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Our Principal Writes: Class of 2015 Ready to Change the World

28 May 2015

I have always been firmly of the view that the best testimony to the success of a school is the quality of its students.  

  • Graduates of the British International School Shanghai Puxi celebrate their graduation.
  • Year 13s graduating from the British International School Shanghai Puxi

This year’s graduating class have most definitely confirmed that view for me. I had the great pleasure of joining them to celebrate their graduation from BISS Puxi on Friday at the graduation ceremony and on Monday evening at the Shangri La Hotel Pudong at the graduation dinner. Their behaviour, camaraderie, their work ethic and their hunger to learn and develop were all self- evident over the last two years. At the two graduation events they were an absolute joy to be with and it was lovely to hear about their exciting future plans. They were great company, they conducted themselves beautifully and left us feeling very proud and honoured to have played a part in their education.

Our graduates have many attributes and talents which mean they are ready to set off for university and beyond on the rest of their life’s journey.  They are self-aware and clearly conversant with their strengths both learned and innate, which is hugely important in the face of challenges ahead.

They are thoughtful individuals who have well-tuned thinking skills and the capacity to think in a variety of different ways e.g. creatively and analytically. They also have well developed metacognition and are aware of their own thinking and of the way it can be used when involved in problem solving.  Allied to this, they are intellectually inquisitive. They have a hunger for knowledge; they want to understand the world around them.

By the very nature of their life experiences to date , the school they have attended and the course of studies they have undertaken, they have an international outlook and with it an understanding and appreciation of other perspectives. This is hugely important in what is a rapidly shrinking global community.

Our graduates also have a realisation of the importance of community and of the benefits of playing a full part in the life of a community, supporting others and being supported themselves.  As well as this, they have an appreciation of the fact that a community needs to take into consideration the interests of all of its constituent parts over the interests of the individual.

Having taken on and overcome a variety of challenges both inside and outside the classroom during their time with us, mostly notably the IB Diploma Programme, which is the most rigorous post 16 course of study currently available, our leavers go out into the world with great confidence. Our alumni regularly report that they find their first year at university relatively straightforward as a result of completing these two senior years at BISS Puxi.

They have also developed excellent communication skills on paper, verbally and through a variety of media. They can all speak more than one language, many are multi-lingual. Very few people are better placed to take advantage of the information age.

Finally, they have learned the importance of collaboration, they understand that you may be able to achieve quite a lot on your own, but that so much more is possible if you work as a team, appreciating and taking advantage of the skills and thinking of those around you.

In short BISS Puxi graduates 2015 are a special group of people who are well placed to help fulfil the last line of our school’s vision, to go out and…change the world.

- Kevin Foyle, Principal