The British School in The Netherlands: Launching a lifelong love of learning

The British School in The Netherlands: Launching a lifelong love of learning


On December 8, 2022, at roughly 12:09 pm, students, staff, a group of parents and members of the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) gathered together in a Year 6 classroom at Junior School Leidschenveen (JSL), The British School in The Netherlands, counting down the minutes, maybe even seconds, in excited anticipation.

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After months of preparing for this very moment, the satellites, mounted on the school for the occasion, were primed for a direct radio link between the amateur radio station set up in the classroom and the amateur station on board the International Space Station (ISS).

The clock ticked to 12:11, and the room filled with the sounds of static, a beep, the radio operator’s call sign, and then, “Do you read? Over.” A breathless second passed, and the clear voice of NASA Astronaut Josh Cassada (Captain, U.S. Navy, PhD) greeted the school, “Welcome aboard the International Space Station!”.

JSL in space

After weeks of learning about space and satellite radio communication through classroom activities, guest speakers from the European Space Agency, European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC) and TU Delft, rocket launching competitions, singing and performing space-themed songs, and more, the students’ learning culminated in a successful live contact with an astronaut orbiting the Earth on the International Space Station!

For approximately eleven minutes (the duration that the ISS is within range of the satellite link), space exploration was not theoretical; it was real and, via satellite link, brought to life inside the students’ own school.

“We feel so proud to be part of this school. Thank you so much for providing our kids with this wonderful, once-in-a-lifetime experience!” - BSN Junior School parent

16 British School students ranging in age from 4 to 11, dressed in their “JSL in Space” t-shirts designed for the occasion by Year 6 students during Enterprise Week, confidently asked Dr Cassada their prepared questions to learn what it is like to live and work in space.

“As the children spoke, tears welled up as I saw their confidence grow and amazement as astronaut Josh Cassada responded to their questions.” - Year 6 Teacher, Barbara van Duijne

Exploring new horizons

Since its establishment in 1931, The British School in The Netherlands (BSN) - an international school of over 2.100 students from nearly 90 different nationalities spread over Junior and Senior campuses in 2022 – has been dedicated to providing an education that inspires and prepares its students to become successful global citizens.

"I can’t think of a more exciting opportunity for a young person than being able to talk live to an astronaut on the International Space Station! Events like this can help to spark a lifelong love of learning in our students." - BSN CEO Heath Monk

While it is not every day that students have the chance to interact with an astronaut in space, providing experiences and opportunities both inside and outside the classroom that capture students’ imagination and engage them in their learning is a hallmark of the education offered at the BSN.


At the heart of BSN’s mission is the experience that every child in their care will have during their time at the school. The environment, school culture and personalised approach to teaching and learning encourage students to be curious, pursue their interests and ultimately spark a lifelong love of learning.

Launch your child’s love of learning at the BSN

The BSN Admissions Team looks forward to welcoming you to their school's warm, engaging community.

The Admissions Team understands the importance of finding the right school for your child or children. They are there to make this decision an easy and positive experience. The team is excited to share what the school has to offer you and your child.

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Book a tour or take a virtual tour of the schools and the facilities; call the Admissions Team at +31 (0)70 315 4077 or email

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