The International Association of Laboratory Schools (IALS) unites laboratory schools from the whole world, in the USA, Canada, Puerto Rico and Japan in particular. Delegates from member schools meet during annual international conferences where they present outcomes of their home schools. Furthermore, they share their experience on an international level and enter into new partnerships which helps the schools to accomplish the mission of the IALS. The three-day meeting starts with a plenary member school session and is followed by lectures, workshops and visits to laboratory schools. New members of the IALS were introduced during the 2016 conference. Those were the Czech Republic (represented by the school Labyrinth), Republic of South Africa, Jamaica, and China.
The model of laboratory schools has been promoted for the first time a hundred years ago by an American philosopher, educationalist, and psychologist John Dewey. Laboratory schools make an advantage of the affiliation to universities, focus on transferring educational research and its practical application at schools, as well as their propagation to more schools.
Labyrinth identifies with the philosophy and approach to children of The School at Columbia University. It is a K-8 laboratory school, which means from the kindergarten to the eighth grade. It was established in 2003 and it has more than 500 students. The core principles of the school are: co-operation, community education, respect to diversity, and including innovations in teaching and learning. The School at Columbia is closely affiliated to Columbia University and they work together on many levels.