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IB News - 3rd June 2016

02 June 2016

We couldn’t let a fortnight go without more celebration, so these past two weeks have created mixed emotions amongst staff and students where we look back with admiration at all the Year 13s have achieved in their two years on the IB Diploma Programme and wish them well for their futures. 

Friday 20th May saw the inaugural Cap and Gown ceremony at NAIS Pudong where the Year 13 students dressed up in their formal graduation gowns and mortar boards, they then processed around the school before they took their seats in the auditorium.  Parents looked on proudly as Mr Graham reminisced about the very day when they had all sat together in that auditorium at the beginning of the learning journey.  With a heartfelt and personal reflection on each student and the contribution that they have made to the school over the years, the students walked on stage one by one to receive their scrolls.  We are very proud of our Year 13 students and the positive way that they have embraced this opportunity.

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Fortunately, it was not quite time to say goodbye and we were able to enjoy one more evening with our leavers and their families at the Graduation Prom at the famous Peace Hotel on the Bund. The evening started with drinks on the rooftop terrace overlooking the iconic skyline of Shanghai with plenty of opportunity for photos with friends. Our Year 13 scrub up a treat and the meal afterwards offered them the chance to say their thanks to family, friends and teachers who have supported them along the way as well as pledge their hopes for the future and wish each other well through formal speeches. It was a beautiful evening capped off with plenty of dancing and fond farewell hugs and we are very grateful to Mrs Helen Hunt and Mrs Barbara Niggli for organizing the event.

Our Year 12 students, however, continue to follow in the footsteps of our leavers but in their own special and inimitable way as they plough through their end-of-year exams with determination and diligence.  They have now completed their first TOK essays with expert guidance from the three muskateers Messrs. Graham, Siccardi and Gichana.

Never time to let the dust settle, the Year 12s then move into their Group Four Project next week which is a mandatory inquiry-based learning experience which allows students to put their classroom learning into real-world problem solving context.  This is an essential part of their IBDP.

Finally, in Core Focus Week which occurs in the last week of term, we will be doing a CAS review and looking at planning for next year. Students will finalise their EE research proposals and make sure that they are ready to execute them. The goal is to make sure that students are ready to go out into the summer, fully equipped and prepared to finalise their research. They will be experiencing the TOK presentation with a mock - similar to what will happen at the end of the year and those grades will be used to determine their predicted grades for TOK and their university applications. There will also be time set aside for Higher Education where students will be opening their UCAS and CommonApp accounts, drafting their personal statements or college essays and completing their Bridge U profiles.

Higher Education

The Year 12 students have all been sent details of their Bridge U accounts which is a Higher Education platform that helps match universities to their preferences. Parents are welcome to gain access to the advice given on this site.  If you would like to be included, please send me an email at and I can add.

Year 13 students should ensure that they have responded to UCAS, if they have applied to study in the UK after graduation, detailing their first and insurance choices. 

Global Campus and other news

Global Campus:

The Leadership Academy is an amazing opportunity for students aged 16-18 (including students who are leaving school this summer), to experience life at one of the world’s most prestigious universities – Oxford. In a two-week programme, students will be taught by Oxford academics and postgraduate students, as well as having exclusive admissions lectures from the university’s admissions office. They will participate in a wide-ranging discussion about issues including international development and sustainability, which will culminate in a formal debate based on the recent Paris Climate Change Conference. In their downtime they will have the opportunity to explore Oxford as well as heading for day trips to London.

This course would be ideal for any Upper Secondary students who took part in the Debate League this year, but it would also appeal to anyone interested in History, Politics, Geography, Economics, current affairs, or to anyone who wants to see more of Oxford student life/the UK. There are 60 places available and we would like to fill these ASAP.

A comprehensive brochure with further details can be found here:

Dates for the diary

Sat 4 June               Summer Fun Day

Mon 6 June             Year 12 Group 4 Project (until Weds 8 June)

Thurs 9 June           Dragon Boat Festival – school closed but IGCSE exams continue

Fri 10 June              CCAs end for Term 3

Fri 24 June              School ends 12 noon      

We wish you all a lovely weekend and hope to see as many of you as possible at the Summer Fun Day.

Best wishes,

Kathryn Watson
Higher Education and IB Pastoral leader