Thursday, 18 April 2013

Inspected, Approved and Rated as ‘Outstanding’ by the British Government

Parents will remember that from 11 – 13 March 2013 the school received its first British Schools Overseas (BSO) Inspection. The British government operates this inspection scheme in order to inform and reassure parents about the quality of education offered by British schools around the world. During the inspection the quality of education at BIS was measured against the standards that apply to independent schools in Britain.   

I am now delighted to announce that we have received the BSO Inspection Report which awards us the highest possible overall grade - a Grade 1 - across the three campuses of the school.

The overall effectiveness of the school is described as:

‘BIS is an excellent school. It provides a very high quality of education and care for its students.
The quality of learning, teaching and leadership is outstanding. The students, parents and staff
are passionate about the school.’
A full copy of the report is available for parents to download from the school website and will also be published in the near future on the British Government Department for Education (DfE) website

We have believed for some time that we compare very favourably with the best independent schools in Britain and now we have external verification that this is true. It is now official that we are the first school, and currently the only school, in Vietnam to be inspected and approved by the British Government and one of only a small number of schools around the world to be awarded an overall Grade 1 rating.

For the parents of the school this award provides further confirmation that their children are receiving a high quality education from a caring and skilled team of educational professionals. I would like to congratulate all of my colleagues at school for their individual contributions to achieving this award and thank them for their continued dedication and commitment. The whole school community can take great pride in yet another formal recognition for the school.

Shaun Williams
CEO & Principal


From The Head Teacher

Welcome to the start of Term 3, 2012-13. 

Having welcomed and congratulated our new Head Students in the last edition of BISbuzz, this week we are privileged to publish a contribution from our Deputy Head Girl, Rosie Nguyen, about the influence of Facebook on teenagers.  This is the latest in a series of articles focussing on digital citizenship and on-line safety.  In the introduction to Rosie’s thoughtful article, Mr. Ben Turner, Learning Technologies Integrator, draws attention to some of the other work being done by our students in this area.  He includes a link to our own student-led digital citizenship website, “Growing up Digital”.  I include the link here also, as it provides important resources for all involved in bringing up teenagers to be responsible on-line:


International Baccalaureate News


King’s College London

King’s College London has reinforced its position on the IB Diploma at a recent meeting at the university.  The College has reduced the overall points score requirement for admission, in recognition of the rigorous nature of the IB Diploma and the quality of students who follow the IB Diploma.

At the meeting, Professor Sir Rick Trainor, Principal of King’s said: ‘King’s welcomes the great sense of energy, determination and diversity that IB students bring to the College, and how well they adapt to an academically rigorous study environment and university life. We believe this is in part thanks to the broad nature of the IB, which complements King’s range of single honours and multidisciplinary degree programmes. 

King’s decision was welcomed by many of the teachers at the event including Dr Anthony Seldon, Master of Wellington College, who commented: ‘As one of many cutting-edge schools deeply committed to the International Baccalaureate, we warmly welcome King’s move as we have been concerned about the fairness and comparability of offers in recent years. International Baccalaureate students acquire intellectual breadth and depth, an ability to work and think independently, and analytical capacity which means they flourish on single as well as interdisciplinary degree programmes.’

King’s College states that, “King’s continues to value the structure of the IB and all of its integral elements, but wishes to ensure that there is an appropriate level of flexibility. Under the new offer scheme, the highest overall point score that will be required is 35 points (including the core).


IB Asia Pacific

Congratulations to Miss Mary Morrison, Assistant Head Teacher, and Mr. Ben Turner, Learning Technologies Integrator, on their recent involvement in the IB Asia Pacific Annual Conference.  Our two teachers travelled to Kuala Lumpur to present a workshop on how we at BIS are integrating the IB Learner Profile in our performance management and middle leadership development programmes for teachers.

The IBAP Conference is attended by IB educators from the whole Asia Pacific region, from the USA to India and some from the Middle East.  Our school presence at the conference reinforced our position as a key innovator in the IB professional community.


Richard Dyer
Head Teacher


Digital Citizenship and Cyber Safety

In the second instalment of our articles on online engagement, Rosie Nguyen explores Facebook’s influence on teenagers. Rosie identifies some of the benefits, risks and considerations students and indeed any Facebook users should be aware of. Although this article is written with Facebook in mind some of the themes identified are applicable to a number of social media sites such as Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram.

Further information for Parents on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Skype are available on our  “Growing up Digital” site on the parents page (see the QR code below).







Facebook’s influence on teenagers

By Rosie Nguyen, Deputy Head Girl

Facebook is probably the main social networking site used by children and adults alike. The dawn of the technological era has changed the face of the world and in today’s day and age there exists an online platform for everything from political disputes to groups condemning the presence of raisins in trail mix.

But what does this mean for us? Well, let’s take a closer look.

Social networking and children
The average age of children who join Facebook? 12. Given that Facebook is only supposed to allow users over the age of 13 to join, this is a somewhat alarming factoid. Facebook does have its merits: for example, it makes it easier to communicate with friends and family, especially if they happen to live far away. Studies have also shown that teenagers who use Facebook have a greater capacity for “virtual empathy” and display more compassion in their everyday lives, and that the site can positively impact self-esteem through the mode of cementing one’s personality and increasing self-awareness.
Facebook is a double-edged sword, however. It probably comes as no surprise that there exists a very real danger of children becoming too dependent on the site, hindering their ability to socialise properly with others and potentially negatively impacting their academic performance. Facebook can also foster narcissism in teenagers because it can turn into a public competition of whose photo gets more likes or who has more friends.

Another issue regarding Facebook is the fact that it gives every single user a permanent virtual tattoo. Once a photo of you is out there in cyberspace, that’s it. You can untag yourself, but the photo remains. If you post a thoughtless comment or status, you can delete it – websites are routinely archived for a variety of reasons, making it very difficult to completely eradicate anything you may regret. It is becoming increasingly crucial for Facebook users to monitor the information that’s posted about and from, them, because it’s just becoming far too easy to be cast in an unflattering (even if inaccurate) light because of a single mistake.
Perhaps one of the biggest concerns about Facebook is its privacy – or lack thereof. We constantly forget that any of the millions of random Internet users can find our profiles, and I’m sure there are a lot of us that have received friend requests from complete strangers. There are already horror stories out there, but don’t get complacent; after all, nobody thinks it could happen to them or someone they know – until it does. And by then it’s too late.

Facebook is an amazing tool, but if you want to experience all of its benefits and none of its drawbacks, be smart. Be careful which pictures and posts you make. Think before you press enter.



Several children at AP2 have been diagnosed with head lice.  Please read the information below and check if your children are affected

What is a Head louse?

Head lice are tiny insects that live on the skin covering the top of your head. Lice can be spread by close contact with other people.  Head lice may also be found in eyebrows and eyelashes.

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

Head lice infect hair on the head. Tiny eggs on the hair look like flakes of dandruff. However, instead of flaking off the scalp, they stay put.

Head lice can live up to 30 days on a human. Their eggs can live for more than 2 weeks.

Head lice spread easily, particularly among school children.

You can get head lice if you:

· Come in close contact with a person who has lice
· Touch the clothing or bedding of someone who has lice
· Share hats, towels, brushes, or combs of someone who has had lice

Having head lice does NOT mean the person has poor hygiene or low social status.

Having head lice causes intense itching, but does not lead to serious medical problems. Unlike body lice, head lice never carry or spread diseases.


Symptoms of head lice include:

· Intense itching of the scalp
· Small, red bumps on the scalp, neck, and shoulders (bumps may become crusty and ooze)
· Tiny white specks (eggs, or nits) on the bottom of each hair that is hard to get off

Lice on scalp and clothing may be difficult to see, unless there are a lot of them.


Lotions and shampoos

· To use the medicine shampoo, first rinse and dry the hair.
· Then apply the medicine to the hair and scalp.
· After 10 minutes, rinse it off.
· Check for lice and nits again in 8 to 12 hours. If the lice seem active, talk to your health care provider before treating again.

An important part of treatment is removing the eggs (nits). Certain products make the nits easier to remove. Some dishwashing detergents can help dissolve the "glue" that makes the nits stick to the hair shaft.

· You can remove the eggs with a nit comb. Before doing this, rub olive oil in the hair or run the metal comb through beeswax. This helps make the nits easier to remove.
· Metal combs with very fine teeth are stronger and more effective than plastic nit combs.
· Removing eggs may prevent the lice from returning if the medication fails to kill every one of them.
· Treat children and adults with lice promptly and thoroughly.
· Wash all clothes and bed linens in hot water with detergent. This also helps prevent head lice from spreading to others during the short period when head lice can survive off the human body.
· Repeat combing for nits in 7 - 10 days.


Never share hair brushes, combs, hair pieces, hats, bedding, towels, or clothing with someone who has head lice.


Nurse Love


Workshop ‘Leaders of the Future’


Professor John A. Spinks - Senior Advisor to the Vice-Chancellor


Saturday, 30 March 2013

Windsor Plaza Hotel
Ho Chi Minh City


0900 Welcome to Guests and Journalists

0915 Workshop ‘Creative Thinking for Leaders of the Future’

7th Floor, Jade Ballroom 2-3

1115 Light Refreshments

1200 Buffet Lunch

Fifteen ambitious and creative Year 12 “Leaders of the Future” spent the first day of their holiday attending a workshop in creative thinking, facilitated by Professor John Spinks of Hong Kong University.  The 15, accompanied by Mr. Richard Dyer, Ms. Lauren Binnington and Ms. Lisa Smith, were put through their paces in a series of exercises designed to uncover creative inclinations and reveal the subtle yet important distinctions between fluency, flexibility and originality in sifting creative ideas.

A sumptuous buffet lunch was provided to aid the creativity.


Guys and Dolls

Pardon me? You...want to know about Guys and Dolls? Well, it happened to me kind of dream, and oh.. how fortunate was I to be living that dream twice a week for months, fiddling with a play filled with romantic love stories and of course, everyone's favourite, illegal gambling! And what a marvellous dream it was, too, to be up on that stage for three nights straight with the dazzling lights shining down on me, an eager and receptive audience glaring intimidatingly at me, and a brilliant cast from actors, musicians to the stage crew, the technicians, and of course, the wonderful teachers all there to make that dream a flawless reality. 

But.. I would be lying to myself if I say that it has always been perfect or flawless, because there were too many occasions where we were all convinced that this dream would become a nightmare, and counting the number of times Ms Sargent threatened to kill us is virtually impossible! In the end, however, we managed to pull through with the encouragement from our wonderful directors and delivered three amazing show nights. But what's even more important is that on our strenuous march towards the show nights, we formed bonds and friendships that will never be forgotten, and, well, that's the best part of it all! 

Next year's production? Well, I suppose I'd leave that to chance. And...chemistry.

Huy Do Year 11


It is difficult to describe how hard the students worked to create ‘Guys and Dolls’ and how proud we all are of them for such an amazing performance. Before Easter the cast gave three evenings of music, love, laughs and tension to large and appreciative audiences. They not only delivered the storyline and songs of the show but made us fall in love with their characters, sympathise with their troubles and celebrate their successes.

It is always wonderful to see students having the confidence to perform and the cast of Guys and Dolls proved that with hard work and passion you really can create something wonderful.


Cat Sargent
Head of Drama