27 August, 2021

Mr Ian Battersby: Weekly Update 27/08/2021

Mr Ian Battersby: Weekly Update 27/08/2021 - mr-ian-battersby-weekly-update-27-08-2021
Mr Ian Battersby: Weekly Update 27/08/2021 Adapting to Virtual School and ensuring that the tools for communication and collaboration are in place.

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but building on the new.“ Socrates (470 - 399 BC)

Coming to terms with change can be challenging.  The circumstances that we currently find ourselves in require us to change how school functions.  In order to continue to provide the best possible education, the team of teachers and teaching assistants have focused a great deal of energy into providing meaningful online learning opportunities for the children.  What’s more, we are looking to build further on the start that has been made, for example, with the introduction of virtual co-curricular activities.

This week, Ms Sarah, Ms Maria and I have been joining classes in the morning to greet the children. What has struck me is how adaptable the children are.  It was wonderful to see 4 and 5 year old children independently managing Google Meets; muting and unmuting microphones themselves, raising their hands to answer questions and patiently listening to instructions from the teacher. 

 F3 Virtual Timetable

Parents’ Information Evening

Thank you to everyone who was able to join us on Thursday for the Parents’ Information Evening.  The core values that underpin all that we do at BIS remain unchanged, so in many ways we covered similar material to previous years.  However there were some specific details that we shared regarding online learning:

  1. Logging in using your child’s username and password

It is really important for your child to log in using the @bisvietnam.com details that you have been sent.  Thank you to those parents who have set their children up in this way, but it is difficult for teachers (especially our specialist teachers) when they are trying to engage with the children but cannot see their name.

  1. Seesaw Class and Seesaw Family

There are two Seesaw Apps and you need them both.  What is the difference?


  1. Seesaw Class is an online tool that we use for teaching.  The children will use it all the time.
  2. Seesaw Family is more a tool for communication.  With this app you can directly communicate with your child's teachers.


Getting these right will enhance your child’s learning experience, so if you need support with either logging in correctly or the Seesaw apps,  please contact Ms Maria or Ms Sarah (details below).

If you would like to see the presentation of the Parents’ Information Evening Presentation, please click on the link below:

Early Years & Infant Campus Parents Information Evening Presentation


Community Pic 1

Supporting Vulnerable Families During the Summer Lockdown

As Vietnam experienced a surge in Covid-19 community transmission cases over the summer and imposed lockdown restrictions in Ho Chi Minh City, the situation became especially difficult for those in the more vulnerable communities.  Many lost their jobs and therefore their primary source of income and were unable to cover basic expenses such as food and rent.

Our community partner Planète Enfants & Développement (PE&D), who has social workers situated in these communities, identified 100 families with children under the age of 6 years in Thủ Đức and Tan Phu districts who were in desperate need of support.  In the beginning of June 2021 PE&D  reached out to the BIS Community Service department with a request to join them in funding the purchase and distribution of food packages.

We would like to thank the entire BIS community who have supported various events over the past two years such as the Community Book Sales, Community Clothing Swaps, Miscellaneous Parent Donations as well as the Virtual Community Quiz;we were able to pool the cash on hand to support the purchase of 100 food parcels which included:

● 2 bags of rice (10kg)

● 1 box of instant noodle (30 packs)

● 1 bottle of cooking oil (1l)

● 1 pack of sausage (160g)

● 1 bag of sugar (1kg)

● 1 bottle of fish sauce (900ml)

● 2 tins of fish (310g)

● 1 bottle of chili sauce (270g)

Community pic 2

In collaboration with the Ho Chi Minh City Association for Children’s Rights Protection (HACRP), PE&D began the challenging task of arranging for the food to be distributed while ensuring that the 5K safety guidelines were complied with.  They also set up a hotline to support the beneficiaries and a flyer was printed out and attached to each of the packages with information on how to obtain support.

This is an ongoing project and we would encourage you to be on the lookout for more information which will be sent out by a group of Year 12 students who have adopted this cause and campaign as their IBDP CAS Project.  There will be opportunities for all to become involved.

Tracey Brownrigg, Co-Curricular Coordinator and Community Service Project Manager

Primary Parent Teacher Student Conferences


The teachers are looking forward to meeting with all of the parents during our Virtual Parent Teacher Student Conferences that will take place on Wednesday 8th and Thursday 9th September. Only just over a week away, these meetings will provide you with an excellent opportunity to speak one to one with your child’s class teacher.  A letter was sent to all parents today with more details.

Primary Leadership Team Coffee Morning

Primary Coffee Morning Sept202102

We are delighted to share details with you of our first Primary Leadership Coffee Morning.  It will take place on Wednesday 8th September from 8.30 - 10am.and is an opportunity for parents to catch up with the leadership team, hear about the term ahead, hear from the PTG and meet some new faces among our parent community.

The link to the meeting is here.  This will be shared via Seesaw the day before the coffee morning also.

Virtual Co-Curricular Activities (VCCAs)


This week you will have received your copy of our Virtual Co-Curricular Activities Booklet. Inside you can choose from free live or recorded VCCA’s or paid VCCAs. These sessions will run for 5 weeks.

Sign Up:

  • Thursday 26th of August at 8.00am, until
  • Tuesday 31st August at 12.00pm (noon)

Notification of successful CCAs

  • Wednesday 1st September


  • Wednesday 1st September, until
  • Monday 6th September at 12:00pm

VCCAs Begin

  • Monday 20th September

If payments have not been made, we will chase these up, but after Thursday 9th September, if we have not been able to locate payment, the space will be cancelled.

To sign up you need to use SchoolsBuddy. Instructions can be found in the handbook. If you are having technical difficulties you can watch the help webinar that was deliver earlier today - click here or please contact Ms Van at Van.Pho@bisvietnam.com  Ms Sarah at sarah.curran@bisvietnam.com  or Ms Maria at Maria.Shooter@bisvietnam.com

School Buddy

Instrumental Lessons for Primary Students

The Benefits of Making Music Together 5

We are very happy to share the following information with parents regarding Instrumental Lessons for your children. As you know, we unfortunately cannot offer our usual Instrumental Lessons Programme at BIS this term.  However, several of our instrumental teachers are offering online lessons. 

If you have an instrument at home, and would like to have online lessons, please see the list below and contact the relevant teacher.  This opportunity is open to students, parents, and teachers of any musical level/ability.

Please note, this would be a private arrangement between you and your instrumental teacher, so you would need to sort out payments and lesson times with them directly.

Instrumental teachers available for online lessons



Phone number

Email address


Mr Viet



Cello / Double bass

Mr Minh




Clarinet / Saxophone

Mr Dung



Drums / Guitar

Mr Davis




Ms Yen




Ms Ha



Guitar / Ukulele

Mr Aaka





Mr Sau




Mr Hoi




Violin / Viola

Ms Huong




Ms Ly



Keziah Jacombs, Music Teacher and Head of Instrumental Programme

30/08/21         Vietnamese Language Coffee Morning

31/08/21         Vietnamese Lessons Start

02/09/21-        Public holiday

03/09/21         Public holiday

08/09/21         Virtual Headteachers Coffee Morning @ 8.30am

08/09/21         Parent Teacher Student Conferences

09/09/21         Parent Teacher Student Conferences

13/09/21          Virtual Co-Curricular Activities: Block 1 Begins

15/10/21          Virtual Co-Curricular Activities: Block 1 Ends

16/10/21          Half-term break begins

25/10/21          Term 1.2 begins

Health and Safety

Here is a great site that has some pictures and moves you can encourage your child to do after they have been sitting at a desk. Do remember to build some exercise into your daily routine.


Please remember the 5K to keep safe.

ministry health poster_FINAL

PTG 2021 - 2022


Welcome to the new school year. We are looking forward to meeting with many of you soon. A particular warm welcome to our new families joining BIS. For more information about the PTG, to connect with us personally, or if you would like to  support as a volunteer, please email us directly on primaryptgbis@gmail.com

We look forward to seeing you at the Primary Leadership Coffee Morning on Wednesday, September 8th.  Thank you for your continued support!  

Primary PTG Coordinators 

And Finally…

As the first full week of virtual learning draws to a close, I am so pleased to see how so many children have already established new working routines and begun to build relationships with their teachers.  Routines and relationships will continue to remain a focus for the following days.  Once again, I ask for patience as we overcome the inevitable difficulties of working in new ways , and be assured that our teams will be putting their energy into providing learning opportunities that will result in the children making great progress.

Also, may I remind everyone that Thursday and Friday are public holidays so there will be no online lessons on those days.  They provide a good moment to get off the screens and to spend quality time with our families.

Have a safe and restful weekend.

Ian Battersby
Head of the Early Years and Infant Campus