Principal's Blog

The hosting of colleagues from two of our sister schools took centre stage this week, with those travelling in from Thailand keen to learn more about provision for students who engage in English as an additional language and those fresh from the UK keen to engage on music and performance. Also able to reflect upon the uplifting launch of our Secondary School Selection programme with parents of students in Year 4, we now have attendance at an international schools fair tomorrow on our horizon.

Speaking as part of a panel on curriculum, assessment and school selection, I look forward to reconnecting with colleagues across the region and to engaging with parents keen to secure the very best available primary education for their young children.

Next week will see the delivery of our second parent workshop under the title Five Ways to Develop Mathematical Fluency. If you haven't yet had the opportunity to register for this or any of the other upcoming sessions, you can do so here.

Despite the inclement weather, spirits were high this week thanks to the delivery of our first campus tour of the new academic year, the launch of a refreshed parent workshop schedule and a double helping of assembly fun, courtesy of Year 5 and 6.

Next week, we can look forward to hosting guests from two of our sister schools, with colleagues from Thailand and the UK landing on Tuesday and Friday, respectively. We'll pivot upon an interaction with the School Management Committee and close with attendance at an International Schools Fair hosted by friends at the South China Morning Post. Parents of students in Year 4 will also have the opportunity to luxuriate in the company of School Partnerships Manager, Chelly Tsang, at the launch of our Secondary School Selection presentation after school on Thursday.

The arrival of a black rainstorm brought the week to a rather abrupt conclusion - all credit goes to the team on campus who have been working tirelessly through the day to minimise the damage caused by flooding. We very much hope to have all facilities back online for a fresh start on Monday morning. My thoughts go to the many families who will have been affected by floods in the hope that they find themselves safe and well.

With the Performance Management cycle in full motion, attention will be drawn towards the process of target setting next week. We can also look forward to hosting a rescheduled class-led assembly hosted by Year 6 before Year 5 take to the Auditorium stage on Friday.

Next week also features a first campus tour of the new school year - and I understand that I can look forward to greeting a significant group of parents at 10:30 on Wednesday morning, just a few hours prior to the launch of our new parent workshop series.

Having spent the first three days of the week in Thailand for the 20th anniversary of Shrewsbury International School Bangkok Riverside, I am able to reflect upon a remarkable celebration of educational impact, belonging and camaraderie. 

With preparation for the imminent arrival of Typhoon Saola dominating the remainder of the week, I hope that Monday finds all members of our community safe and well and look forward to catching up over coffee first thing.

Next week will also see the initiation of our Performance Management cycle, following a recent staff meeting. Planning will see the formation of robustly challenging target sets, high expectations signalling our faith in an exceptionally talented group. We'll close with our first class assembly of the season - Year 6 are sure to delight.

Routines quickly established, our first week of the new school year has been as thrilling as was anticipated. Having taken time to reflect upon the incredible progress made by students in recent years, I feel rich with ambition for the term ahead.

Set to feature the expansion of our Advanced level Chinese programme to allow for study to be undertaken seven times per week, the launch of a bespoke service programme in partnership with Plastic Free SeasBox of HopeHandsOn Hong Kong and ImpactHK, and the delivery of an exciting and broadly accessible schedule of parent workshops, we have a great deal to look forward to.

I'll spend the first half of next week with colleagues in Bangkok, before returning to deliver a second consecutive assembly on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Our first coffee morning of the year with parents is also on the horizon.

Induction concluded, I am enormously excited about the prospect of welcoming families back onto campus tomorrow morning for orientation ahead of the start of a new academic year on Monday. An enriching week of great endeavour, our outstanding team are as prepared as they are enthused for the journey ahead of them.

Next week will see relationships reignited and routines revived. A first meeting with the School Management Committee will also feature, as will the launch of an assembly sequence centring upon the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, before I make preparation for an early partnership visit to our sister schools in Bangkok.

With a new group of teachers safely ensconced, their induction is now well underway, and I write fresh from an extended campus tour and first walk through our digital drives.

Following brunch tomorrow, Monday and Tuesday will allow for further exploration of the many unique characteristics and priorities that make a Shrewsbury education so special, before the return of the wider team on Wednesday in preparation for student orientation on Saturday and the start of a new school year on Monday 21st August. Excitement now building, we can also look forward to the imminent launch of several new initiatives that arise as a direct result of a robust strategic intention. Parents keen to learn more about our tireless ambition can do so here.

Back in Hong Kong following a UK-based summer break, I am now gearing up for the induction of staff prior to the arrival of a new school year and the launch of several new strategic initiatives on Monday 21st August.

Attention will soon be drawn to the delivery of a bespoke service programme, the refinement of arrangements for Advanced level Chinese language learners and a new sequence of parent workshops. They will lead us neatly towards the undertaking of a second community wide survey and the arrival of representatives from the Council of International Schools for the undertaking of an assessment for accreditation. Further details will follow within a letter to parents, scheduled for delivery next week.

A final Friday in the UK saw us land in London, just a few days before our return journey to Hong Kong. This time next week, I'll be back in the office, catching up with the operational team and ensuring that everything is in place for the arrival of a group of colleagues keen to hit the ground running.

The start of a new school year is now on the horizon. Opening with a Saturday orientation for new class groups, I can't wait to reengage.

Fresh from an impromptu meeting with Shrewsbury Riverside Principal, Rob Millar, at Oxford Natural History Museum and a visit to Warwick Castle, we now look forward to a few days in Devon and a week in London prior to our return to Hong Kong.

The week has also allowed for reconnection with our Marketing and Admissions teams on a small number of engagement initiatives, an induction programme for new arrivals now complete. August now lies tantalisingly on the horizon.

Den building, strawberry picking and plenty of time on the monkey bars down at the local playground have all featured within an action packed first week back in the UK. Rather more pragmatically, the finalisation of an induction programme for a talented new group of colleagues scheduled to join our ranks in August has dominated liaison with colleagues in Hong Kong - ensuring a healthy balance between directed and social time will be key to their successful landing.

Following the end of term and the crowning of Balsam as our House Champions, I have been back in the office with the Operational Team this week. And it appears as though they will have their hands full given the volume of families coming into the region over the summer months.

With Hong Kong opening up again, I've taken the opportunity to head home for a few weeks. Keen to take in as many of the sights as possible whilst here, my return will come a few days prior to the arrival of a new group of colleagues scheduled to join our academic team in August.

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