30 Jun 2023

Monthly Newsletter (June 2023)

>  Principal’s Message
>  Upcoming Events & Information
>  Notable Events
Phase Year 7-9
Phase Year 10-11
Phase Year 12-13
> Student Celebrations
June Weekly Newsletters
Key Dates & Reminders

Principal’s Message

Dear Parents and Guardians,

We made it.  And what a year it has been. Today, during our final assembly of the year with the theme Around the World: World Tour, I shared with our students a metaphor that resonated with me: being a principal is like being a pilot of a plane.

Just like a pilot, a principal is responsible for guiding and leading the school community towards its destination. We navigate through various challenges, adapt to changing conditions, and strive to ensure a smooth and successful flight for everyone on board.  With all the community has been through the past few years, this year was filled with examples of how adaptable we are!

As the plane took off in August, our mission was to connect our community again and focus on making the year a positive experience for all our students.  During the journey, bonds formed among the passengers and crew. Similarly, our school community has come together, building strong relationships and a sense of belonging. We have celebrated achievements, supported one another through various events, activities, and initiatives, and created memories that will last a lifetime.

However, as all flights must eventually come to an end, passengers disembark to continue their journey elsewhere. Some of our students, families and staff move on to the next phase of their lives beyond South Island School. Saying goodbye is always difficult, as we have grown attached to each and every member of our community who has passed through our doors. But we take comfort in knowing that we have equipped our students with the skills, knowledge, and values necessary for their future endeavours and that our staff feel valued and ready for their next journey.

At this time I want to say farewell to the staff members leaving us to continue their journeys beyond South Island School and wish them all the best.  They all made a difference to our community. Jenny Williams – Teacher of Biology, Lili Tang – Lead Teacher of Chinese, Rui Zhao – Teacher of Chinese, Shaine Bushell Interim Vice Principal, Clare Wong – Lead Teacher of Mathematics, Lucy Tyrell – Head of Theory of Knowledge, Berina Chan – Higher Education Counsellor, Huiwen Cheng – Teacher of Art, Joseph Clark – Student Counsellor, Fion Got – PE Assistant, Jaycee Parale – Laboratory Assistant, 

A “See you soon” to our teachers who will be on Maternity Leave; Caitlin Lewis – Teacher of Design, Food Specialist, Sally Parr – Head of Languages 

And a warm welcome back to Anna Foster,  Ben Phipps and Kitty Yeung  who return after a year’s absence.  We are excited to see you again in August.  Thank you to Gaya Aravid – Teacher of Individuals and Societies (Business and Economics), Ines Kwai-Pun – Teacher of English and Andrew Rueger – Teacher of Individual Needs and InSoc for all their support during this time.

I want to express my gratitude to the South Island School community. Your unwavering support, trust, and dedication have made my maiden flight as the pilot of this wonderful school both successful and special.

For those who are disembarking at this time, thank you for your invaluable contributions to our school community. We are a better school because of you.  Remember that you will always be a part of the South Island School family.  We have given our leaving students a small gift, a South Island School keychain, to help them remember their little school on the hill and connect with other alums as they proudly wear it.

To those who will remain on board, I am excited to continue our journey together. As we look ahead to the next leg of our flight, I look forward to the opportunities and achievements that lie ahead. 

On behalf of the entire South Island School team, I wish you all a relaxing and memorable summer break.

Carolyn Andrews

Interim Principal

Upcoming Events & Information

(1) RELEASE OF IB RESULTS

IBDP exam results will be released to individual students beginning 6 July at 12:00:00 GMT (8 pm HKT).  We will release our school’s provisional results on 10 July.  We want to acknowledge and affirm all our Y13 graduates for their tireless efforts throughout these past 2 years, and we can’t wait to celebrate with those who finished exceptionally well in their exams.

(2) SCHOOL NETWORK SHUT DOWN

As the school year comes to a close, and we enter summer break, we will take this time to do some site improvement works. As such, please note that the school network will shut down at 2 pm today to prepare for these improvement works. The internet on campus will also shut down, and there will be no access to iSAMS and VLE over the weekend. The network will be back up by 6 July, and access to iSAMS and VLE will be restored.  We apologise for any inconvenience.

(3) 2023-2024 TIMETABLES

With the 2022-2023 school year in the rearview mirror, we look ahead to the 2023-2024 school year.  Please note Year 8-13 timetables will be published through the iSAMS Student App on 11 August. Year 7 students and new students from across all grades will be given a hard copy on 16 August when they arrive on campus for the new school year. 

(4) SUMMER READING

With summer in full swing, what a great time to pick up a book for some leisure reading.  The Learning Resource Centre is currently running Summer Reads 2023 program with a large selection of eBooks and audiobooks available for our students through the SORA platform.  Please find more information about Summer Reads 2023 through this link HERE

Along with Summer Reads 2023, our 2023-2024 House Cup is underway with the Interhouse Readathon.  Students & teachers can score some early house points by reading this summer!  For rules and scoring information, please access this link HERE

Whether at the beach or on that long-haul flight overseas, stimulate your literary muscles this summer by picking up a book or two and immersing yourself in the world of your choice.  Have fun reading!

(5) SUPPORT OVER THE SUMMER BREAK.

The summer break provides much-needed rest, relaxation and fun-filled activities, but we understand that this can also be a demanding time for families. The school term officially ends on Friday 30th June.  Please note: In times of crisis or emergency, school staff should not be the first point of contact over the holidays. Please find HERE detailed information about access to support available in Hong Kong. The document also provides suggestions for activities to help students transition into the holiday period. Our school counselling services will resume at the start of the term in August. 

(6) SCHOOL UNIFORM (Y7-Y11) UPDATES. 

Please see the updates to the SIS uniform guidelines for August 2023 HERE.

NOTABLE EVENTS

(1) SIS FILM AWARDS WEBSITE

We celebrated our annual SIS Film Awards two weeks ago with winners from 17 categories.  The 2023 Awards website is now live.  We invite you to check out the amazing works of all our winners and nominees.  Please access the website HERE

(2) Y7 & Y8 MYP

Years 7 and 8 have pushed their creativity to the next level this term.

Year 7 have recently completed their study of “Lord of the Flies: The Acting Edition”, looking at how societies and leadership can misuse power. To culminate their study, Ms Percival’s class have created masks to represent the changes in character and theme across the play. Some even imagined themselves within the narrative, creating masks to show how they might change and develop. Ms Stirling-Reed’s class have created sets for the play, recreating their own versions of the play. The photos look fantastic!

In Year 8, students this term have focused on the rights and responsibilities of free speech and how campaigns use language and design to persuade an audience. Students also created a printed element for their campaign alongside presenting a two-minute persuasive speech on a global issue. Topics ranged from environmental concerns, sustainability, and freedom of expression to global inequalities. I’m sure you’ll agree that their end products are incredibly effective!

 

(3) THE TECH BUBBLE SEASON 4

The Rise of AI- We are delighted to announce the first episode of the fourth season of The Tech Bubble, the SIS school podcast, which will focus exclusively on Artificial Intelligence for this season. This week, our usual two hosts, Iain Williamson, the Head of Film, Media, and Digital Literacy at SIS, and Amaanat Rekhi (11N2), take their turn to be the guests, with questions asked by the new Community Development Officer, Donald Ma. The team discusses the remarkable changes in education and most other sectors in the last six months. You can find the podcast HERE

(4) FAMILY BAUHINIA MAGAZINE

A group of dynamic and passionate Year 7 students have prepared a Family Bauhinia end of year magazine for you to enjoy. Access the magazine through the link HERE

(5) ENRICHMENT: BRITISH SIGN LANGUAGE

Ms. Elliott ran the British Sign Language club for Enrichment this term. The class had fun learning a completely new skill, out of their comfort zones. Congratulations to Chloe Liu (10N1) who completed the full course and achieved her ‘Introduction to British Sign Language’ course.


Phase Year 7-9

Message from Head of Phase Year 7-9:

CURRICULUM

Year 9 Science Fair

All of the year 9 students have been working on a science fair investigation this term in science. Each class selected their best two investigations which went through to the science fair final. The finalists presented their investigations to the judges and other students from years 8 and 9 and demonstrated excellent teamwork, collaboration and communication skills. Winners were awarded in the following categories; best teamwork, best presentation, most creative idea, best science and overall winners. The winners for best teamwork were Rose Steicke, Agastya Rekhi and Alex Yang. Winners for best presentation were Oxford Chan, Hannah Leung, Alexis Ng and Vedika Sreejesh. Winners for most creative idea were Matthew Hoare, Ashlyn Mak, Charlotte Kuan and Riley Yeung. Winners for best science were Nishka Chopra, Charlotte Ho, Kotomi Matsuyama and Karin Shigiya. The winners were Jasmine Chong, Sonia Lee, Estella Wen, Isaac Kwong and Bernice Lui.

All of the finalists contributed to a high-quality science fair final and should feel proud of their efforts.

Year 7 and Year 8 – French and Spanish Spelling Bee 

Students were challenged to learn a list of words in either Spanish or French; they prepared and practised and prepared themselves for the in-class semi-finals. It was a close competition, and students showed excellent ability to spell in each language. 

Congratulations to all our semi-final and grand winners!

Y9 Chinese Battle of the Books

Battle of the Books took place on June 13th. In this event, Year 9 students were all asked to read at least 10 passages of the themed book to prepare for activities that challenge their knowledge, analysis and creativity, catered at various literacy levels. This event was conducted in Yr 7,8, and 9 in conjunction with the Chinese Department, Betty Ow and some Yr 12 students, who ran this as a CAS project. These events have been created to help encourage more reading in Chinese at different literacy levels in a fun and engaging way. Some of the events included; 

  • Introduction
  • 3 battles
  • Two recital performances
  • Two Games
  • Y9 students & Y12 planning committee sharing

The Final Winning Team

  • Tiger He
  • Chloe Chan
  • Charmaine Chu
  • Jasmine Chong
  • Cheryl Chan
  • Candice Law

The Best Image Design

  • Charlotte Kuan
  • Corliss Young

VALUES IN ACTION

Year 6 Transition Day

On June 2nd, all the year 6s were in South Island School for the ESF-wide Transition Day. Students arrived excited to meet their tutors and tutees for a day of fun, connections and activities. As the students started their journey at South Island School, many new friendships and memories were made.

Sports Awards

Well done to all C and B Grade Family Bauhinia sports players for your commitment to the teams and supporting our school teams.

Film Awards

Congratulations to so many students who were nominated and won awards this month at our Annual SIS Film Awards. As part of the News Unit for Creative Arts: Media, Y9 MYP, Bernice Lui (9N1) won the Bodega Media News Report category with this piece.

FB Panto

Family Bauhinia held their annual end-of-term Assembly/Pantomime, featuring a performance of Cinderella, to express gratitude to the Year 7 and 8 students and bid farewell to the Year 9s. The event was a huge success, with special guest appearances by the Spice Girls, a PE dance troupe, and even Mr Fox (who played the role of the fox?). 

As we reflect on the incredible engagement, perseverance in the face of challenges, and positive impact that students made throughout the year, it’s exciting to wonder what the Family Bauhinia team has in store for next year’s end-of-term celebration. Whatever it may be, it will be a fantastic way to express appreciation for all the students accomplished and send them off into the summer break with a sense of pride and accomplishment.

WELL-BEING

ECA – congratulations and well done to all the Family Bauhinia students who have taken part in ECAs this year. Activities are so important to student wellbeing for physical health and many other benefits, including personal growth, developing leadership qualities, finding new interests, sharing passions, supporting the school across events and meeting new friends. Students will be invited to sign up for new ECAs in Term 1. Keep a look out for the email in your inbox!  

We would like to use this opportunity to say farewell to some of our leaving students, some of our FB tutors ( Gaya Aravind ( 8M2), Berina Chan ( 8C2), Caitlin Lewis- Maternity Leave ( 8S2), Dr Shaine Bushell and Joe Clark who have been an integral part of Family Bauhinia Family. We wish you all great success, health and happiness in your future endeavours and look forward to hearing back from you as your new adventures begin.

And finally, a Message to Year 9 – you will soon be Family Bauhinia alumni. Once Family Bauhinia – always Family Bauhinia – you are always welcome back to see us.

As the summer break approaches, I wanted to take a moment to wish you all a happy and healthy break. You have worked hard this past academic year, and deserve time to rest, recharge, and have fun.

As you take this time to relax and enjoy the warmer weather, I encourage you to prioritise your health and well-being. Remember to take care of yourselves physically and mentally and make time for the things that bring you joy and happiness.

Whether you plan to travel, spend time with family and friends, or enjoy quiet time at home, I hope you have a wonderful summer break.

I look forward to seeing you all back in August 2023, refreshed and ready to take on the new academic year. Until then, take care and enjoy your well-deserved break!

Syrita Nicholas

Head of Phase (Year 7-9)

Phase Year 10-11

Message from Head of Phase Year 10-11:

CURRICULUM

Our Year 11 students completed their final IGCSE examination of the series on June 20th. This marked the end of the first complete exam series in three years, and we would like to commend our students for their resilience and determination. We are proud of their hard work and dedication, and we wish them all the best as they await their results. A reminder that the IGCSE examination results will be released on Wednesday, August 16th, and Thursday, August 24th. Students can log on to their examination accounts to access their results (separate communication has been sent regarding this).

VALUES IN ACTION

  

The values in action curriculum is one of the cornerstones of South Island School, and we believe it sets us apart from other schools. We are pleased to report that our Year 10/11 students have had the opportunity to be involved in various fantastic opportunities outside of the curriculum, including Diwali night celebrations and performances, House leadership team awareness weeks, SIS MUN conference, MaD week trips and visits, Innovation Fashion Show, fundraising and collecting (including Syria disaster relief, kindness week, and sports drives), International evening, House assemblies, and enrichment activities. We encourage Year 10/11 students to continue to look for and engage with the many opportunities on offer at school. And thank the staff and students involved in making these events happen this year.

WELL-BEING

It has been a busy year where the resilience of staff and students has been tested. We were all keen to return to “normal” after Covid, and it was a wonder to see our students returning to school and throwing themselves into school life.  That said, returning to normal brings with it some stress. Acknowledging the changes that have taken place and taking time to reflect on them is an important aspect of our well-being. We hope you and your families are able to make space over the break to reflect and appreciate all you have done to support and get our school community up and running at full strength. Wishing you a restful holiday.

Laura Beaumont

Head of Phase (Year 10-11)

Phase Year 12-13

Message from Head of Phase Year 12-13:

CURRICULUM

I wrote a blurb for this section that provided a useful summary of senior school academics at South Island School this month, but it seemed slightly anti-climatic for the final monthly newsletter of the year. Instead, here is a poem generated by ChatGPT covering all the same information:

In Year 12, the progress check came,
Released on a Friday1, a familiar game,
Eight days prior2, Core day the second,
DP students worked hard, to get it all reckoned.

The Extended Essay was due by the end,
2000 words submitted, a hurdle to bend,
With supervisors met, and plans to be made,
The next deadline looms, the pressure won’t fade.

To meet the September 1st draft deadline,
DP students must work, and not decline,
Supervisors’ guidance, they’ll need to heed,
To achieve their goals, and succeed.

Year 13 results, on 6 July, will show,
At 20:00, the news will glow,
Higher Ed counsellors, and the IB Coordinator too,
Will be on campus, to guide and see students through.

Support is what we’re here to provide,
To help students reach the goals they’ve eyed,
With hard work and dedication, we’ll all see,
The success that’s possible, for students like thee.

Footnotes:

  1. Friday, 16 June
  2. Thursday, 8 June

VALUES IN ACTION

While Diploma Programme students were working on their Extended Essays for Core Day on 8 June, the CP and Courses students were participating in a service learning opportunity at Crossroads, where they helped with a variety of tasks at the former Gurkha barracks. Here is a description of their activities that day, made into an acrostic (once again with AI assistance): 

Crossroads, a place where they went
Rewarding, the experience they spent
Opportunity, for service and more
Students, participating in the CP Core
Service learning, the CP and Courses crew
Roles, varied and many to pursue
Organising, household items to pack
App, to catalogue electronics on track
Donation, laptops to prepare
Students, eager to return and share

 

WELL-BEING

An important aspect of positive well-being is taking time to reflect, acknowledge and celebrate your own achievements. There were many opportunities for that this past month, as we had the Sports Awards on 13 June, the Film & Media Awards on 15 June, and the inaugural Gratitude Week from 19 – 23 June. I especially appreciated the opportunity for our six houses to say “thank you” to their House Leadership teams during the end-of-year House assemblies – groups of Year 12 students who have worked hard all year to bring House spirit to South Island School.

 

Hin-Hey Lam

Head of Phase (Year 12-13)

Student Celebrations

(1) DANIELLA ZAVATTI AWARD

The English Department is honoured to present the Daniella Zavatti Award for Literature each year. This memorial fund award of $5000HK is given to an IB student who has shown a passion for Literature that extends beyond the classroom.

We are delighted to present this year’s award to Matthew Haylett (12B2) in recognition of his passion, dedication and support of Literature within the school and the wider Hong Kong community. Matthew is a keen member of the English Club, supporting students with their language learning while volunteering with local charities to support English Language learners. Matthew is currently planning to continue his study of Literature at University. 

(2) 74TH HONG KONG SCHOOLS SPEECH FESTIVAL

 

Ivan Liu (08K1) participated in the 74th Hong Kong Schools Speech Festival in the Chinese Speech category, showcasing his talent and securing third place. He delivered a stirring Cantonese rendition of the poem “Classmate” by renowned Chinese poet Yanqing Hu, impressing the judges with his exceptional expression and passion. Ivan’s interpretation and delivery of the poem were outstanding, earning him a well-deserved nomination and award.

(3) 18TH SINGAPORE NATIONAL SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS

Ashley Koh (10S2) (second to the left) was part of the silver medaling team in the 4×100 metres freestyle relay at last week’s 18th Singapore National Swimming Championships. Ashley had the exciting experience of racing with Singapore’s top national swimmers, including Olympian Quah Ting Wen, Amanda Lim and Yeo Chiok Sze, against teams from Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Hong Kong. Ashley also qualified in the 100m butterfly event to represent Singapore at the upcoming Southeast Asian Age Group Swimming Championships in August. Congratulations on a great performance; we look forward to hearing more of your success in the pool.

(4) JOCKEY CLUB YOUTH FOOTBALL LEAGUE (JCYFL) U13 FA CUP

Daniel Lee (7M1) scored the final goal for the HK Football Club U13 Team in last week’s Jockey Club Youth Football League (JCYFL) U13 FA Cup final.  However, despite Daniel and the HKFC’s best efforts, they fell to champions Kitchee by a score of 6 – 2.

The JCYFL is a popular youth soccer competition hosted by the Jockey Club, with more than 20 teams participating. The HKFC team had a strong showing throughout the U13 FA Cup tournament, going undefeated in the group stage and then making it to the championship match before suffering their first loss of the tournament to Kitchee. 

Great job Daniel on a wonderful tournament!  

(5) HK Premier Youth League U14

Jay Park (8C1) and the BC Rangers U14 team finished atop the HK Premier Youth League U14 and are now the 2022/2023 Hong Kong Premier Youth League Champions. After months of training and matches, Jay and the Rangers saw their hard work and dedication pay off.  What a marvellous achievement for them. Marvellous job Jay! We can’t wait to hear more about your football success on the pitch!

 

JUNE WEEKLY NEWSLETTERS

Linked below are this month’s weekly newsletters:

 

KEY DATES

August

  • Wednesday, 16 – Year 7 and New Students First Day of School
  • Thursday, 17 – Year 7 to Year 13 Return to Campus
  • Click HERE to view 2023-24 FINAL Calendar

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If your son or daughter has a particular highlight or achievement you would like to share with the community, please email a short description and photo to: ebulletin@sis.edu.hk 

Congratulations to our IB Graduates! South Island School 2024 IB Results are now available! Please find themHERE
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