- Island School
Infobox_School | name = Island School 港島中學
imagesize = 90px
caption = Island School
established = 1967
type = Private, comprehensive, international, secondary, co-educational.
principal = flagicon|England
Mrs Michelle Hughes
faculty = not applicable
enrollment = approx. 1,200 [http://www.esf.edu.hk/schools/is.html 1]
free_label = Years
free_text = Year 7-13
[http://alumni.island.edu.hk "New" Official Alumni Website]
[http://www.ishk.org A previous Alumni Website]
location = 20 Borrett Road
Mid Levels Hong Kong
information = (852) 2524 7135
website = http://www.island.edu.hk/
Island School (Chinese: 港島中學) is a
co-educational international schoolin Hong Kong. The campus is situated in the central mid-levelsarea of Hong Kong on 20 Borrett Road.
The school was first opened in 1867 as the first school of the
Sir Issac Reid-Kay Foundation. The first campus was the Old British Military Hospital on Borrett Road.
The school was first set up in 1967 due to increasing demand for schooling for the children of expatriates living in Hong Kong. As there were no English-language schools on Hong Kong Island, the
Hong Kong governmentdecided it was necessary to have another school and Island School was formed.
When the school first opened, it adopted the Chinese name of 英童中學, literally translated as "
Secondary Schoolfor British Children".
While the school is comprehensive, recent examination results have matched those of independent and selective schools in the UK. Many students from the school have progressed into top international universities in the
United Kingdomand the United Statesas well as those in Australia, Switzerland, Singapore, Hong Kong, Continental Europeand Canada. The school, having been admitted as an IB World School in 2006, will begin providing the International Baccalaureateprogram as well as the ESFDiploma to its students in August 2007, while the class of '08 does the final year of A-Levels.
tudents and the House System
There are currently 1130 students enrolled in the Island School. They come from 38 different nationalities, although a third of the Students hold British passports. The students are separated into Year 7 to Year 13 – with Year 12 and 13 forming the lower and upper sixth form. Each Year is then separated into six houses – named after Da Vinci (Orange), Einstein (Purple),
Fleming(Red), Nansen(Light Blue), Rutherford (Green) and Wilberforce(light Yellow). Each house is led by a House master and a mistress who share the pastoral care duties. Each house is also given points for winning inter-house competitions that take place throughout the year. The winning house receives a trophy at the end of the year.
Heads of House (as of 2008-9 academic year)
Da Vinci - Mr. Kevin Lester and Ms. Jane Britton
Einstein - Mr. Paul Harries and Mrs. Sheila Dewick
Fleming - Mr. David Reeves and Mrs. Angela Worthington
Nansen - Mr. Guillermo Vezzaro and Mrs Cathryn Hopkins
Rutherford - Mr. Pak Chan and Ms. Kate Sommerville
Wilberforce - Mr. Jonathan Ishaque and Ms. Joanna Rickards
The Sixth Form
The Sixth Form include Year 12 and Year 13 and serve a vital role in school life. Unlike other students in the school, students in the sixth form are exempt from wearing uniform. The sixth form, in particular the Year 12, are expected to help organise activities for the younger students. The current Sixth Form director is Mr Daniel Trump, who oversees Sixth Form matters.
Students in Year 13 have access to a special block that serves as a common room. The common room is well equipped and holds four computers with internet access, sofas, lockers, a microwave and a fridge.
The Student Union
Student Unionhas traditionally been active in the school community. The Union is voted for by the students through a democratic election system. The election is held during November every year. Any group of students from Year 12 can run in the elections and normally a few major parties as well as "joke" parties participate.
Student Unionrun many student activities, including "Timeout" for Year 7 to Year 9 students on Friday nights. The Student Union also take part in fund-raising for the school. Most notable efforts include a sponsored walk raising over half a million Hong Kong dollars for the South Asian Tsunami Disaster by a former party - VIP (Vox In Populi) along with the school's Community Service Committee.
In recent years, the Union have complained about the state of the schools toilets and the tuck shop leading to a change in the operator of the shop and renovation of the toilets. The toilets also provided a steady source of promises from student union election candidates to either provide hand dryers and/or tissues. As far back as 1990-91, Robert Strachan and David Vrijmoed won election on a campaign platform of "soft blue flowery toilet paper for the school toilets" - a promise on which they did deliver. However in the past few years, the student unions have failed to meet most of their promises.
A student union have also succeeded in forcing the change of traditional tie-wearing uniform
The student election of 89-90 was actually won by the Pevitt-Rauscher alliance, but due to the controversial party name (IV Reich), was disallowed by minority vote.
Being a international school With such a cultural and ethnical diversity in the student body the religious beliefs of students are thus fairly varied. As a result Island School is not affiliated to a particular religious denomination; unlike many local schools in Hong Kong. This is the case for other ESF (English Schools Foundation) schools.As a result, Island School do not have a religious
School Anthem, but a School Song.
Island School offers a wide range of both sporting and non-sporting activities. Apart from inter-house sporting events such as swimming, athletics and volleyball, the school participates in most inter-school events in Hong Kong, including basketball, swimming, water polo, rugby, golf and football.
At Island School, pupils may choose to do as many activities as they want and can manage to do. The school offers hundreds of extracurricular activities that are run by teaching staff or by current students – especially those in the Sixth Form. In fact, the school expects every student to take part in some activities every year. The school has also traditionally done well in sporting competitions, winning numerous competitions and awards over the years.
Students in Island School also take part in the
Hong Kong Award for Young Peopleprogram, offering the Bronze and Silver level awards to students who successfully finish the program.
The students also work together to compile a yearbook throughout the year called the 'Islander'. This year, an extra section will be added to the yearbook to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the school.
Apart from sporting activities, the school also offers non sporting activities such as an annual inter-house quiz, debating activities and chess. One of the most popular non-sporting activity is Model United Nations – every term, students come together to act as delegates of the United Nations and debate a current world issue. Island School is a permanent member of the annual Hong Kong Model United Nations. In December 2006, a team of Island School students also travelled to the United States of America to attend Princeton Model United Nations Conference (PMUNC) 2006.
During its 40th Anniversary on the 25th of September 2007, the entire student body and teachers were gathered and made an attempt to break the Guinness World Record of the longest
contra line, with people dancing to the popular discohit Y.M.C.A. by North Americandisco group Village People; which is The School Songsimultaneously. The campus management system recorded a total of 1,048 people participating, which broke the previous record (875 people).
It was confirmed by the Guinness World Record as of the 15th of February 2008 that Island School did indeed break this record.
The school consists of seven blocks each of five to seven storeys high. The school's teaching facilities include a semi-specialist science block (block 1) that have purpose-built science laboratories. There are also dedicated Art, Computer, Music, Textiles, and Home Economics rooms mainly located in block 2. Blocks 3, 4 and 5 contain the general teaching rooms. Many teaching rooms have projector and interactive white-boards facilities. There is also a school hall in block six that covers 2 floors and provides a venue for school assemblies and school events. Block six also houses the specialised drama room and the large school library. Block 7 is a block made for examination and PTA uses, and students are restricted from entering the block without prior permission.
There is a swimming pool in the school, next to the "Green Area" – a triangular shaped sports ground, and 3 multi-purposed play areas and a sports hall. Some sports, however, are carried out elsewhere, for instance, in Happy Valley; Hong Kong Park or the Western Park.
There are currently plans for renovations and construction work is being carried out to create a block in order to keep up with growing demands from parents for places in the school for their children. A new block would mean more classrooms for teaching as well as additional computer rooms and may herald the creation of a seventh house. However, this is only one of three plans for Island School's future: one being to rebuild the whole school, and another to move the school to a different site
Ex-students of Island School have in the past kept in touch and organised alumni events through volunteers and staff. The [http://www.ishk.org ISHK] web site was a focal point of alumni activity for many years, though currently only the mailing list is maintained. In March 2005 the outgoing principal, David James, revitalised the [http://alumni.island.edu.hk Island School Alumni Association] with the backing of the school, [http://www.island.edu.hk/PTA/index-7.html Island School PTA] and the
English Schools Foundation. The [http://alumni.island.edu.hk Island School Alumni Association] is now actively working to forge a community of ex-students and work on objectives to support the alumni.
Famous ex-students include:
Fiona Sit, Cantopopsinger
Hannah Wilson, HK Olympic swimmer
Alexandra, Countess of Frederiksborg
* Lord Patten's third and youngest daughter,
Kenneth McBrideand Nicola Myers, a couple who were killed at Braemar Hillon April 20th, 1985; the school annually holds a fundraising mutfi day in memory of them
Nina Wadia, cast member of British TV comedy series Goodness Gracious Me
Harry Hill, British comedian
Alison Armitage, well-known glamour model who worked under the name Brittany York
In December 2002,
OFSTEDissued a report on the school. This is a small excerpt from the report:: '"Island School is very effective and has many outstanding qualities. It is a school to which parents want to send their children and to which students want to come. The very strong and vibrant ethos pervades everything the school does whether it is in the classroom, examinations or working with the community. The very effective leadership of the principal and senior managers motivates everyone to strive for and achieve the best. The good teaching and excellent relationships ensure that students achieve very high examination results and that they develop excellent personal skills." '
Education in Hong Kong
English Schools Foundation
* [http://www.island.edu.hk Island School]
* [http://alumni.island.edu.hk Island School Alumni Association] - The official Alumni website
* [http://www.ishk.org Island School Alumni Network] - not currently accepting new members
* [http://www.island.edu.hk/PTA/index-7.html Island School PTA]
* [http://www.esf.edu.hk English Schools Foundation]
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