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GSIS Gazette – Issue #51

4th June 2021

Dear Members of the School Community

Some time ago, Oxford University conducted a study on young adults that also included their parents. It was found that following “helicopter parents”, an even more intense and overly focused form of parental style has emerged, the so-called “curling parents”.

While ‘helicopter parents’ are characterised by parents who are overly focused on their child, particularly academically, similar to a hovering helicopter, ‘curling parents’ try to sweep away any obstacles in their child’s path so their child can go through life without the slightest bump.

Helicopter parents tend to over-protect and over-shelter their child to the point of significantly limiting their child's independence, personal responsibility and freedom. They constantly stay by their children's side to interfere in their children's affairs in all areas of life and are always prepared to take every decision away from their children. To be absolutely certain of the child's location, there is constant monitoring through local tracking by mobile phone.

The curling parents increase the overprotection and sheltering even more by constantly striving to remove all resistance, dangers, risks, efforts, demands and troubles from their child's path.

Certainly, these metaphors are generally exaggerated and questionable. But nevertheless they can mark a tendency of a gradual perfecting of a smooth and flawless path for our offspring, who are supposed to move along a straight, even and unobstructed path to their goals. 

But how should a generation raised this way deal with defeats, with confrontations or obstacles? "If you don't learn to fall, you don't learn to get up and move forward," said former world boxing champion Wladimir Klitschko, who today trains executives in challenge management. How are our children and young people supposed to learn to hold the reins themselves when they only know walking on a tight leash? In order to learn to deal with obstacles, to master challenges, to make courageous decisions, one must have left the comfort zone at times. 

These are questions we deal with as educators at GSIS. We want to give our students the ability to develop leadership skills, to make decisions, to think independently and critically, to deal with obstacles. We are not so much concerned with encouraging self-optimisation, but more with building healthy self-confidence. 

Remember, too, the next time you are helicoptering or curling, to leave open doors for self-development and free development for your children, with all the necessary guidance in today's often very closed spaces of childhood.

I wish you a nice weekend

Ulrich Weghoff

Dear Parents

It was great to see many parents at my last monthly coffee morning of the academic year.  It was particularly good to be able to welcome parents in-person and exchange our thoughts, and I’m looking forward to many more Coffee Mornings in the 2021/22 school year.

As I shared last week, a new bus company, Synergy, has been selected to provide the school’s bus services (not Clearwater Bay or Sai Kung areas).  If you intend to use this service, please register here by Wednesday, 30th June. 

I am also pleased to share that an overall improvement has been made with the lowering of the temperature in the Upper Building. Multiple measures shared in my email last week have been completed. Our Facilities team have also sun-proofed the windows on the Wellcome supermarket side and we will complete such work on windows of Mansfield Road by Friday this week.  Split units for two classrooms will also be installed by this Friday.  We want to assure you that providing a safe and comfortable learning environment is our top priority.

I hope you all have a great weekend.

Best regards

Clare Chiu
Managing Director

Schoolwide News

GSIS Uniform Sale
University Guidance: Upcoming Events
Green Basketball Summer Camp

German International Stream

Kindergarten Corner

Departmental News and Announcements

No updates / announcements this week.

Primary Corner

Departmental News and Announcements

No updates / announcements this week.

Secondary Corner

Dear Parents

I am pleased to introduce the new Head Students Team and the new Prefects of the German Secondary Department:

Elected as Head Student and Deputy Head Student are:

Sebastian Da Silva (K11) and Emily Arisandy (K10).

The new Prefects are:

Amina Abouhanine (K10), Emily Arisandy (K10), Etienne Boeing (K11), Sebastian Da Silva (K11), Julius Erbes (K11), Jonas Hahn (K11), Hilda Kong (K11), Käthe Rautenberg (K10) and Sophie Vukovich (K11). Sophie Vukovich and Emily Arisandy were elected as Head Prefects.

We congratulate all the above students on their election and thank them for their willingness to take on responsibility and make a contribution to school life.

We look forward to working together!

Wiebke Langer
Head of German Secondary Department
Arnold Leitner
Deputy Head of German Secondary Department
(Click thumbnail/s to enlarge image)

Departmental News and Announcements

LGBTQ+ Book Display

English International Stream

From Head of Stream

Dear Parents

Our University Guidance Team have been particularly active over the past few weeks in hosting a series of online events with key universities. On Wednesday evening Sue Prinsloo and Claire Wilkins hosted a highly successful event with Stanford, UPenn, NYU, Columbia and Brown for over 100 students and parents from both Streams focused on Understanding Hyper Selectivity in US Admissions.

Next Friday from 4 pm to 6 pm there will be a session focused on Studying Medicine in Europe with Medical Doorway, St. Andrews, Glasgow, and a GSIS alum. The following week there will be a sessions focused on STEM in the US and the UK with Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Imperial College London on Wednesday 15th June at 7pm. The next day, from 5 to 6 pm there will be a German Education Evening with DAAD representative.

Thanks to Sue Prinsloo and Claire Wilkins for setting up these events and for the huge support of students and parents that make all the planning worthwhile. The participating universities are also very pleased by this initiative as they are able to make contact with our fantastic students. Mike Devlin from Stanford University was particularly appreciative and shared a resounding endorsement of Claire’s experience and wisdom around the university application process.

We are pleased to announce that Beatrice Ugolini will be joining the University Guidance Team in August before Sue Prinsloo departs later in the year. Beatrice has a broad network of connections in international universities and is keen to help take University Guidance at GSIS to the next level.

Drum Jam

Huge thanks to Jennifer McLachlan for organising the tremendous Drum Jam this week. It was great to see students engaging in a collective (suitably distanced) activity and allowed us to start to imagine what things might be like again in the near future.

Graduation 2021

We were very pleased to be able to say a formal farewell to our Year 13 Graduates last week in the IB Hall. Separated by plexi-glass we were able to welcome three groups of students and their parents to a graduation ceremony that was streamed across the world. We wish them all the greatest success with their IB Diploma results in July and hope they stay in contact with the school through our Alumni Association.

Have a great week ahead!

Simon Misso-Veness
Deputy Principal / Head of English International Stream

Kindergarten Corner

Departmental News and Announcements

No updates / announcements this week.

Primary Corner

Dear Parents,

Class Blending for Next Year

At this point in the year, our teachers begin working on class blending for next year. We considered leaving some of the younger year levels intact and moving them as a group to the next year level but have decided to move ahead with blending the classes The first step of the process is for students to complete sociograms where they provide information about other students who they enjoy spending time with and working with, both within the classroom and within the year level. The teachers then meet to look at several factors, including gender-mix, personalities and academics. After a draft class is formed a number of other individuals look at the class blend, including Mr Davidson, Ms Chan and Ms Marquard. We do look at parent requests and accommodate when we can but please understand this is not always possible. We will hold a transition day on 28 June, where all students will have the opportunity to meet their new teacher, in their new classroom. Class lists will be emailed to parents before the last day of school, 30 June.

Drum Jam

Ms McLachlan did a fantastic job organising the African drumming for the Primary this week. Ask your children about their experience!

Enjoy your weekend!

Kim Cunningham
Head of English Primary Department
Donna Morley
Deputy Head of English Primary Department

Departmental News and Announcements

No updates / announcements this week.

Secondary Corner

Departmental News and Announcements

LGBTQ+ Book Display


Upcoming Events 2021

Class of 1996 25 Year Reunion

Thursday 17 Jun 2021
18:00 - 21:00 HKT
More Info »

Community Networking Breakfast

Friday 17 Sep 2021
08:00 - 11:00 HKT
LRC, Mid Levels
More Info »

Annual Alumni Reception

Wednesday 24 Nov 2021
18:00 - 22:00 HKT
Watermark, Central
More Info »

Community Committee's Christmas Bazaar

Saturday 27 Nov 2021
German Swiss International School
More Info »


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