelnasr at Reach Out Cairo - IH Cairo. "We are no longer one of the schools that's teaching languages in Cairo, now; we belong to a bigger family of professionals and experts in the industry who can support and benefit each other to help the business not only to survive but also to keep providing high-quality services."
To find out more about Reach Out Cairo - IH Cairo and to introduce them to the wider IH network of schools, we asked them some questions below.
Tell us about your school! How did it all start?
Reach Out Cairo started in 2008 as a language exchange hub, in which foreigners from different nationalities who visited Egypt for a long term could learn Arabic and teach their mother tongue language to Egyptian students. As a believer that languages are the road map of a culture, we made a further step in the business, and started offering professional and academic teaching through qualified teachers. Years later, we added more courses and programmes to expand our services offered to customers, which included teacher training programmes, exams preparation programs, business English programmes, and conversation clubs.
All our teachers are CELTA and DELTA certified who are keen on improving our curriculum, lesson plans and activities, and focusing on enhancing the learning journey.
Currently, we are a Cambridge Assessment centre and IELTS exam center, and have partnered with one of the most famous e-learning platforms in English teaching.
What types of programmes do you offer?
Our products include a massive variety of English teaching programmes and courses, and on-site activities. We offer English language (Standard, Intensive and Private Courses) in general courses, conversation courses along with business English courses, and English for specific purposes. Also, we offer IELTS and TOEFL exam preparation courses.
Over the years, we realised the increasing market need for teaching training programmes with a low number of suppliers in the Egyptian market. Hence, we decided to start offering teacher training programmes in the Egyptian market, and now we are internationally recognised CELTA Teacher Training (CELTA & DELTA). Also, we offer a whole range of teacher training programmes, workshops, and IH certificates for teachers.
IH Cairo is also a certified Partner for Voxy in Egypt, KSA, UAE and Malaysia, in which we offer e-learning solutions to corporates and individuals.
In 2021, we introduced Arabic language courses and programmes as some of our new courses, in addition to offering Young Learner and Very Young Learner programmes and summer camps
Tell us more about your school campus.
We are located in Dokki, which is almost in central Cairo. The school is near most of the famous sights in Egypt. It is only 5 minutes’ walk from the river Nile, 15 minutes’ walk from the Egyptian Museum, the Opera House and Cairo Tower, and 45 minutes away from the Pyramids and Sphinx. Also, the school is surrounded by the most famous hotels and different cuisine restaurants. The Al Dokki area is reachable by all public transportation, including buses, metro, taxi, etc. The school has two gardens, one of them is used for outdoor events and a cafeteria in the open air.
The school is equipped with a computer lab and library for research purposes, and all the classrooms are equipped with computers, TV screen and audio system that teachers use during lessons. Also, the school has a big hall for small conferences and events.
Why did you decide to join IH?
During the past few years, Reach Out Cairo has proved itself as one of the leading schools in the area in teaching languages to adults, and in teacher training programmes. Therefore, we knew that it is the right time to re-position our school and join one of the largest networks of independent schools in the world, expand our programmes, and be part of something bigger such as IH World.
Our vision is to inspire foreign language and intercultural competence in people of all ages and nationalities by being the #1 Teacher Training Hub and a major educational force in English Language Training in the Middle East. Being IH Cairo gives us exposure to the IH network of knowledge and expertise which will help us to move forward towards this vision faster and to stand out from competition.
Finally, being part of IH World will support us in keeping our promises and provide our students and trainees with the most up-to-date courses and certificates with high-standards, broadening education, and building communities across cultures.
What is key for a school especially in times of Covid? Are there any other lessons learnt that you would like to share?
During Covid, we had to move our classes from face-to-face to 100% online. Although this initially faced resistance from some students, our teachers were very collaborative and creative in creating interactive lesson and activities to fit the online teaching. Covid taught us that learning is a continuous process and that change is the only constant. Therefore, we moved towards diversifying our products and programmes to include face-to-face courses, fully online courses, blended courses, and an e-learning platform for self-study.
For a business to survive the business needs to have more than one revenue stream and the management team needs to have an open and innovative mindset to overcome and manage crisis.