British International School Extends Reach To Hanoi
The international schools market in Vietnam remains competitive with new entrants and existing schools expanding their footprint. This can only be a good thing for parents, offering them more choice regarding the type of curricular and language system they want for their children.
Due, in part, to the spread of expatriate families in Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh City has seen the most activity in this sector in recent years. However, Hanoi is starting to attract increased investment from schools establishing themselves or opening a branch campus in the capital. Up until now, there has not been the option for parents in Hanoi to send their children to an international school which provides a British education.
The British International School, established since 1997 in Ho Chi Minh City, is due to open a new campus in Hanoi this August. It will be the first international school in Hanoi to offer the British education system. The CEO of the BIS Group and the Principal of the British International School in Ho Chi Minh City Shaun Williams believes the opening of the school in Hanoi will provide greater options and flexibility for parents.
Williams says demand from the market was a key factor in making the decision to establish BIS Hanoi. Communication from current and prospective parents, demand for an international school with a British style, and a desire for choice for parents between our international educational model and the dual language model all played a part. “Parents have been asking us for several years now when a BIS will be opening in Hanoi,” he says.
BIS Hanoi is located at purpose built campus in Long Bien District. It has an extensive library, auditorium, a theatre, indoor 25m swimming pool, a fully equipped indoor sports hall and additional outdoor playing surfaces. The school also has available specialist teaching facilities for science, music, information technology, art and drama.
BIS Hanoi Principal Anthony Rowlands says the school has been busy running information seminars for new students and their parents, to give them the opportunity to visit the campus and get an introduction to the curriculum as well as meeting the school’s staff. “We have had a positive number of applications which is very pleasing, and we are looking forward to welcoming many new students in August,” Rowlands says.
On the staffing front, 47 teachers have already been recruited for the 2014/15 academic year, the majority of whom are British educated and trained. All the teaching staff are qualified with relevant British curriculum experience.
“We recruit energetic and creative teachers with a proven track record of successfully motivating and inspiring children to make the most of their abilities in a caring and happy environment,” Rowlands says.
For the short to medium term, CEO Williams says the priority is to increase admissions to all four BIS Group schools, and support the students to achieve the best possible results in their IGCSE, IB and A Level exams so they can be accepted into top universities worldwide.
“We provide an international education in a British style, embracing the mix of nationalities and global citizenship that enhances the educational experience for our students,” he says. “The British education system and its qualifications are recognized, valued and respected around the world.”