Dear DCIS Parents,
What a fantastic term we have had in the Secondary school. I am very proud of our young people and their hard work and achievements.
Anyone who follows my @dcisheadteacher Instagram or Twitter feeds will have noticed the exciting development of the new Secondary block which is certainly moving at a pace. The Naming of the new restaurant competition has been very popular and I am very much looking forward to picking the winner next term. The winner will have their name turned into a logo design, receive a framed picture of the logo, a voucher from our restaurant caterers Victus and officially be part of the opening of the restaurant in August.
This half term has seen 13 different trips take place, from the FOBISIA Maths trip and the Year 11 Geography field trip to the Global Campus Tanzania Expedition, the Microsoft trip for girls and the NAE Performing Arts Festival in Hanoi. I would like to say a huge thank you to our wonderful staff who give up a huge amount of their time organising and running these trips.
At the end of February I went to Phuket to support our U13 FOBISIA team competing against other British international schools in Thailand. As a former PE Teacher I was amazed by the haul of medals the students achieved over the weekend. 21 gold medals in Athletics, gold in Boys football, silver in Swimming (where we medalled in 38/44 races!), silver in Girls football and bronze in Girls basketball. Just as important as all of those medals is the way our students conducted themselves as sports men and women over the week. I witnessed students go through the highs and lows a professional athlete would experience but our students were as gracious in success and defeat and showed real grit and determination when faced with injuries, losing and fatigue. You all made your school proud.
We held a very successful Careers Fair where we welcomed 34 guest parents, who volunteered their time most generously to meet our Years 10-13 students. This was a fantastic opportunity for our students to meet professionals from a range of fields, including medicine, media, finance, science, construction, technology and the arts. The students were able to ask questions about career paths, education and qualifications, and the rewards and challenges of different careers. We received really positive feedback from our students about the event and how much it has helped them in thinking about their next steps. We sincerely thank our parent community for giving up time from their busy schedules to support the event.
It was great to see students experience a number of cross-curricular activities this term with our Humanities House Day, Year 7 STEAM week and our Science Week, with activities such as fire and lightning shows, a visiting planetarium and a bone hunt, finishing off with the very popular Secondary Science Quiz in Cooper Hall.
We are obviously gearing up for the ‘business end’ of the academic year, particularly for the students in Years 11 and 13. The Year 13 students have been through a rigorous set of IB mock exams to help prepare them for the real thing shortly after the break and our Year 11 students have already been through practical moderation for GCSE PE and drama, which I am told went extremely well. The Elevate Education workshops for both year groups on the topics ‘Ace your Exams’ and ‘Finishing Line’ were well received.
Olympic silver medallist Jonny Brownlee and fellow triathletes Yuko Takahashi, Summer Rappaport and Jayden Schofield also visited us this term to train with a group of selected students. Our students had a fantastic time and were buzzing with excitement as they got some pro-tips from the athletes.
The rehearsals of the Secondary drama production Arabian Nights are well under way and I am looking forward to seeing the result of all work put into this in Term 3.
We recently celebrated our IBDP students’ CAS achievements with a CAS Showcase. Each of the Year 13 IBDP students designed and presented a poster board, charting their CAS journey, including highlights and lowlights. They shared this with their teachers and our Year 12 students, who are currently undertaking the CAS programme. It was impressive to see the huge range of experiences the students have sought and the depth of engagement. I thoroughly enjoyed hearing how much the students have appreciated their CAS experiences and the new interests and skills they have developed, some of which they even plan to keep up.
The recent tragic events in New Zealand gives us all a timely reminder about the need for being kind and developing kindness in the world, and for me as Headteacher, the importance of continuing to foster this in our school culture. The Prime Minister of New Zealand recently stated, "We each hold the power [to cure hate and fear], in our words and in our actions, in our daily acts of kindness. Let that be the legacy of the 15th of March". As such, we are asking all students to donate an act of kindness to the Kindness for Christchurch campaign that will be initiated in Term 3.
I wish you all a restful and Happy Easter break and look forward to seeing you back for our final term of this academic year.
Mr Craig Bull
Head of Secondary School