Dear DCIS Parents and Guardians,
The end of year is always a mixture of emotions; joy at the completion of the last piece of homework for the year, excitement at new things to come, anxiety whilst waiting for all important exam results and sad farewells to those relocating and moving on. This year is no different as the students have worked incredibly hard and should be proud of all their achievements.
This final term has showed the pace never slows down at DCIS! We have had a number of key residential trips this term. We had twenty intrepid explorers make the long journey to Switzerland where they trekked in the Alps, climbed glaciers and sampled tasty local cheeses and chocolate. We had five of our brightest sparks visit the World Scholar’s Cup regional finals in Kuala Lumpur and compete against hundreds of other students in debates and quizzes. We are extremely proud to share that three of our students, Amelia, Thanh-Lan and Suhani have qualified for the global round at Yale University in the USA next year. We also had a small group of budding environmentalists travel to Brunei as part of our FOBISIA membership, and IB students complete biology and ESS fieldwork on Tioman island.
Year 7 have had a great first year in the Secondary School. They have shown themselves to be mature, hardworking and caring, and have coped with the new demands being placed on them well. Year 8 have cemented their place in the Secondary School and have provided much support for school life, with many students from Year 8 taking part in the DCIS MUN and organising a fun flash mob for an assembly in secret. Year 9 has been all about choices this year, with students selecting their iGCSE options for the next two years. Year 10 have made a great start to their iGCSE courses and have worked hard this year to keep themselves organised and on target. Year 11 finished this year with their external iGCSE examinations in May and June. We are very proud of the maturity they showed during the lead up to their exams and during the study period which they had. We had a lovely opportunity to see them all again at the Year 11 social event at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel just last week, and 70% of the cohort are staying on at DCIS to enter the IB Diploma programme. Our Year 12 students have had an exceptionally full year on the IB Diploma programme and have just completed their Year 12 mock exams. We are so proud of this first cohort of students and our plans are underway already for their graduation next year.
Other big events this term have included our annual Swimming Gala which saw students competing in traditional gala style races and a water polo competition. The students had a great day cheering each other on in their houses! Thank you to the PE Department for their flawless organisation of this event. Whilst the swimming galas were in full swing we were also hosting our inaugural DCIS MUN (Model United Nations) Competition. This was led by two Year 12 students as part of their CAS requirements and was a great opportunity for younger students to take part in high level thinking debates which involved prior research and a good understanding of their country stance on the debate topic of the day: refugees.
We are very excited to see the work begin on the library renovations which will give secondary students a dedicated library and study space. There will also be access to technology in the new library for KS3 students to use to aid homework and study. Our new BYOD policy for KS4 begins in August 2018 and we are looking forward to the enhancements to learning that can be had from greater access to technology in the classrooms. All staff will be attending training on the use of different learning technologies by our new Head of Secondary, Mr. Craig Bull, when he arrives in August.
As the year draws to a close I would like to thank all of the secondary staff for their incredible hard work and dedication this year. Our staff go beyond their responsibilities day in and day out to provide wonderful learning opportunities, and give up their holidays and weekends to accompany children on trips or attend training for their professional development. I would also like to thank all of our secondary parents for their unwavering support for their children’s learning and all our DCIS community events and activities.
Last but certainly not least, I would like to thank our students for their relentless desire to learn, their positive attitude and their ability to put a smile on our faces every day.
One final note that may excite our girls – due to a successful uniform campaign led by the Student Council, we are introducing ‘skorts’ as a uniform option for KS3 and KS4 girls from August 2018. They will be available to purchase from Lim’s from August 16th.
Best wishes for the summer ahead and best of luck to our students and families relocating,
Mrs. Carla Hyland
Acting Head of Secondary School