The ISA Story: Reimagining Education

A Teacher's Journey From the Classroom to the Cloud

Welcome to the International School of America!   I'm Brian Tupper, the founder of ISA and developer of the ISA Library.  As a lifelong educator, I've always been fascinated by the power that learning has to transform lives. But my journey from a traditional classroom to the helm of the International School of America (ISA) wasn't a straight path. It was a winding road filled with challenges, discoveries, and ultimately, a deep-rooted passion for reimagining education. 

Education is at a Crossroads

The traditional model, with its rigid structure and one-size-fits-all approach, no longer serves the needs of today's diverse learners. That's why I founded ISA, a learning community built on the principles of kindness, personalization, innovation, and parent/child collaboration. This page will explore the unique ISA Learning Model, a groundbreaking approach that empowers parents and their children to take ownership of their education and thrive in an ever-changing world

As a teacher, I would tell my students, "Show Me, Don't Tell Me..."  This page is dedicated to every one of those students who inspired me.

Roots In Education

Growing up, my kitchen table was a hub for educational discussions. My mother, a beloved caregiver for teachers' children before starting Heart of the Hamptons, would host daily gatherings where educators shared their triumphs and challenges. My father, a dedicated school board member for 13 years, offered a glimpse into the policies that shaped our local schools. Surrounded by passionate educators and lively conversations, my brother and I developed a deep appreciation for the power of learning to transform lives. This foundation inspired both of us to successfully pursue a career in education, eager to make a positive impact on students.




Frustration with an Inconsistent, Limited Learning Model

My initial teaching experiences in Florida, however, revealed a system fraught with limitations. As the pyramid diagram below  illustrates, the traditional learning model places decision-making power far from the students it aims to serve. State politicians and standardized testing often dictate curriculum choices, leaving little room for customization or addressing individual needs. Big curriculum companies and boards of education further constrain teachers, leaving them with limited autonomy to truly tailor their instruction. This top-down approach stifles creativity, leaving teachers, parents and students feeling powerless. 


Explore and Discover - Teaching and Learning Abroad


Frustrated by the limitations of the traditional education system in the United States, I sought out new learning opportunities abroad.  My international teaching journey began in South Korea, where I helped launch Korea International School on Jeju Island and pioneered innovative teaching methods using technology. As a Day One adopter of Google Classroom, the first international Nearpod Pionear, and a Khan Academy Ambassador, I embraced these platforms to create engaging and personalized learning experiences for my students. This early adoption of educational technology, which has continued to evolve and expand over the past decade, allowed me to tailor instruction to individual needs, foster collaboration, and inspire a love of learning. I was recognized for my work with two Faculty Global Leader awards and became a finalist for the International Teacher of the Year Award.


Saying Good-Bye to the Classroom


After five successful years, I transitioned to Baku Oxford School in Azerbaijan, where I taught the British Cambridge curriculum and further honed my expertise in global education. I've always believed in the power of exploration to unlock a child's potential. "I explore so you will discover" has been my guiding principle, leading me to teach diverse groups of children around the world – from rural and inner-city Jacksonville to the Korea International School Jeju and at Baku Oxford School, Azerbaijan, located right between Russia and Iran. I have always been fearless in my pursuit of excellence in education, and now, that same passion fuels the ISA Library, a place where every student can chart their own course of discovery, guided by their interests and curiosity. These experiences solidified my belief in the power of personalized learning and inspired me to create the International School of America, a virtual school that transcends borders and empowers students worldwide.

Founding International School of America 

 The global pandemic presented both challenges and opportunities. As traditional classrooms closed, I saw a chance to bring the personalized, technology-enhanced learning model I had developed in Korea to students worldwide. International School of America (ISA) was born, creating virtual classrooms that connected students from diverse backgrounds and fostered a truly global learning community. As the world began to reopen, I realized that the traditional education system was not serving all learners, and I was determined to bring the transformative power of ISA to families everywhere.



Learning on Demand - Building The Netflix for Education


The culmination of this journey was the development of a "Netflix-style" approach to learning, an on-demand learning service accessible through a single Google for Education login. This innovative platform integrates resources like Nearpod, Flocabulary, Khan Academy, and Defined Careers, creating a personalized learning hub for each student. Similar to a streaming service, students can easily access their
individual profiles, track their progress, and explore a vast library of educational content tailored to their interests and needs. This streamlined approach to online learning empowers students to take ownership of their education and learn at their own pace, anytime and anywhere.



The ISA Learning Model: Your Child's Education, Your Way


 The ISA learning model is a radical departure from the traditional educational pyramid. As the Venn diagram illustrates, it places the parent and child at the center, with the ISA Library serving as the hub for their collaborative learning journey. We empower parents to become active participants in their child's education, providing them with the tools, resources, and support they need to guide their child's learning. Together, parents and children can personalize the learning experience, explore diverse subjects, and develop the skills necessary for success in the 21st century.



From Vision to Reality: The Evolution of ISA Library

 For nearly a decade, the International School of America has envisioned a revolutionary approach to education, one that empowers students to take charge of their learning journey. Today, that vision is a reality with the ISA Library. We invite you to watch this video showcasing the original concept of ISA Library: Innovative Scholars and see how it has evolved into the comprehensive, personalized learning platform it is today. Witness the passion, dedication, and innovation that have shaped the ISA Library into a transformative educational experience for students worldwide.

A World of Experience, One Learning Model:

The Collaborative Creation of ISA

The ISA Learning Model isn't just a theoretical construct; it's the culmination of years of practical experience and collaboration. Throughout my career as an international educator, I've had the privilege of working alongside brilliant teachers from around the world. Their expertise, diverse perspectives, and deep understanding of global education have been invaluable in shaping the ISA approach. By incorporating their insights and best practices, I've been able to create a truly international learning experience that empowers students to thrive in a globally connected world.

Brian Tupper

Brian Tupper

Founder

International Education experience in the USA, South Korea, and Azerbaijan
Current Location: Southampton, NY

Driven by a lifelong passion for education and a desire to improve its quality, I embarked on a global journey to explore innovative teaching methods. Witnessing the transformative power of personalized learning and cutting-edge educational technology, I founded the International School of America (ISA) to offer a world-class virtual learning experience for everyone. As a Khan Academy Ambassador and Nearpod Pioneer, I've combined my expertise with a global network of educators to create a unique, affordable, and kindness-centered curriculum that puts students first.

Meet the ISA Academic Advisors


Aliza Akmal

Aliza Akmal

ISA Learning Leader


Studied in Malaysia, Thailand, Pakistan, International School of America 
ISA Library Research & Development

Current Location: Karachi, Pakistan

Anita Farrington

Anita Farrington

College and Career Counselor Advisor


Former Dean of Students at NYU

Current Location: Sag Harbor, NY

Tauek

Tauek Kang

Technology Advisor


Studied at Korea International School, Attending Stanford University - Majoring in AI

Current Location: Stanford, CA, USA

Sarah

Sarah Cornelius

Administrative Advisor


International Education experience in the USA, Myanmar, Costa Rica, Kuwait, South Korea, China, Romania

Current Location: Bucharest, Romania

Nick Harris

Nick Harris

Model United Nations Advisor


International Education experience in the USA, Japan, South Korea

Current Location: Jeju Island, South Korea

Michael Burke

Michael Burke

STEAM Advisor


International Education experience in Vietnam, South Korea, Mexico City, Hong Kong

Current Location: Hong Kong

Lucas Oren

Lucas Oren

STEAM Advisor


International Education experience in the USA and South Korea

Current Location: South Korea

Michael and Lin Ates

Michael Ates

Global Perspectives Advisor


International Education experience in South Korea, Egypt, Niger, USA

Current Location: Milton, Florida

Michael Keogh

Michael Keogh

ELA Advisor


Educated students in the USA, South Korea, Mexico

Current Location: Mexico City, Mexico

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