Dear Students and Parents,
Welcome to the start of what I have no doubt will be another exciting academic year at The British School of Beijing, Shunyi. We hope you all had the opportunity to have a well-earned rest and feel reinvigorated and ready to partake in all the opportunities available at The British school of Beijing. The number of offerings in the academic, sports, recreational and performing arts at BSB are ever expanding and we are confident that in our expanded provision there will be an opportunity for everyone to take on a fresh challenge.
We would like to thank all the families that were able to attend the Welcome Morning on 16th August and I hope that you had the opportunity to meet the key members of the Secondary School’s Leadership and Management teams. Additionally, I hope the opportunity for students to meet their tutors and new classmates, prior to the formal start of the academic year helped in reducing potential first day nerves.
The beginning of any new school year brings with it many opportunities for change and development. This year, we expect that to continue. To get us ready, many of the academic staff were in school early in August, planning and preparing classrooms and resources for students’ arrival on the 19th of August. BSB’s new staff arrived even earlier to allow them to settle in, find their bearings and participate in a mixture of in-school workshops and sample Beijing culture. Many of you will already have had the opportunity to meet with them this past week and I am sure that you will have found them to be a good addition to the already strong team of professionals at BSB.
On our return to BSB we were particularly pleased to see that the new IB Diploma (IBDP) Centre has been completed, this will further enhance the quality of teaching and learning at BSB Shunyi. In recent years, it has become increasingly recognised and accepted that the layout of our physical environment, particularly the opening up of spaces has a profound positive impact on productivity. In Chinese culture this has long been recognised through feng shui, this aims to use energy forces to harmonise individuals with their surrounding environment. It is with this idea that the new IBDP Centre was designed. The design concept stems from the traditional form of Jade which was circular; with Jade was associated the idea of books and learning. There is a famous Chinese transcription that says ‘in a book we find the house of gold and the shade of Jade’. The underlying meaning is that reading brings us everything and helps us learn the truth about beauty and life. As such creating a space that is in line with current research, traditional Chinese ideas, harmonious and well-resourced will provide the opportunity for our students to learn more effectively.
The IBDP centre will house an expanded open plan library, a brand-new multi-media hub, study room and a common room. Additionally, it will be the location of the IBDP coordinator, assistant IBDP coordinator and the University Guidance Counsellors.
In other parts of the school we have seen classrooms installed with large windows in the corridors to create a greater sense of openness, introduce more light and transparency. A new purpose built drama room, an early year’s enhanced learning area, designed to stimulate curiosity, exploration and creativity and an upgrading of the surface on the field.
The start of the year is also a time for reflection on the achievements of our students. We have already shared a truly outstanding set of Excellent results achieved by our IB Diploma students for the 2018/19 academic year, with a pass rate of 96% and a staggering 54% of our students achieving the bilingual diploma. Over 71% of our students achieved above the world average and averaged 34.7 points. I am very optimistic that with the continued excellent teaching and enhanced IBDP learning environment, next year’s results, will be even better.
We are currently awaiting the release of the I/GCSE examination results and will share these with you soon.
We are also excited by the some of the major educational developments planned for the secondary school. At the foremost is the improvement in ICT provision and the use of this to support and enhance the teaching and learning. As we begin on this exciting new initiative we will of course keep you informed.
We hope that our students have a particularly successful year and that they will take the many opportunities available to them to develop personally, socially and academically that will allow them to follow in the steps on the many successful BSB Alumni.
BSB Secondary Leadership Team
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