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Mr Sean O'Neill: Weekly Update 08/01/2021

Sean O’Neill
Sean O’Neill (20 posts) Head Teacher, Secondary Campus View Profile

Dear Parents, 

I hope you are safe and well and have had an enjoyable and restful winter break.

As we enter the new year, it is a time when traditionally, we look forward with optimism and excitement to the opportunities that lie ahead. Of course , this year as we witness current events around the world, and speak to our families and friends spread across each corner of the globe, this positivity is a little harder. It seems that at this moment old certainties are being unravelled and the future looks more uncertain.  

I have had so many conversations with parents, colleagues and students over recent weeks and months where we have expressed how lucky we feel to be here, in this community, at this time - where we are able to continue to learn, work and connect in person.

And so as we begin  2021, whilst we stay connected with wider events and remain vigilant here in Vietnam, we can start this year with confidence. Confidence that our students are well placed for the next stage of their academic and personal journey with the support of you at home and our team here in school. 

In this first update of 2021, you will see we are starting the year with gusto as our younger students embark on their exciting ‘Week Without Walls” and our older students sit their Mock Examinations. Find below more details of these events and other news from the start of term.

I look forward to working together once more in the term ahead and wish you and your family a healthy and happy 2021.

Week Without Walls



As BIS teachers and parents, we value learning outside of the classroom as a way to extend students’ skills and develop character. One way in which we achieve this is through our  Week Without Walls programme. This year, Year 7 and 8 students will join the Year 9s in  the week beginning 11th January 2021, in the biggest Week Without Walls programme yet.

Each student from Years 7 to 9 will undertake a unique and bespoke programme of activities based on the Creativity, Activity, Service and Sustainability model that forms part of the IBDP Core programme for our Sixth Form Students. This will give them the opportunity to step outside of their comfort zone, to undertake new challenges, with new people and develop new skills.  From Climbing to Cooking, Dog Training to Diving, Poetry & Percussion to Precious Plastic - the week promises to be a great learning experience.

My thanks to all the teaching and support team for their creativity and enthusiasm in creating the Week Without Walls programme, and to you as parents for your continued support for this important part of our enrichment curriculum.  Look out for news and updates next week.


Mock IBDP & IGCSE Examinations 

The start of Term 2 sees our Year 11 and year 13 students sit their mock examinations:- assessments which mark an important juncture in their IB and IGCSE pathways. The word “assessment’ is derived from the Latin assidere” to “sit beside”. As our Year 11 and 13 students sit their formal mock assessments this week and next, it is so wonderful to see that as well as occupying the familiar rowed desks of the exam hall, they also  metaphorically sit beside each other in their mutual support of one another. Whether through collaborative revision or post exam chatter, it is great to see the camaraderie of a shared experience. Our students’ success is of course also down to families at home and teachers in school “sitting beside” each student as they meet these challenges. I am delighted we will be hosting a session on ‘supporting your child’s study at home’ later this month - further details below

My congratulations to all our students for their diligent preparation and exemplary approach to the exams so far. I know you will join me in wishing them luck for the week ahead. The experience of sitting the exams and most importantly the feedback received will form a great platform for success in the summer examination series. 

Headteachers Coffee Morning & Parent Workshop 


I am delighted we will be hosting the rescheduled Parent Workshop and Coffee Morning on Tuesday 19th January 8:30-10:30am. 

Join Mr Lambert, members of the teaching team and myself in the Secondary Auditorium for a Practical workshop and discussion forum. The morning will include practical activities where you can learn more about how you can support your child to study effectively at home. I  will also share a Campus Update and there will be an opportunity for a general Q&A and a chance to connect with parents and teachers

As limited spaces are available, please complete the form below to confirm your attendance. 

We look forward to welcoming you on the 19th January.

To sign up click here 

CCAs TERM 2, 2020-21


The week beginning 25th January 2021 will see the launch of the BIS Secondary Campus’ CCA (Co-Curricular Activities) programme with all non-paid clubs starting.  These will be followed after the Tet holiday with paid clubs commencing the week Monday 22nd February 2021 – all clubs, with the exception of some sporting ones, will run for a total of 8 weeks. 

We are thrilled to be able to offer over 100 different activities each week in the areas of creativity, action, service, sustainability and study support as we continue to challenge our students in different areas of their personal development.

This term we will also be introducing a few new activities to supplement the tried and tested ones normally on offer and many of these will be led by the students.  Of particular note are five Student Leadership clubs which will have senior students enriching the primary CCA programme by providing arts & craft activities to the younger BIS students on the Junior and Early Years Campuses. This is a fantastic opportunity for the students to exercise their leadership skills through mentorship, creativity, responsibility and collaboration.

We look forward to following the progress of each of these clubs and to sharing the feedback and benefits of them as expressed by our students.

School photos week for SC

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 visit 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

We will be sending an email to all secondary parents next week with full details of the Secondary Campus photo schedule.  In the meantime, if you would like to book a sibling photo session for your children, please use the booking link here.

Virtual Young Musician of the Year 2021 


Calling all of our young musicians.  You have been invited to share your passion and creativity with all of us in the NAE global community.  

Read the poster above and if you are interested, speak to your music teacher for details about how to enter.  We look forward to hearing some performances from many of our talented students.


Be involved

PTG Update - Next PTG Meeting - Tuesday 19th January


Happy New Year and welcome back, we hope that everyone enjoyed the Christmas break and you are ready and refreshed for the new term.

Our first PTG meeting for 2021will be Tuesday 19th January at 1pm.  It will take place at the Secondary Campus.  If you would like to attend, please email us at or contact the Secondary Reception.

Dates for your Diary

Monday 11th January to Friday 15th January Mock Examinations Week, Secondary Campus, Year 11 & Year 13 students

Monday 11th January to Friday 15th January Week Without Walls, Year 7, 8 and 9

Tuesday 19th January Headteacher’s Coffee Morning, 8.30am at the Secondary Campus

Tuesday 19th January PTG Meeting, 1pm at the Secondary Campus

Monday 25th to Friday 29th January Secondary Campus School Photos




My thanks to you all for completing the Health Declaration Form for your family following the school holiday. If you have yet to do so - please click here to complete


Have a wonderful weekend,

Kind regards,


Sean O’Neill


Head Teacher

Secondary Campus