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GSIS Gazette – Issue #65

5th November 2021

Dear Parents

This week, we come to our final remaining core value of ‘Excellence’.

Around the world, pressures on schools to perform have never been greater.  I feel lucky and privileged to work in and lead a school where excellence is expected from every student and member of staff.  Our standards are high, academics are challenging, students are gifted and teachers are talented.  These have all contributed to our continuing standard of excellence in both Streams.

Recently, I came across a quote from Aristotle, “We are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit’.

Academic excellence is a prerequisite for exceptional performance. However, we must remind ourselves that excessive pressure to perform can break student personalities, preventing exceptional performance.

On the basis of academic excellence, at GSIS the teachers, who are skillful educators, keep perspective and pay attention to not letting the pressure to perform become too great. I would also like to ask you as parents to make sure that you do not overtax your children and that you place a high value on the development of their personality.

In good cooperation between teachers and parents, we at GSIS will find the best way for a holistic education in the sense of all our school values.

I hope you all have an enjoyable weekend.

Best regards

Dr Dirk Bennhardt
Principal
Email


Dear Parents and Members of Staff

I hope you and family had a joyful and relaxing mid-term break.

We have just completed our CPD day where we realigned ourselves with our strategic objectives and supported our members of staff with tools and resources needed for another productive academic year with our students.

Time flies, it is now November.  As shared during the Summer, I will be leaving GSIS at the end of November and when I joined, I shared what a privilege it is to work for this legacy school.  I have enjoyed serving students, parents and members of staff over the last two years and have given my best efforts.  This is a journey that I have greatly cherished and will remember all those community members that I have had the honour to work with along the way.  Thank you for your relentless support.

Upon reflection, I thought that I'd share some of the key developments and challenges faced in the last academic year.  Most importantly, please continue to support the school, the Principal, the Senior Management Team and all the staff to take this school to the next level.

The 2020-2021 Academic Year was probably one of the most challenging years in the history of school operations.  The ever-changing pandemic situation and its subsequent restrictions imposed on schools in Hong Kong were unprecedented.  I am impressed with the agility and resilience our team demonstrated throughout.  The numerous resumption applications to the EDB and the actual implementation would not have been possible and approved without the relentless hard work and support from all staff, especially the Administration Team.

We had a rocky start due to the task given by the government (taking fortnightly PCR tests without legal support).  However, although difficult, we were able to eventually align all staff towards the goal by providing extra and individualised support to those in need.  I was also grateful for how our staff and community united together to create a safer environment for us all, by supporting and encouraging all to vaccinate.  Our staff and student vaccination rates were top among schools in Hong Kong and this would not have been possible without active participation from each one of us.

Despite a challenging context, we were still able to achieve substantial progress against our 5-year strategic plan and the yearly strategic objectives, on top of our daily operations and special measures required due to the pandemic.  In summary, 2019/20 was a year that the structure, process, policy and revamped procedure were put in place in priority areas to modernise our school and enable our operations.  Roles and accountability were clearly defined and in 2019, the Performance Appraisal system was launched to measure the progress and performance, as well as to identify, support and develop career aspirations.  Such work enabled us to focus on efficiency enhancement in all areas for Academic year 2020/21.  Although GSIS is a not for profit educational organisation, we strive to maximise the value and impact for our students through good management and utilisation of the tuition fee income entrusted by parents.  Through the established performance driven culture, we were collectively able to achieve great KPIs and outcomes.

Longer term, we received encouragement and reassurance from the parents that the overall improvement of the traffic condition had been improved and the measures in place were working.  The school engaged parent representatives for two years for the annual tender to recruit a new bus company to bring better services to students and parents at costs.  Most importantly, it is preparation for a mandatory bus policy which will be necessary once the construction at Mansfield Road starts. Furthermore, it was felt that in order to implement this, the school must ensure a reliable bus service to move forward with this. Many schools in Hong Kong who use KCM are equally frustrated, but the worry and risk associated with bringing in a new service provider is a challenge.  We are the only international school to have successfully made the switch.  The school has done its best to manage the tendering process and endorse the decision of the Bus Company Selection Committee, and to support Synergy to settle in its operations at GSIS.  Together with Synergy, the school will continue to evaluate and support Synergy’s services; we thank parents’ understanding and support in the school's initiative and action of bringing in a new bus company.

In partnership with the Police, Transportation Department, District Council, Developer (Wheelock), the school is also exploring an off-site drop off area and shuttle bus should the traffic worsen due to construction.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank staff members, parents and community members for the support given to the school. After two years in post, I am leaving the school at the end of November 2021 proud of what we have achieved together.  I ask for your continuous support and encouragement of the school, particularly to the Administration Team who have cared deeply and given their best efforts in every way possible.  Many of them are the silent and reliable heroes working behind the scenes to turn everything from a plan to a reality.

I would like to share below some highlights from 2020/21:

Enhanced Efficiency

  • Consolidated Incomes & Expenditure (Association & Foundation), after intercompany contribution between Association and Foundation.
  1. Income: 2% below the budget
  2. Expenditure: 6% below the budget.  Although a small portion of cleaning force was outsourced in 2020/21 for better cleaning quality required for pandemic, the major saving had been achieved from administrative personnel costs starting from March 2020 (Academic Year 2019/20) due to active and conscious manpower utilisation by redefining and merging roles etc in preparation of economic downturn and potential declined tuition fee income.
  3. Surplus: HKD 172% over the budget
  • Headcount for Administration Staff 
  1. 2020/21 Budget: 96 pax
  2. 2020/21 Actual: 79 pax (active manpower utilisation started from March 2020: Academic Year 2019/20 by redefining and merging roles etc in preparation of economic downturn.  A small portion of Cleaning Force was outsourced in 2020/21)
  3. 2021/22 Budget: 79
  4. 2021/22 September Actual: 73 pax
  • Student and Administration Staff Ratio:
  1. 2020/21 Budget: 12.8 (each administration staff supporting 12.8 students)
  2. 2020/21 Actual: 15.3
  3. 2021/22 Budget: 15.7
  4. 2021/22 September actual: 16.9

Better Service at Costs

  • A new bus company was tendered and selected to enhance students’ and parents’ experience and in preparation for mandatory bus policy at Peak Campus
  • Thorough implementation of tendering and procurement policy to elicit better services at costs and for compliance.

Finance Sustainability

  • Procedures and policies were refined to enhance the efficiency and the roll out of the entire ERP.
  • Overall operations will be further streamlined once SAP and portals are synched and rolled out in 2021/22 with solid progress achieved in 2020/21.
  • Capital levy was announced and promoted for the intake in 2021/22 to recruit a variety of families to selected year groups.
  • All school fees were re-formalised with the EDB such as debenture, capital levy, 60-day late notice fee and registration fee etc.  Phased implementation was introduced in 2020/21 to tie re-enrolment with registration fee that enabled the school for better resources planning and protected the school’s financial sustainability.

Facility Management

  • Facility Management Team transformation was audited in Summer 2021 and scored 75% which was an outstanding result
  • Key summer projects completed to enhance school facilities
  • Legacy Air Conditioning problems at Upper Building were diagnosed and will be resolved between October to Summer 2022.  Contingency plan well in place to address ad-hoc issues when solution works are in progress.

Project completed in summer 2021.

Compliance to Regulatory Bodies’ Requirements

  • PICS (Personal Information Collection Statement), Community Communication Policy, Tendering and Procurement Policy were launched to strengthen the school’s operations, harmonise the community and provide protection to the school and community at the data privacy protection and compliance areas.
  • New Membership Application and Renewal procedure were launched to build a robust membership database and to prevent irregularities from happening.  A new Membership Portal has also been built and will be launched in 2021/22 to further strengthen the database and application and renewal procedure.
  • Newly refined re-enrolment and new membership procedure and portal ensured all parents and community members consent to PICS and other policies which not only enabled the school conduct its duties, but it protects the entire school and community re data privacy and usage.

Community Engagement & Communications

  • The school’s timely communications via emails and Gazette have become a reliable source of information for students and parents.
  • The readership of Gazette has increased substantially and parents surveyed appreciate the weekly updates from the school
  • Our social media has successfully achieved the goals: (1) showcased the GSIS spirit and community engagement (2) delivered our brand promise: showcasing students’ achievements in all areas (3) generating interest for GSIS events and admissions enquiries.

Admissions

  • Assessments and interviews were successfully implemented despite the challenges faced in pandemic.
  • Seats were filled and healthy shortlists were created.
  • Number of withdrawals were modest compared to others and on track with the budget and previous years, due to close communications and follow-ups.
  • Re-launched re-enrolment, satisfactory result was achieved with more understanding and compliance from parents.
  • Registration Fee was fully implemented and ready to be brought forward to March in 2021/22.  These new policies in place would provide a better forecast of student number and have been updated in all relevant documentation.

HR

  • New Welcome Package and Induction Programme tailored to meet individual’s needs in the context of pandemic which was well received by all new staff.
  • Support the leadership and all staff to take testing and vaccinations through open communications and individualised support and coordination.
  • Staff retention and recruitment was the focus which was a challenge faced by all schools.
  • Dedicated support to staff members’ well-being from counselling services to personalised support when in need

IT Operations as an enabler

  • Data Security audited and action plan in place for partial implementation in 2020/21 and 2021/22 onwards.
  • Upgraded PFL wifi network and firewall to improve online learning experience for Kindergarten and Primary students
  • Enabled major events participated by hundreds: AGM/EGM, Career Day, Townhalls
  • Upgraded the firewall at Peak Campus to provide better IT security for the school
  • Updated and managed all license for online learning
  • The design and deployment of SAP to enhance finance efficiency (a system to streamline and connect budget, expenses and procurement)
  • Implemented and supported the Redefined Membership Application and Renewal Process and designed the new portal to strengthen the membership database and relevant operations.

Finally, as you know, 3rd party independent consulting firm has been commissioned to conduct an engagement survey for the school.  Your active participation is needed, so we have your encouragement, suggestions and feedback to build a school for the 21st Century.

Clare Chiu
Managing Director
Email


News from the Board

Dear GSIS community

Membership Portal

We would like to inform you that the membership portal has been activated and you can renew your association membership for the 2021/22 school year or apply to join the association with the following link: https://www.gsis.edu.hk/aboutus/governance/assoc-membership/

Please note that you must have renewed and paid for your membership to be eligible to vote at the next Annual General Meeting. Applications from new members will be reviewed and you will subsequently receive confirmation of acceptance in a separate email. Please note that it takes a few weeks to review new member applications.

Get involved in the GSIS

As non-profit organisation the GSIS Association relies on unpaid voluntary work of its members in the Board as a Director and in subcommittees from the Board. Therefore, the GSIS Association needs committed community members who have the right expertise, skills, connections and motivation to support the school management in the challenges of operating the school and to get involved in developing the school in line with its vision, mission and core values. If you want to get involved, please give us feedback on the following questions. Your information will be treated strictly confidential.

We are looking forward to your submission via  the following Google Form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSc7AvyUTIgkcud4o0U1SyVka13M4-d3Z_53onoRJbohKwZMGQ/viewform

Please understand that an invitation to serve on the Board and/or on a committee is contingent upon your expertise matching the specific needs of the school. The decision is at the discretion of the Board and finally the Association and Foundation members, who decide on the appointment of Board members through an election process at the AGM.

If you have any questions, please email boardsecretary@gsis.edu.hk

Kind regards,

The Boards of the GSIS Association and Foundation Ltd.
Email



Community Committee

There are so many exciting things happening at the moment, here's is what our community is up to:

Beach Clean-ups

Thank you to everyone who took the time to go and clean up one of our beautiful Hong Kong beaches in October. We have so many wonderful photos to look through and we will announce the winners next week.

Online Christmas Shop

There are only a few more items remaining, so move fast if you would like to stock up on these festive treats before Christmas - https://www.gsis.edu.hk/product-category/german-christmas-goodies/

Celebrating Diwali

Many families in our community will be celebrating Diwali - the Indian festival of lights - this week.  We shared celebratory treats with everyone in our school community yesterday, we hope you enjoyed them and thank you for helping us celebrate. Here's to a year ahead filled with light and laughter!

Summer's Kitchen

Summer's Kitchen is back! This time Summer is going to demonstrate how to make traditional German pretzels.  Everyone who has tried her pretzels has said that they are the best in Hong Kong and taste just like the real thing that you would get in Germany. Join us and find out for yourself....

Community Committee
Email


Schoolwide News

Meeting of KPR Secretaries and School Management

This Wednesday, we had a very positive meeting with our KPR Secretaries team, which could finally be conducted in person again after a long period of online meetings.  

On behalf of my colleagues, Clare Chiu, Grit Cichon and Simon Misso-Veness, I would like to thank the KPR Secretaries and all KPRs very much for the constructive feedback, contributions and support. 

The minutes of the meeting will be shared with parents next week. 

Best regards

Dr Dirk Bennhardt
Principal
Email

University Guidance: Upcoming Event

EVENING INFORMATION SESSION

US Admissions Testing (SAT, ACT etc)

Wednesday 10 November 7:00pm-8:00pm HKT

This virtual event is for students and parents of students in Y07-Y12 and K06-K11. The GoogleMeet link has been sent by email.

Claire Wilkins
Head of University Guidance
Email

Beatrice Ugolini
University Guidance Counsellor
Email

Lunch Menu - November 2021 - Secondary Students Only

Dear Secondary Students and Parents,

Please find below information to the November lunch menu:

Link: November Lunch Menu

Secondary students can have their hot lunches served on plates or if students are not eating their lunch within the premises of the cafeteria, their lunch will be provided in a take-away box due to hygienic reasons.

Each day Secondary students can choose between three different hot dishes, including a vegetarian option. The prices per each meal remain at HK$35 and HK$39 respectively and are payable by Octopus card when lunch is collected. No cash payment will be accepted.

In addition to hot lunches students can also choose from a wide range of ciabattas, croissants and other snacks including smoothies at our coffee corner.

Social distancing rules while eating and drinking still apply and need to be obeyed at all times.

With kind regards,

 

Cornelia Zavou
Student Service Team
Email

ECA/AA Programme - Primary / Peak Campus - Start on Mon, 15 Nov 2021

Dear Parents,

The registration for our ECA/AA programme Term 1 2021/22 for our Primary Students at the Peak Campus has been completed and we are looking forward to the start on Monday, 15 November 2021.

Please be reminded that if your child is enrolled in an activity starting at 2:00pm, please ensure that that your child brings his/her own packed lunch. No hot lunch service can be provided at this time and  no lunches should be delivered to school.

We would like to point out that all Afternoon Activity enrollments (paid activities) are valid and binding once the ECA/AA programme has started. Changes afterwards will not be accommodated. Payment requests per Afternoon Activity will be sent to parents via SchoolsBuddy by Friday, 5 November 2021 and are payable by Friday, 19 November 2021 the latest.

Please note that we have informed our school bus service providers (Clearwater Bay, Hong Kong and Kowloon areas) about the start of the after-school activities programme for our Primary Students at the Peak Campus so that they can accommodate registered bus riders for the 3:20pm dismissal time if they attend activities in Lesson 9/10 from 2:00pm - 3:20pm. For further questions please contact gsisbus_peak@hksynergytravel.com or cwb.bus@gmail.com .

Further programme information as well as course descriptions of all activities (AAs & ECAs), the general terms and conditions and the term calendar are available on our website under the following link: (https://mygsis.gsis.edu.hk/learning/outside-the-classroom/eca/). Information provided is subject to change.

Please find attached the following documents for your reference: 

  • ECA (Extra Curricular Activities) Schedule (Term 1) 2021/22
  • AA (Afternoon Activities) Schedule (Term 1) 2021/22
  • ECA/AA Calendar (Term 1) 2021/22 (15/11/2021 - 28/01/2022)

* provided information subject to change

Please feel free to contact us under ecacoordinator@gsis.edu.hk or afternoonactivities@gsis.edu.hk  if you have any further questions.

With warm regards,

Cornelia Zavou
Student Service Team
Email

German International Stream

Kindergarten Corner

Dear Parents

We trust you had a lovely autumn break and were able to spend relaxing, eventful days with your children.

The CPD (Continuing Professional Development) Day was planned to be very versatile for our teachers. It included a workshop with a speech therapist (EKG), a presentation of an alternative language development documentation (GKG), projects for our House Teams and ideas to improve our Pok Fu Lam campus.

House Teams

In the next few weeks, we will prepare the children for the Sports Day at the end of November, and on this day, they will do the sports activities in their team. We will keep up with the team spirit by learning the different house team cheers and chants. This Sports event is to build team spirit and not be competitive.

Parents' Information Days

Please do not forget to book your appointment this weekend for the upcoming Parents’ Information Days.

We look forward to the parent-child lantern making in the coming week and wish you a nice weekend.

Sophie Burdel
Head of Kindergarten
Email
Eileen Mah
Deputy Head of Kindergarten and Deputy Child Protection Officer Pok Fu Lam Campus
Email

Departmental News and Announcements

No updates / announcements this week.

Primary Corner

Primary Wellbeing Week Highlights!

From October 18th - 22nd, GSIS Primary-Peak Wellbeing Week offered the chance to connect and come together across classes and streams, and left both students and staff feeling connected and engaged with the broader school community. Our Wellbeing Week themes this year were Moving, Collaborating, Creating and Caring, and the students joined in a range of activities, including arts and crafts, mindfulness, gardening, team-building games, nature walks, and drama. Embedded within these fun activities were opportunities to practice and demonstrate kindness, collaboration, empathy, listening, sharing, and self-awareness, all of which contribute to our school community and values. 

On the themed Dress Up Days we celebrated wellbeing in our pyjamas, favourite vegetable costumes, wacky hairstyles, and team sports jerseys. The enthusiasm and creativity of staff, students, and parents helped spread the spirit of Wellbeing Week, and offered conversation starters to foster new connections.

The counselling team would like to share some photo highlights from Wellbeing Week 2021 HERE. We’d also like to share this video that summarises the infectiously positive energy of Wellbeing Week and celebrates everyone’s participation. Thank you to the teachers and staff for the activities they hosted and their dedicated support of our students’ physical, social-emotional, and cognitive wellbeing. We are already looking forward to Wellbeing Week 2022! 

Sports Carnival

What a vibrant feeling it was walking through the cheering students, the sound of laughter and the exhausted but happy students on Sports Carnival. 

When I walked in the Sports Hall I immediately saw the “Tower of Babel” - only together they could manage to reach the top of the tower. Hands reaching down to pull kids up, Kids lifting each other from the bottom to get on top - these are memories I will keep in mind when thinking of collaboration.It was an impressive two days with many valuable moments.

Please watch the video which will give you some impression of the day.

Internet Safety for kids

Please save the date!

On Tuesday 30 November, 6 pm we will invite all GPD parents to the work “Internet Safety for kids”. We will talk about the chances and challenges we are facing when we and the kids are using the internet.

An invitation with details and a sign in will follow. 

Parents Information Days (PIDs)

This week you received an invitation to register for the PIDs, if you haven´t done so, please follow the link to book an appointment with the class teachers.

Priska Erni
Head of German Primary Department
Email
Inga Riedel-Narayan
Deputy Head of German Primary Department
Email

Departmental News and Announcements

Peak Campus – Photo Week Ordering Process

Secondary Corner

Departmental News and Announcements

Peak Campus – Photo Week Ordering Process

English International Stream

Kindergarten Corner

Dear Parents

We trust you had a lovely autumn break and were able to spend relaxing, eventful days with your children.

The CPD (Continuing Professional Development) Day was planned to be very versatile for our teachers. It included a workshop with a speech therapist (EKG), a presentation of an alternative language development documentation (GKG), projects for our House Teams and ideas to improve our Pok Fu Lam campus.

House Teams

In the next few weeks, we will prepare the children for the Sports Day at the end of November, and on this day, they will do the sports activities in their team. We will keep up with the team spirit by learning the different house team cheers and chants. This Sports event is to build team spirit and not be competitive.

Parents' Information Days

Please do not forget to book your appointment this weekend for the upcoming Parents’ Information Days.

We look forward to the parent-child lantern making in the coming week and wish you a nice weekend.

Sophie Burdel
Head of Kindergarten
Email
Eileen Mah
Deputy Head of Kindergarten and Deputy Child Protection Officer Pok Fu Lam Campus
Email

Departmental News and Announcements

No updates / announcements this week.

Primary Corner

Dear Parents,

Wellbeing Week

From October 18th - 22nd, GSIS Primary Wellbeing Week offered the chance to connect and come together across classes and streams, and left both students and staff feeling connected and engaged with the broader school community. Our Wellbeing Week themes this year were Moving, Collaborating, Creating and Caring, and the students joined in a range of activities, including arts and crafts, mindfulness, gardening, team-building games, nature walks, and drama. Embedded within these fun activities were opportunities to practice and demonstrate kindness, collaboration, empathy, listening, sharing, and self-awareness, all of which contribute to our school community and values. 

On the themed Dress Up Days we celebrated wellbeing in our pyjamas, favourite vegetable costumes, wacky hairstyles, and team sports jerseys. The enthusiasm and creativity of staff, students, and parents helped spread the spirit of Wellbeing Week, and offered conversation starters to foster new connections.

The counselling team would like to share some photo highlights from Wellbeing Week 2021 HERE. We’d also like to share this video that summarizes the infectiously positive energy of Wellbeing Week and celebrates everyone’s participation. Thank you to the teachers and staff for the activities they hosted and their dedicated support of our students’ physical, social-emotional, and cognitive wellbeing. We are already looking forward to Wellbeing Week 2022! 

Sports Carnival

What a vibrant feeling it was walking through the cheering students, the sound of laughter and the exhausted but happy students on Sports Carnival. When you walked in the Sports Hall you immediately saw the “Tower of Babel” - only together could the children manage to reach the top of the tower. Hands reaching down to pull kids up, kids lifting each other from the bottom to get on top - these are memories we will keep in mind when thinking of collaboration. It was an impressive two days with many valuable moments. Please watch the video which will give you some impression of the day.

Parents Information Days (PIDs)

This week you received an invitation to register for the PIDs, if you haven't done so, please follow the link to book an appointment with the class teachers.

Have a fantastic weekend!

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

Departmental News and Announcements

Peak Campus – Photo Week Ordering Process

Secondary Corner

ESD Weekly Notices w/b 8 Nov

I hope that you and your children had a relaxing and restful break. We have a busy half-term ahead in the lead up to the Xmas break.

A lengthier notice than usual this week (apologies)

PID

Coming up soon, we have our  first Parent Information Days (PID) of the year. These take place in the afternoon/evening of 25 Nov and the morning of 26 Nov for Y07-11 and on the afternoon/evening of 8 Dec for Y12/13. 

As previously mentioned, for Y07-11, we will offering a mixed approach of online and in-person meetings:

  • On Thursday 25 Nov, from 4pm to 7.30pm, teachers will be available for online meetings with Y07-11 parents via Google Meet (similar to PIDs in the last year or so)
  • On Friday 26 Nov, from 8am to 1.00pm, teachers will be available for in-person meetings with Y07-11 parents. These will, for the most part, take place in the Sportshall on the 4th floor of the Lower Building  (similar to PIDs from the halcyon pre-COVID times)

This is somewhat of an experimental approach, and we are trying to accommodate the preferences of as many people as possible, and give some flexibility to parents as far as we can. As always, feedback is welcome and will be useful in planning future PIDs.

Please could parents note the following:

  • For in-person consultations (Friday 26), we ask that only 1 parent attend in order to reduce crowding. Students should not attend. Unfortunately, only fully vaccinated parents are able to attend in person. 
  • Appointments for both sessions (Thurs and Fri) will be made through the ‘Calendly’ software. Detailed instructions, as well as the relevant links, will be sent to parents via email on Mon 8 Nov. When booking, parents will need to select ‘Google Meet’ or ‘In-person’ as appropriate.
  • Please understand that it is not feasible for the teachers to mix-and-match online and in-person in a single session.. So, for example, if you prefer Thursday evening but wish to meet in-person, we will not be able to accommodate this. Thursday is online only, Friday in-person only.
  • If you are unable to make an appointment on PID with a particular teacher at a time convenient for you, please make use of that teacher’s Weekly Consultation Time (link)
  • Parents should not feel obligated to make appointments with every teacher who teaches your child. We welcome any discussions with parents, but it is not an expectation that all parents need to meet with all teachers. Of course, if you wish to, or need to, meet every teacher, please make appointments accordingly. 

For Y12/13 parents, we will consider how best to offer the senior PID on 8 December in the light of experience/feedback on the PID for the younger years. More details will be shared on this as soon as possible.

Finally, please note that there will be no classes for all secondary students on Friday 26 November, as teachers will all be committed to PID. Students should stay home and work on the assignments provided by their teachers (via Google Classroom or similar)

Sports Day

Unfortunately, given the current EBD regulations, and the restrictions on venues, we will not be able to run our secondary Sports Day as planned on 18 November. We will look to (hopefully) have a Sports Day later in the year, circumstances permitting. 18 November will be a regular school day with classes as normal.

Exams and Mocks (Y11,13)

We are currently nearing the business end of our exam courses for Y11 and Y13. An important part of preparation for the public exams in May/June are our ‘Mock’ examinations in January. For both Y11 and Y13, these take place from 10 January to 21 January inclusive. During the mock exam period, students will be on study leave meaning that they do not have to attend school unless they have an exam scheduled. So, after the Xmas break, Y11 and Y13 will have one week of taught classes, followed by two weeks of mock exams/study leave.

Should students wish to study at school during study leave, they may do so in the senior study area of the library. Please note that this is an area for quiet study, not for social gatherings.

The full schedule for the mock exam period, with all exam times, will communicated to students by Ms Crouch in the weeks to come.

The mock exams are an opportunity for students to gauge how they perform under examination conditions. The exams represent a great opportunity to learn how effective revision has been as well as practising exam technique. They also allow students and teachers to assess whether there are any gaps in knowledge or understanding that can be addressed in the months following the mock exams. A detailed review of the papers in terms of content, technique and structure will help guide preparation for the final exams.

Whilst it is important that students prepare properly for the mock exams, it is also very important that they do not overburden yourselves with excessive study or revision. Remember that the mock exams are just that: a mock. Doing too much revision is counterproductive and leads to stress and tiredness. These mock exams are, after all, just a practice run. The Y11 and Y13 class teachers will be discussing effective revision techniques and strategies with students in the class periods later this term.

Some students in Y09 or Y10 may also be involved in mock exams for I/GCSE (or AS) German or Chinese. Students will have already been briefed by their subject teacher if this is the case. Again, the exact dates for the mock exams for these students will be confirmed soon and we will endeavour to schedule in such a way as to minimise disruption to taught classes in other subjects. 

Ken Stevenson
Head of English Secondary Department
Email


Departmental News and Announcements

Peak Campus – Photo Week Ordering Process

Student Achievements

Theodore (Y03C) won second prize in Scholastic Chess Competition Division M

Congratulations to Theodore (Y03C ) for getting second in Scholastic Chess Competition under Division M

Yuhan (Y11) - Finalist of John Locke Essay Competition 2021

Congratulations to Yuhan (Y11C) for being selected as one of the finalists for the John Locke Essay Competition 2021 in the History Category, for the question of "Has the construct of gender been more beneficial or harmful to humanity?"

https://www.gsis.edu.hk/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/History-shortlist.jpg, https://www.gsis.edu.hk/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/Gala_dinner_invitation_2021_25th_September.01.jpg

(Click thumbnail/s to enlarge image)

Congratulations to GSIS Senior Debate Team!

Last week our GSIS senior interschool team members auditioned for a place on the Hong Kong National World Schools Debate Team and each student secured a place on the team and development squad. The students will train for the International World Schools Tournament at the end of the school year. This is a great achievement for our debaters. They follow in the footsteps of past GSIS debaters on the HK Team and are certainly excellent role models for our junior debaters who they coach.

Congratulations Alexandra, Rachel, Zac and Edgar.

Krystyna Butchart

Email

Wellbeing Corner

We hope you had a good school start.

For the remaining weeks of the year, we wish you enough energy, confidence in yourselves, sufficient motivation and time for small breaks.

Don't forget: You can do it.

Enjoy your weekend

Your School Counsellors




Highlights of the Week

[sgdg path="Gazette/This Weeks Happenings/Gazette 65"]

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