Hanoi, 25th November 2023
Under the warm sun and a gentle breeze, the British Vietnamese International School (BVIS) Hanoi recently hosted a distinctive and exciting event to commemorate its 10th anniversary – an experiential picnic right on the campus. This event served not only as an occasion to reflect on past journeys but also as an opportunity for the BVIS community to gather, interact, and relish a joyful atmosphere.
The celebration saw the presence of representatives from Nord Anglia Education, the world's largest international education organisation, boasting 85 premium international schools in 33 countries, with over 80 thousand students and more than 15 thousand teachers and support staff, of which BVIS Hanoi is a proud member. Notable attendees included Mr. Shaun Williams – Managing Director of Southeast Asia, Middle East, and India; Mr. Mark Sayer – Founding Principal of BVIS Hanoi; Mr. Richard Vaughan – Principal of BIS Hanoi; Ms. Duong Nguyen – Former Business Director of the BIS Group in Vietnam; Ms. Linh Pham – Former Business Director of BVIS Hanoi, along with numerous students, parents, the school leadership team, and all teachers and staff. The ceremony, with about 1,000 attendees, was deemed a success, featuring many meaningful and emotional activities.
Mr. Shaun Williams expressed, "We steadfastly believe in BVIS as a unique international school, providing world-class education programs with a flexible bilingual model. This equips native and international students with the ability to learn multiple languages, positioning them to become global citizens, capable of studying and working anywhere in the world, including Vietnam. I am profoundly respectful of the parents who, over the past 10 years, have demonstrated wisdom, trust, and love for our unique and special school, BVIS."
Exploration of Culture and Art
Amidst the greenery of the campus, the picnic unfolded not just as a venue for interaction and entertainment but also as a mobile "museum" of culture and art. The intimate space, adorned with artworks from the BVIS community, vividly showcased the love that students and staff hold for the school. This was manifested through various contest entries, including poetry, bilingual comics, paintings, electronic designs, sculptures, and architectural models.
A Colourful Adventure
A multitude of exciting games and entertainment activities suitable for various ages allowed the BVIS community to explore traditional skills and the latest techniques. Inflatable houses, fishing, sculpture bowls for early years and primary school children, as well as areas for learning and playing with Virtual Reality (AI), and high-quality craft experience courses, created a vibrant, fun, and immensely useful atmosphere for all members of BVIS Hanoi.
Cultural and Culinary Exchange
The picnic was not only an opportunity for participation in art, movement, and entertainment activities but also a chance to savor diverse cuisine. The culinary buffet area showcased typical Vietnamese dishes, prepared, presented, and served in a modern Western style. This setup created an immersive space, highlighting the richness and multiculturalism inherent in the bilingual international BVIS.
Performing Arts and Dramatic Music
Featuring the participation of both teachers and students, the musical and artistic performances created memorable moments. From joyful and pure presentations to emotionally charged musical and artistic performances, the event fostered a shared sense of joy, leaving an indelible mark on everyone.
Success Stories of School Alumni
With six cohorts of graduates comprising over 300 students, BVIS Hanoi has witnessed many of them graduate from university and embark on their professional journeys worldwide. At the celebration, alumni, regardless of geographical distance, sent wishes, messages, and artworks to express their enduring love for the school, teachers, and friends. Some students attended the event, sharing their personal stories to inspire juniors, teachers, and staff, fortifying belief in the field of education.
Le Duc Anh Shun, a Class of 2020 alumnus, currently a final-year international student at the School of Political Science and Economics at Waseda University (Japan) shared, "I apologize on behalf of my friends who couldn't be here today from the US, Canada, UK, Australia, Korea, Saigon, ... Regardless, I want to convey that we cherished our time at BVIS Hanoi. Our heartfelt thanks to the school, teachers, and staff who have made BVIS feel like home."
Nguyen My Anh, a former student of the Class of 2021 and currently a Psychology student, founder, and Head of the Musical Theater Club at RMIT Vietnam University, said, "The years at BVIS, participating in diverse learning activities, and receiving encouragement from highly specialized and dedicated teachers have helped me form passions, ambitions, and interests. Today, I feel empowered to study and engage in activities I am passionate about and excel in. The origin of that passion lies in the roles in school plays, the in-depth learning content in A-level Psychology classes, and, most importantly, the dedication of teachers who made my last years of secondary school both interesting and challenging, with international certification exams."
Gratitude and Future Prospects
The anniversary serves not only as an occasion to express gratitude to all those who contributed to the success of BVIS Hanoi but also as a stepping stone for new journeys ahead. Appreciation for the diligent contributions from teachers and staff who have been with the school for more than 10 years has stirred emotions and expressions of gratitude from employees and parents alike. Mr. Nguyen Vu Hai Anh, a parent for a decade, shared with the BVIS community, "Ten years ago, I entrusted my 3-year-old son to this school, and being here today proves that my belief was correct. Every day my child attends class is a happy day. Talking about friends in class, the love, kindness, and care of teachers, from Vietnamese to foreign teachers, is a daily conversation. Missing a class, for any reason, is the saddest thing for him."
The school, in its celebration, dedicates a significant part of its gratitude to the families of students who have been part of the BVIS journey for more than 10 years. Principal Paul Holyome shared, "At BVIS, the collaboration between family and school is especially important. You want the best for your children and so do we." This collaboration will yield optimal results when there is mutual trust, understanding, and respect. BVIS expresses gratitude to the thousands of students and families who have consistently trusted and accompanied the school.
Towards the end of the celebration, a short film recounting BVIS Hanoi's journey over the past 10 years prompted guests, parents, and students to pause and contemplate. The film shed light on why BVIS has achieved remarkable success, such as:
- Being one of only two international schools in Hanoi with classes for students from 2 to 18 years old
- Maintaining an average IGCSE and A-level pass rate of 99% over all years
- Having recent graduation courses with A-level graduates enrolling in the top 10 most prestigious universities globally,
- And being the only international school in Vietnam to win the Well-Being Award for Schools from the National Children's Bureau and the Optimus Education Organization from the UK in 2022
This remarkable picnic event signifies not only an important milestone in the school's history but also a strong motivation to continue the development journey and affirm its position as a leading international school in Hanoi.
Please find below for a documentary: BVIS Hanoi 2013-2023 - a decade of love