Our Cognita Family

International School of Ho Chi Minh City-American Academy (ISHCMC-American Academy) is proud to be part of the global Cognita family of schools. Cognita is an extraordinary group of diverse yet connected schools joining forces in an inspiring world of education with one common purpose: building self-belief and empowering individuals to succeed.

With some 80 schools in Europe, Latin America and Asia, we employ 7,500 teaching and support staff in the care and education of more than 55,000 students. Together, our schools ensure that each student receives a rounded Cognita Education:

  • We deliver academic excellence
  • We develop character
  • We nurture a global perspective

ISHCMC-American Academy is one of three Cognita schools in Vietnam, alongside International School of Ho Chi Minh (ISHCMC) and International School Saigon Pearl (ISSP).

Together, Cognita schools provide a uniquely global education that goes beyond grades to develop all-round academic excellence – equipping young people with the confidence and resourcefulness that prepares them to grow, thrive and find their success in a fast-changing world.

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Academic Excellence

Continuous improvement is at the heart of the Cognita Way. Our Global Education Team comprises of leaders based in each of Cognita’s four global regions and together they utilise evidence – from within our group as well as external sources – to drive outstanding educational practice across all our schools.

Our global diversity fuels our innovation. We take our best and share it so everyone can improve. A key benefit of being part of the global Cognita family is the opportunity to connect and collaborate with peers across the world.

For example, our partnership with University College London (UCL) sees teachers undertake research projects linked to personalising learning for students. This work has a high impact on student progress and agency.


Wellbeing forms an integral part of a Cognita Education. We believe that every child has the right to flourish emotionally, socially, and physically and that the education we provide must help them achieve this in a sustainable and meaningful way.

The mental and physical health challenges facing children and young people today are well documented, and the evidence showing the correlation between wellbeing and learning is clear.

Research also emphasizes the importance of a proactive approach to wellbeing in schools, embedding a culture that promotes ownership and prioritization of wellbeing for all members of its community.

Cognita’s annual Global Be Well Day each September sees ISHCMC AA join together with all other Cognita schools to collapse the curriculum for an entire day to focus solely on wellbeing. Based on the contributors to wellbeing outlined in our Be Well Charter, schools enjoy a range of activities to remind their communities about what they need to do to look after their own wellbeing.


Cognita is a global system of schools. Each Cognita school offers a distinctive curriculum and approach, tailored to the individual context.

Group-wide policies and expectations are set by the parent company (Cognita Holdings Ltd.). These policies and expectations relate to standards for Student Safeguarding, Health & Safety, Financial Management, Data Protection as well as governance and responsibility for operational oversight of the regions (which is devolved to the Regional Chief Executive Officer).

Governance oversight of Student Safeguarding and Health & Safety is executed through the deployment of Independent Reviewers. The Group expects each school to ensure clear systems for listening to and responding to members of the school community, this includes use of annual Voice of the Student, Parent and Employee surveys.

Cognita has four Group senior executives:

  • Group Chief Executive Officer
  • Group Chief Finance Officer
  • Group Chief Education Officer
  • Group General Counsel

Cognita is headquartered in London.

Cognita governs and manages each school via one of four regions. Each region has its own Chief Executive Officer and regional team. Responsibility for operational oversight and governance of schools is devolved from the parent company to the Regional Chief Executive Officer. Each region has published documents that provide clarity for the delegated governance relationship between their regional team and their schools. The Regional Chief Executive Officer is accountable to the Group Chief Executive.

Each Head of School is accountable to the Regional Chief Executive Officer.

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