Issue No. 24 (1 March 2019)

1 Mar 2019

Message from the Principal

Recently, we have been reflecting a lot about the importance of our community – and in the last few weeks, we have received so many positive illustrations of this. Following the success of the ESF Run, we were privileged to host the third and final day of the ESF Festival of Music here at SIS, during which the audience were treated to an exceptional extravaganza of vocal performances from several special choirs, combining students from across all seven ESF secondary schools and sections. Music has always had the power to bring us together, and it is clear that our Music Departments at ESF are collectively in very good voice!

Last Saturday, it was a great privilege for my wife and I to attend the PTA Social Event in Causeway Bay. Parents and teachers are together united in one common objective – to do the very best we can for the students of South Island School. Circulating the room and talking with parents and teachers during this very special afternoon, it was clear to me how much synergy exists in terms of our desire to work together. CIS noted in their recent report the ‘very strong sense of mutual trust’ at SIS. Thank you for trusting us with your children.

Our community is quite unique. We live here in Hong Kong, a community that thrives through its combination of Chinese and International heritages and cultural influences, so we must always work hard to ensure that we celebrate our international diversity, whilst also fully embracing the customs and culture of our host country. Following on from our wonderful Chinese New Year celebrations, we are proud to look forward to our Chinese Drama Production, Butterfly Lovers. If you have not yet reserved tickets, please be sure to do so, as this will certainly be a performance to remember! This also comes just after we celebrated International Mother Tongue Day, and following last month’s International Evening and the Diwali Night in November. We will be looking closely at our vision for international and intercultural education going forward, in collaboration with student and parent representatives, and we look forward to further thoughts on this important element of school life in due course.

Ultimately, the ethos of our community is what binds us together. After seven months in role as Principal of South Island School, it remains a great honour for me to walk forward with our student, staff and parent communities, as we seek to articulate our next steps. Please do take the time to complete the CIS Community Survey, if you have not already done so – our community is strongest when we ensure that every voice is heard, and that every good idea is harnessed in our future plans. Thank you for all you do to support SIS.

Tom Vignoles

1 Mar 2019

Sports Bulletin – 1 March 2019

Last Saturday, the A grade boys won 1-0 vs Wah Yan in the Jing Ying Cup. Liam Doyle scored the only goal in the first half and the team were comfortable winners. They could have scored more goals to make the match easier for themselves. However, it was a good win against strong opposition. Onto the quarter-finals! MoM: Callum Beattie

On Tuesday, the junior girls played a football friendly vs IS and won 1-0. The scorer and player of the match was Charlotte Moran.

On Tuesday, we took lots of pupils to the HKSSF Athletics Competition at Wan Chai Sports Ground. This was the first day of the competition and was attended by many local and international schools. We had some excellent performances on the day with many athletes reaching the required standard to score points for the team, and many progressing to the semi-finals of their event, which will be held next Monday. Some notable performers were: Tiffanie de Vries, who won the A Grade Girls Shot Putt with 8.51m; John Lo who finished 5th in the B Grade Triple Jump with a new PB of 12.11m; and Jordan Chan who finished 7th in the A grade boys triple jump with a distance of 11.86m. Well done to these students and good luck to everyone competing next week.

On Wednesday, the C1 Grade Netball won 16-10 v Canadian School. WoM was Adeline Chew and the student choice was Sian Littlewood.

On Wednesday evening, the C Grade Boys unfortunately lost again in the HKSSF competition vs St Joseph’s. They hope to pick up their season in the next round of the ESF league next week.

On Thursday morning, the senior boys won 3-0 in the quarter final of the Jing Ying Football Tournament, thanks to goals from Paul Sauli and two from Liam Doyle. The semi-final will be played at Po Kong Village Road Park Artificial Turf Pitch at 9:30am on Sunday. All supporters are welcome!

On Thursday evening, the SIS B Grade Rugby Team drew 33-33 with HKIS. By all accounts, it was a scrappy game which SIS could, and maybe should, have won nevertheless, with lots of players missing. It was a fair result. Man of the Match was Louis Campion for a very strong defensive performance.

Well done to all of our teams who have played this week and thank you for all of your efforts.

1 Mar 2019

HKAYP News – 1 March 2019

30 Students (Years 11-13) Receive Bronze/Silver Hong Kong Awards for Young People

30 students were recognised for their Bronze or Silver HKAYP Awards on Wednesday and received congratulations from Mr Vignoles. This was followed by a pizza lunch. THE HKAYP (formally Duke of Edinburgh Award) is part of the International Award Scheme and recognises sustained commitment in skills, service, physical recreation and expeditions.

(Click on images below to enlarge and view.)


87 Year 10 students complete their HKAYP Qualifying Expedition in Sai Kung Country Park

On 22-23 February, 14 HKAYP groups completed their Bronze Assessment Expedition in Sai Kung Country Park. We had 10 groups supervised by SIS volunteer teacher/instructors, and a further 4 groups were supervised through our outward bound partnership. The students completed some long and challenging routes with a minimum distance of 20km spread over 2 days carrying full packs. All the groups also had to work on a purpose. While students are close to finishing this section of HKAYP, they still need to finish their service, skills and physical recreation sections.

(Click on images below to enlarge and view.)


“SISSTARS” Team in Outward Bound Adventure Race

A team of 4 SIS staff (including alumni teacher Ms Davey Peel) are taking part in the outward bound adventure race on 10 March which is raising funds for Outward Bound Hong Kong to fund experiential learning courses for underprivileged children and adults. This is a 16km trail running and hiking an gorging course. If you would like to support this venture by sponsoring the SIS Team, please contact Mr Morris, Ms Macintosh or Ms Stringer with your donation pledge. All offers of support greatly appreciated.

1 Mar 2019

Next week is Green Week!

Hello everyone!

In collaboration with the Bahay MaD week, The Sustainability Council is introducing SIS’s very first GREEN WEEK!

There will be 4 main activities running throughout the week from the 4-8 March:



  • This will take place on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday break in the LOWER PLAYGROUND (if it is raining, come to the area outside of The Space)
  • We will be teaching you how to plant your own edible greens with simple methods you can easily replicate at home!
  • If you would like to join in, make sure you Bring Your Own Up-Cycled plastic pot – can be made out of a yoghurt cup, or even a plastic bottle cut in half – the perfect opportunity to get creative!

Plastic Free Wednesday

  • The CEO of Urban Springs Hong Kong – a social enterprise working towards a plastic-free Hong Kong, will be coming in to talk with students about how she ran an extremely successful business campaign and how her enterprise is working towards a sustainable future.
  • This is a great opportunity for students to meet a pioneering businesswoman and ask questions about her success and mission.
  • This will take place in C57 during LUNCH

To attend the talk, sign up here:


Meatless Thursday

  • On this day, ALL hot meals will be replaced by 3 delicious vegetarian options in both the Refectory and Atrium
  • Consuming one-pound less of meat saves over 2400 gallons of water – that saves enough water to supply one person’s showers for 6 months!

Power Down Day

  • On the final day of Green Week (8 March), all electrical devices in SIS will be switched off! There will be no AC, no lights, etc.
  • Bring your own pencils and notebooks for lessons – laptops will be switched off.
  • Sports equipment will be available in the lower playground for you to use!
  • Be sure to check our progress on ENTRAK – Let’s aim to reduce our energy use by at least 10%!

BONUS: Be sure to check out our INSTAGRAM and FACEBOOK pages, where we will be posting facts, statistics, and tips to be more sustainable, made by our Sustainability Ambassadors, daily!

We are all looking forward to this event – it is the first step in achieving the ultimate goal of making Sustainability an integral part of South Island School.

The Sustainability Council

1 Mar 2019

Next week is Bahay MaD Week!

Bahay MaD Week is just around the corner from 4 March to 8 March! This year we’ve got a week packed with fun: chalk drawings, water polo (with a twist!), a water bottle throwing challenge.

Our beneficiary this year is the Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden, a non-profit organisation which aims to promote engagement with HK’s biodiversity. Please feel free to check out their website here:


We need your bottles!

To promote reuse and recycling of the plastic waste we too often blindly consume, we’d be grateful if you could donate any plastic bottles you might have before the end of next Tuesday 5 March.

  • Please DO NOT deliberately buy plastic bottles for donation.
  • Please also make sure the bottles are cleaned with water and are dry before donating.
  • Donation boxes are in the Foyer.

There will be 4 main activities running during our MaD Week:

1) Chalk drawing (4 March) – Come down to the Lower Playground at Monday break time (4 March) to showcase your artistic drawings – show us what sustainability means to you!

2) Plastic Bottle Challenge (6 March) – come and see if you can knock down all the plastic bottles in 3 throws for $10. All plastic bottles will be recycled.

3) Year 8 Inter-house Plastic Bottle Waterpolo on Friday after-school (8 March 1:30-3:15pm). It is good old water polo with a twist – wade through a sea of bottles to help your team thrash the opposition! House points will be awarded to the house with the most goals.

4) Friday (8 March) is also dress sustainable day. Clothing should be related to the theme of sustainability (e.g. blue and green), but can be also:

  • Tie Dyes!
  • Old shirts
  • Recycled clothing
  • Clothing with a green slogan, or from a green activity
  • Anything else you all can think of!

The more the better! Each dollar donated is going to an extraordinarily good cause.


Our Cooperation with Green Week

Under the common theme of sustainability, we’re running our event concurrently with the Sustainability Council’s first ever Green Week – so do support their events as well!

We can’t wait to see all of you taking part – we sincerely hope that this MaD week will be one of learning, creativity but also of fun. See you then!

Best wishes,
Head of Bahay MaD 2018 – 2019
Nicholas Ng and Minji Kwon 12B2


1 Mar 2019

Have you purchased your Butterfly Lovers tickets yet?

Dear Students and Parents,

Thank you for the tremendous support to Butterfly Lovers over the past few days. If you did not know, SIS’s first Chinese Production – Butterfly Lovers 梁祝 will be on show on the 11th, 12th and 13th of March at 7pm in the School Hall! This is also the first trilingual drama at ESF!

Tickets are selling outside the Atrium and in the Foyer. Group purchases over 10 tickets for the same performing day will receive a 20% off discount! So bring your family and friends along and come grab your tickets at break and lunchtime! Parents can also get your tickets on the SIS website.

Check out our Facebook and Instagram for more behind the scenes photos and videos!

See you soon!

Best regards,
Butterfly Lovers Marketing Team

28 Feb 2019

Professor Van Hove at SIS on molecular motors and robots

Prof. Van Hove from HKBU was at South Island School recently to deliver a fascinating lecture entitled “Invisible but Potent: Molecular Motors and Robots”. The lecture, organised by Mr. Walsh, was attended by a number of interested Y11 and Y12 students and focused on the challenges of working on the nanoscale, the reliance on collaboration between many different disciplines to allow something like a molecular motor to be built, as well as exploring the potential of using molecular motors in the future. The students that attended asked some insightful questions regarding the material presented in the lecture and hopefully they will be inspired to consider joining this type of research in the future.

27 Feb 2019

Higher Education Events – March & April 2019

For South Island School visitors please see:


Saturday and Sunday, 2-3 March

The Australian Government will host the Australia Future Unlimited Education Exhibition (AFUEE) 2019 in Hong Kong on 2-3 March at the Cordis Hotel in Mongkok. There will be nearly 30 Australian education institutions and student service providers at the exhibition to provide information on Australian study options, academic pathways, student visas, accommodation, English test and other support for international students.

For more event information, please visit the event website:


Wednesday, 6 March 2019, 6:30 – 7:30 pm
Friday, 8 March 2019, 6:30 – 7:30pm

The Group of Eight (Go8) Universities Australia will be in town during late February and early March. aec Education Consultancy (aec) is their official representatives in Hong Kong.

They are running the below seminars and information days in their office located on Unit 1802, Causeway Bay Plaza 2 in Causeway Bay.

Advance booking is requested. Please book via telephone at 2598 6166 or email to

March 6:
Thematic Seminar in Medicine
Presented by The University of New South Wales
Speakers: Professor Sean Emery, Senior Vice Dean of Faculty of Medicine
                 Johnathan Pheasant, Faculty Executive Director of Faculty of Medicine

March 8:
Pathway Program to The University of Adelaide
Presented by The University of Adelaide College
Speaker: Vivien Leung (The Representative of The University of Adelaide College)


Sunday, 10 March 2019, 1:00 – 3:00pm

CIS Hong Kong College Fair
Shangri-La Kowloon (Room Kowloon I & II)
College Fair


Friday, 15 March 2019, 5:00pm @ ESF Centre

Mock MMI for Years 12-13 ESF students by CUHK Professor Albert Li (Assistant Dean (Student Affairs)) and Professor of Paediatrics.

Please see or e-mail your counsellor to sign up!


Thursday, 11 April 2019, 7:00pm @ ESF Centre

Talk by the University of Cambridge at ESF Centre. Year 12 students are prioritised. Please see your counsellor by Friday, 8 March 2019 to sign up.


Looking for volunteers!

It’s almost that time of year again – the South Island School Careers Fair is but a few months away and we wanted to reach out to those of you who have been generous enough to have worked with us before, and also to those of you who have yet to join our event. The South Island School Career Fair will be taking place on Friday 10 May, with a tentative timing of 10:30am to 1:30pm. We have decided to pull the fair forwards slightly this year based on previous feedback, helping to ensure student numbers are more consistent throughout the event. I have attached a link to a brief google form for you to Sign Up. If you are able to support our event again please take a minute to fill it in, and pencil in the date.

From both the students and careers team at South Island, a huge thank you for your support. We look forward to hosting you on campus!

Sign-up Form:

Please contact Mr. Adam Cowling if you have any questions at

26 Feb 2019

International Mother Tongue Day 2019 at SIS

On 21 February, we celebrated International Mother Tongue Day with a range of activities promoting the incredible linguistic diversity and cultural heritage of our students and staff. All Chinese, French and Spanish lessons that day focused on celebrating students’ home languages, students brought in objects representing their culture to discuss in class, there was a Cantonese Drama production for some students and there were poster and video competitions as well (the winners of which will be receiving some great prizes!). All in all it was a great day…bring on Mother Tongue Day 2020!

Students brought things that represented their own languages and cultures:

25 Feb 2019

Digital Literacy Updates

I have had lots of conversations with parents over the last 12 months about the pros and cons of Fortnite and subsequently wanted to keep the community informed about the growing online movement toward the game Apex Legends. This may be a game that your son or daughter begins to play in the near future. You can find out more by reading the following article:

In addition, a recent Year 10 media survey revealed that we are beginning to see a change in the social media apps used by our younger students. As well as old favourites like Instagram and Snapchat, Discord has appeared as a popular form of social media in Year 7. You can find out more about Discord and other emerging apps by reading the following:

Iain Williamson
Digital Literacy Coordinator

25 Feb 2019

ESF Festival of Music 2019

On Thursday 14 February, the three-day ESF Festival of Music culminated with a spectacular vocal concert at South Island School. As Shakespeare wrote, ‘If Music be the food of love, play on…’ and certainly, on Valentine’s Day, the audience left at the end wanting the singers and band to play on! This was an impressive collaboration between all of the ESF Secondary schools: it is clear that music has the power to unite us together and we were certainly united in our admiration for the work of our extremely talented students and music teachers. If you missed the festival this year, do not make the same mistake again in 2020!

(Photo credit: ESF)