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Mr Ian Battersby: Weekly Update 8/1/2021

Ian Battersby
Ian Battersby (79 posts) Head Teacher, Early Years and Infant Campus View Profile

Happy New Year! Welcome back to our existing families, and an especially warm welcome to our families joining the BIS community this term. I hope that during the school holiday you were able to spend some time relaxing with your families, and ‘recharging your batteries’ after what has been a very challenging year.  We look forward to 2021, and count ourselves very fortunate to be living in Vietnam where we have been able to enjoy a full term of learning, and been able to return to school this week with some exciting events on the horizon.

During the holidays, we have been able to continue to develop our facilities; the main areas being creating a new staged seating area in the main playground at the front of the school, replacing the floor in the swimming pool to make it safer for the children and installing retractable shading in the F1 outdoor area.

F1 1

The shading was only part of the refurbishment in the F1 area.  In addition, the floor was resurfaced, and the space was opened up by removing some of the fixtures.  Ms Juliette, our F1 Leader, explains more in this post:

New F1 Outdoor Area

Parent Teacher Student Conferences (PTSCs)

On Wednesday and Thursday next week, we will be holding our January PTSCs. These provide a valuable opportunity to discuss the points raised on your child’s December report, and for you to ask questions and raise concerns with your child’s teacher.   Communication between school and home is essential to enable children to make the best progress, so we look forward to welcoming all of you next week.
In addition to speaking to your child’s class teacher, there will also be an opportunity to speak to teachers of Vietnamese and English as an Additional Language.  If you have not received an email with details for signing up on our “Parents Evening System’, please contact Ms Van in the office (

This term you will have completed an online Health and Travel Declaration form for your child. If you have travelled somewhere different or have another family member attending, a paper form will need to be completed on arrival at school.  There will also be temperature checks and hand sanitisation for all visitors on Wednesday and Thursday.

Parent Satisfaction Survey: What do you think about BIS?

We are constantly looking for ways to improve our school and your feedback is vital to this process. Our annual parent satisfaction survey helps us better understand how we are performing in key areas, including what we are doing well and any opportunities for improvement, and we use these results to inform our strategy. Therefore, the more parents we hear from, the more confident we can be that our action plans respond to your views and allows us to continue providing the best possible educational experience for your child.

The 2020-21 Parent Satisfaction Survey is now live and will remain open until Friday 31st January 2021.

We are once again aiming for a good response rate and need your help to do so. Please follow the link that has been emailed to you. If you can not find the link please email the office (

BIS HCMC School Photos in January 2021

Our annual school photography sessions for each campus will take place over the next few weeks.  Further details for the EY&I Campus will be sent to you next week, and please look out for the day of your child’s class photo on Seesaw. Please can we ask for your support in ensuring that all children wear the correct uniform, including footwear for the photographs and indeed every day when they come to school.

We are happy to advise that we will be partnering with Picture Day, a Hanoi based photography company, this year for school photos.  To find out more about Picture Day please follow the link here.

The Picture Day team will visiting each campus on the following dates.

-          Junior Campus – 11-15/01/2021

-          Early Years & Infant Campus – 18-22/01/2021

-          Secondary Campus – 25-29/01/2021

Episode 5 of the NAE podcast ‘A Little Bit of Genius’.

To Zahra Abdalla ‘ food is just a medium to able to talk about so many other issues, but in subtle ways’.  In Episode 5 of A Little Bit of Genius, IB students Isabella and Ghida, from College du Leman in Switzerland, find out more from Zahra about life and food.


Dates for Your Diary...

11/01/21                             Parent Teacher Student Conference (PTSC) Sign-up closes

13/01/21                              CCA Sign-up closes

13/01/21                               PTSCs 3.10pm until 6.00pm

14/01/21                               PTSCs 3.10pm until 6.00pm

25/01/21 - 29/01/21          International Week

1/02/21- 5/02/21                Tet Celebrations


Health and Safety

This term we will be having our external audit to assess our campus. Your child’s safety is our top priority. If you have any concerns please speak to or email Ms Sarah.

More information can be found in our Parent Handbook.

Water Safety

Water Safety

According to Professor Nguyễn Trường Sơn, Vietnam’s deputy minister of health, “Drowning is the leading cause of death for those under the age of 19, killing more than 3,000 children and adolescents annually,” We want our children at BIS to be confident and have the skills to save themselves should they into trouble in water.  Ms Emily, our Head of Aquatics explains more:

Water Safety - Term 2 (2020-21)


If for any reason your child is absent from school, we ask for you to inform the class teacher and email reception You can also inform the receptionists via telephone from 7:30am on the morning of absence.  If your child usually takes the school bus, we would also ask for you to also inform Ms Trang, our bus manager, via email at 

When calling reception please use the telephone number: 

•            Early Years and Infants (EY&I) – 028 3636 0055


bus tour

At the orientation for new families on Tuesday, Ms Dee and I spoke once again about the importance of the BIS community.  Education is not something that happens at school; children are learning all the time.  Of course, they learn a great deal in class, but they also develop their character and attitudes from the examples and experiences they have at home. 

We also spoke about the challenges of raising children, and we as parents need to support one another.  If you joined BIS in August 2020 or this week, I would encourage you to join the PTG Bus Tour next week.  It provides a great opportunity to get to know our local area and to meet other parents who can help ensure that you get the most out of being part of our wonderful community.

The bus tour next week, for families new to BIS, is just the first of the exciting events that the PTG are planning for Term 2.  We look forward to seeing our community coming together to support these events.  You can find out more about how you can get involved in this weeks’ PTG update:

Primary PTG Update: 08/01/2021

For more information about the PTG, to connect with us personally, or if you would like to  support as a volunteer, please email us directly on

Thank you for your continued support! 

Primary PTG Coordinators

And Finally…

A reminder that sign up for Term 2 and 3 clubs closes on Wednesday 13th January at 12 noon.  Please look through the choices with your children over the weekend and ensure you sign up before then.  An email was sent to all families about clubs and how to access the signup system on Tuesday 5th January 2021.