Education: key to the future

The summer holidays are over and it is back-to-school for all of Shanghai’s international students. Welcome back!

The summer holidays are over and it is back-to-school for all of Shanghai’s international students. The year ahead promises to be tough, frustrating and yet rewarding at the same time. Welcome back!

Fostering a safe, positive classroom culture

A warm dragon welcome to all new and returning Shanghai Community International School families. We have had a fantastic start to the beginning of the 2017-18 school year. Students at all grade levels have participated in a variety of fun learning experiences focused on building strong relationships with their new classmates and teachers. Similarly, students have also been part of developing the procedures, routines and essential agreements that will govern their classroom community throughout the school year. 

Fostering a positive classroom culture, where students feel safe, happy and confident taking risks with their learning, is an essential part of a new school year. Involving children in discussions about how they will work and learn together and valuing their contributions allows students to have a voice and a choice regarding the establishment of a learning environment that meets their needs. At SCIS we strive to honor students’ ideas, opinions and learning styles. We believe every child is unique and has something valuable to contribute. Giving students voice and choice in how their learning community will function leads to a long-term commitment to ensuring the learning environment is one in which all members feel a part of.

At SCIS we are community of learners made up of students, parents, teachers and staff. I am confident that by working together and maintaining ongoing and open communication we will be able to ensure that all children are safe, happy and learning each day. 

(Liz Gale)

Liz Gale is principal of Shanghai Community International School Pudong campus’ Lower School.

Delivering a world-class, innovative curriculum for success

The British International School Shanghai was founded in Puxi in 2004, and over that time it has grown to become a well-established and highly successful learning community serving over 1,500 students and families. August is an exciting time, as vacation development programs are completed, examination results are published and the new school year begins. This year is particularly exciting as we open our new MIT-inspired centers to deliver an unrivaled STEAM curriculum for science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics.

We are particularly proud of our students, whose progress and achievements are the best testimony to our highly qualified and inspirational staff. 

Our school has a long history of academic excellence and those results are important measures of our success, alongside the many other leadership and entrepreneurial skills that our school nurtures. We are therefore very ambitious for our students and once again they have produced outstanding results. 

The graduating class of 2017 achieved an average Diploma score of over 34 points, compared with a global average of 30 points. One of our students scored the rare perfect score of 45 out of 45. A total of 18 percent of the cohort achieved marks of 40 points or better — more than treble the global average of 5 percent. 

Our students have secured places at prestigious universities worldwide, such as: Cambridge University, King’s College London, UCL, UCLA, University of Texas Austin, Manchester University and Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, among many others. We are equally pleased with our fantastic iGCSE results, with 53 percent of papers graded A-A*, compared to UK 23 percent.

However we are most proud of our students for the hard work and dedication shown in pursuing their studies. These qualities of persistence, resilience and discipline, which contributed so significantly to the excellent grades that they have achieved, will serve them well in their academic futures. 

Our collaborations with the world-renowned Juilliard performing arts center, in New York, alongside our unique collaboration with the world’s leading university for science and technology, MIT creates an unrivalled atmosphere in the British International School, Shanghai, where each student can explore their creativity, stretch their imagination and apply their understanding. We aim to produce students that will, quite simply, change the world.

So, we look forward this year to welcoming new students and returning scholars, whilst continuing to deliver on our mission to help every member of our school community be the very best that they can be. This is evident in our learning approach, where all members of our community are encouraged to “Be Ambitious.” It is this ambitious approach to learning which delivers a world-class, innovative curriculum that focuses on developing the thinking skills central to fostering life long, successful learners.

(Neil Hopkin)

Neil Hopkin is principal of British International School Shanghai, Puxi.

YCIS looking to make more progress on and off the field

On behalf of the Yew Chung International School Pudong community, I would like to welcome all students, both new and returning, for another year of excellence at YCIS. Last year, the school saw remarkable successes both in academics and athletics, and we look forward to carrying on these traditions long established in our school program. Of key importance in our philosophy is that of instilling in our students the values of “love and charity,” and one of the ways this happens is through the numerous benevolent projects the YCIS has been involved, and will continue to be mobilise here in China. Welcome back, students and parents, we are looking forward to another great year! 好好学习,天天向上!”

(Fred Runkel)

YCIS Puxi faculty and staff welcome our new and returning students, and their families, as we begin another year of exciting learning opportunities and experiences. 

We are eager to share the rich, diverse, and enhanced YCIS programs of learning with our students, which provide them with the necessary skills and understandings to engage with 21st century thinking, problem solving, and collaborative, creative, and innovative endeavor. 

By having the skills to explore and develop knowledge in a context of mindfulness, health, wellbeing, and community, YCIS students experience learning that is designed to ensure a lifelong commitment to the joy of service in making a positive difference in the world in which we live. 

We are eager to share the achievements of all of our students, but particularly our graduating class of 2017. 

We wish them all the best in their ongoing studies at top universities around the world, eager to make a difference as they continue to demonstrate high quality attributes as sensitive global citizens.

(Richard Swann)

Fred Runkel is co-principal of Yew Chung International School of Shanghai Century Park campus. 

Richard Swann is co-principal of Yew Chung International School of Shanghai Gubei campus.

WISS community ready to guide and shape your next chapter 

Dear WISS students: 

You have changed. You are different. You have grown. Your experiences this summer have shaped you and we can’t wait to hear about them!  

Did you perfect any new fidget spinner moves?

Did you get to dab with new friends?

Was there a song, a sunset, a show that inspired you?

Did you try something new? Did you succeed? Or fail? How did you respond?

The Western International School of Shanghai community is ready — to guide and shape the next chapter of your life journey. This year, you will expand your knowledge both wide and deep. For things you already know, you will go even deeper into the subject. But then, there will be brand-new information, concepts, and skills introduced to you. You will also be encouraged and challenged to make ethical and just decisions. We will look at the world together — at WISS, in Xujing, in Shanghai, in China, on this entire planet to see how we can use our knowledge to strengthen our communities and make a better world. And when you are inspired to take action, the WISS community will be here to support you.  

For those of you in Primary Years Program, we are looking forward to taking a deeper look into your Units of Inquiries as you continue to explore how this world is interconnected. 

For those in the Middle Years Program, you will be continuing your journey of discovery as you wonder and inquire into the complexity of real-world issues. For our Diploma Program students, these are the years where you will hone in on what motivates you and be challenged to think critically and deeply through your trans-disciplinary studies. And for our inaugural career-related program cohort, this year you will be able to focus on your passion in production arts or sports combining the technical skills, as well as academic rigor in these subjects.  

We believe in you and we are ready for another year of “inspiring minds to shape the future.”   

(Fiona Morris, Doreen Garrigan and Myles D’Airelle)

Fiona Morris (left), WISS Early Years principal, Doreen Garrigan (middle), Primary Years principal, and Myles D’Airelle (right), Secondary principal, greet the students.

SSIS nurturing a home away from home

I hope all the students and staff had a wonderful summer holiday with their loved ones and are all ready for another exciting academic year.

The principals, teachers and support staff have returned to school much earlier than the first day of school for students so as to ensure that everything is in place to welcome all the learners. 

This year, we will continue to strengthen on the 3 ‘E’s — enriching the teaching and learning environment, engaging the school community and enhancing the school systems and structures. We will also focus on the character development of our students — to prepare them to be successful in the real (and often chaotic) world with the correct values and perspectives. 

We are proud that SSIS is a school with students who are eager to learn and achieve, parents who are understanding and supportive, and teachers who are passionate and committed. The SSIS community has grown from strength to strength in the last 21 years and we are thankful to each member of this community for his/her contributions to the success of the school.

SSIS is truly the home away from home for all of us. Students learn and are fully engaged by our caring teachers every day, all within a safe and secure environment.

I wish every student a fruitful year of learning ahead!

(Tan Thong Howe)

Tan Thong Howe is  head of school at Shanghai Singapore International School.

Harrow looking for growth and more continuity  

Our second year has begun at Harrow. The school roll has more than doubled from last year, the sixth form, or Year 12, has opened for the first time and we also have a lot more teachers! All of our new teachers are fully aware of what the Harrow name means, in terms of qualifications and professionalism, and they join virtually all of the teachers from last year. So the school might be bigger, but there is essential continuity from our very successful first year. Our ties to our partner, Harrow School in the UK, grow ever stronger.

The school achieved excellent IGCCSE results. We have introduced the IPC in the Pre-Prep section and start A levels too.

(David Cook)

David Cook is principal of Harrow International School Shanghai.

Excitement, optimism and anticipation

It is my pleasure to welcome families to a new academic year from what I hope has been a refreshing, enjoyable and relaxing holiday. The start of a new year brings with it a sense of excitement, optimism and anticipation that I am sure the new academic year will reward handsomely.

This is the time of year when we welcome many new families into our community. Our new staff members have arrived safely and for the past two weeks have been enjoying their transition to a new life in Shanghai and the college. We are extremely privileged to be joined by such an outstanding group of teachers.

We received our latest set of external examination results during the summer holiday. Our IB results this year were once again very strong indeed. The average point score of 37.6 achieved by our students is excellent. We were thrilled that over 29.2 percent of our students gained scores of 40 or more.  

The IB is rightly recognized as the most demanding of high school qualification programs and all scores represent the outcome of two years of hard work for each individual student. These are among the best results ever achieved at Dulwich College Shanghai and I congratulate each and every student on them, and our senior school teachers who worked so hard to help the students achieve these excellent scores.

For families joining the Dulwich College Shanghai community this year for the first time, I strongly urge them to become involved with the Friends of Dulwich (FoD) parent association. There is no better way to become fully engaged with the life of the college and its numerous associated activities, such as coffee mornings, talks, markets and social gatherings, than to become engaged with FoD. 

(Damien Charnock)

Damien Charnock is principal of Dulwich College Shanghai.

Concordia celebrates 20 years of expanding and evolving

Twenty years and counting! The 2017-18 school year is underway at Concordia International School Shanghai and we are happy to have our returning families back on campus. We are also excited to welcome many new families who are joining us in time to celebrate the school’s 20th anniversary.

There have been many changes in Shanghai over the past 20 years, and Concordia is no exception. The school has continued to expand and evolve to meet the needs of our ever-growing student body. We begin this school year with enrollment at an all-time high. Over 1,250 students are now engaging in curricular and co-curricular programs that provide them opportunities to pursue their individual passions. Students are living out those passions in our state-of-the-art classrooms and purposefully designed applied learning spaces, in our fine arts complex and on our all-weather sports field. 

The Concordia faculty and staff has grown over the years, and we continue to unite around our mission to nurture our students and offer them an excellent American education here in Shanghai.

While we look back on how much we’ve grown, we are at the same time excited about what is to come. This year will be full of amazing opportunities for our school community and beyond. 

In October, Concordia will sponsor its 4th Jinqiao Mini Maker Faire; in January, we will host students from around the world as model UN joins forces with the Global Issues Network at the CISSMUN IX/GIN Asia 2018 Conference; and finally, in April, we will host the 6th International Big Data Edcon Conference. These events will be carried out in addition to the countless other sports, fine arts and community-focused events that are scheduled throughout the school year.   

We welcome you to join us as we celebrate 20 outstanding years of high-quality academic, athletic, fine arts and service programs within a diverse and supportive community.

(Mary Scott)

Mary Scott is principal of Concordia International School Shanghai.

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