A Regional Learning Community

A Regional Learning Community

April 20, 2018

Last Friday, The ISF Academy enjoyed the privilege of hosting two major educational festivals: The 6th Asia-Pacific Chinese-English Bilingual Festival and the Hong Kong MS festival. For two days, Friday 13 April and Saturday 14 April, we became an international learning hub for more than 500 visitors, students, teachers, adjudicators, and support staff, representing more than 30 schools in our region.

For those delegates taking part in the Bilingual Festival, bilingual speeches, debates, poetry recitations, even story-telling, resonated around the halls, classrooms, and meeting spaces in our school, as 300 Bilingual Festival delegates sought to prepare themselves for the challenges of competition in front of peers and external adjudicators. The sixth in a series of events aimed at promoting Chinese-English bilingual education in our region, this was the largest and most ambitious of these events to date.

For those 150 young performers participating in 'Dreaming the Land', the central theme of the theatrical workshop, small groups worked together to improve on their stagecraft, performance techniques, storytelling, and theatrical exercises in the H.J. Zhang Black Box Theater, classrooms, and many open spaces around our school. It was highly experiential and participatory. ISF looks forward to hosting another ISTA event in the coming years.

Aside from the logistical challenges of ensuring that our visitors were well cared for during their stay, we had the slightly unusual task of maintaining our normal 'business as usual' operations across all divisions and grades. With an additional 500 people on-site, it made for a busy time for our managers, support staff, Facilities Management, and organising teachers and volunteers. I was certainly most proud of the way in which our support teams and event organisers worked together to iron-out the inevitable wrinkles that appeared during the normal school day.

Along with our very first IB Mathematics International Workshop event held in January, these events demonstrate our growing capacity to offer world-class learning facilities for regional events. At the closing of the 6th Bilingual Festival on Saturday afternoon, speakers shared of the deep impression created by the spacious and well-equipped facilities and the excellent service offered by our highly skilled support staff.

Even if only for a couple of days, it was a proud moment in our relatively young school‘s history to be a centre of learning for such a large and diverse international community.

Farewell and Good Luck: the Class of 2018

Today we bid our first 'informal' farewell to the Class of 2018, as they reach the end of their formal school studies. Over the coming weeks, the 36 members of the Class of 2018 will undertake their IB Diploma examinations, the culminating point in 15 years of formal education.

The extraordinary list of tertiary offers earned by this talented cohort sets a new highwater mark for college placements in our school. Thirty-three of these students received 113 offers from the top 50 universities in the world, including Cambridge University, Princeton University, Stanford University, Cornell University, the University of Pennsylvania, Brown University, Imperial College, and the London School of Economics and Politics. Overall, each student received an average of just over six college offers; most received offers from their first choice institution.

I hope all members of the wider ISF family will join with me in offering their best wishes to each anxious examination candidate as they prepare for one of the most demanding academic tests they will face in a lifetime!



Dr. Malcolm Pritchard

Head of School

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