Turning the Corner

Turning the Corner

 

Welcome to 2019! We have ‘turned the corner’ in the 2018-19 academic year, and our thoughts now turn to some important annual events that take place at this time each year: Chinese New Year celebrations and holidays, ISF sports days, the Spring Concert, the ISF Secondary School Production, the elections in Secondary School that will determine our student leadership team in 2019-20, ELP 2, and of course the annual celebrations that mark the graduation and departure of the Class of 2019. The next few months will be busy indeed.

Recently, we asked all members of our community to participate in the CIS community survey. The survey, a requirement for all schools undergoing accreditation, provides all community members with an opportunity to provide feedback to the school on its essential operations. Responses are anonymous. The data collected allows us to gauge our own performance against expectations placed on accredited schools. This data is an important tool for school development.

Please support us by completing the survey!

At the start of the current academic year, we implemented new measures to manage access to our Kong Sin Wan Campus. This was a necessary step in the evolution of our school, as growing numbers of students and parents in our community have made it difficult to maintain our previous approaches to managing access and security. All staff and faculty now bear cards that include a photo, name, and position.

The new parent pick-up cards, all of which will bear a photo of the cardholder, have generated some discussion and raised some questions among members of our community. This new development is a part of a school-wide process to enhance the safety of our children. The cards offer a reliable means of ensuring that all visitors to our campus are properly identified and have a legitimate reason for being on campus.  The process by which photos are uploaded has been communicated to all parents. The cards once issued will be used for access to the school at all times. It is important for the safety of all children that the system as implemented is respected by all parents: cards should not be used by anyone other than the cardholder. We ask for patience as we work through the various issues associated with introducing a new system.

The design of access gates at both the north and south entrances has been under review for some months. We are working on increasing the number of gates through a modification to the existing entrance layout to increase capacity at peak times. Again, we ask for patience and cooperation: in particular, all students in the Secondary School should use the north gate (at the top end of Kong Sin Wan Road) during peak times.

Parent access to ISF libraries has been a long-standing practice that enables each parent to become directly involved in developing their child’s literacy. The implementation of our new access cards will also support the libraries in the management of book lending. As in the past, parents will be able to borrow books on behalf of their child, using their card. Please understand that to assist in the management of our library collections, borrowing privileges cannot be extended beyond parents.

For some, turning the corner and entering a new calendar year offers hope for new beginnings and opportunities. For others, the passing of another year is accompanied by mixed feelings – of time’s urgency, as it flows past us at a rapid pace, building the pressure on to keep up. I admire the optimism of the former and cannot offer a remedy for the latter. As time only flows in one direction, I can only restate the obvious: time is a gift given to each of us in a finite, but unknown quantity. We can while time away; we can ignore it; we can also waste it, or even fear it; I would urge each of us instead to embrace it as precious and use each day, each hour wisely.

 

 

 

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