Head of School Update, May 6: HCMC Announces Move to Virtual School

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    Dear SSIS Parents,

    This evening, the People’s Committee of HCMC issued directive 1415/UBND-VX, instructing all schools in Ho Chi Minh City to transition to online learning effective May 10 until further notice. 

    For our Elementary and Middle School students, this means that their Virtual School online schedule will begin Tuesday, May 11. As per the SSIS Virtual School Guide, there will be one full day for transitioning for students and teachers (Monday, May 10).

    High School Students 

    According to the directive, certain exceptions are being made for “students in grade 9 and grade 12, ensuring the quality of the final examination and national examination of year 2021, according to the school’s policy…” As we know that this refers to local schools, it is not clear how this will impact international school curriculums. We are conferring with DOET and the other heads at international schools in the city to provide you with more clarity tomorrow.

    What we do know with certainty, is that schools will be allowed to organize for students to sit the international examinations (IB and AP) on-site at SSIS (SSIS AP Exam Schedule and SSIS IB Exam Schedule). Students will still sit exams at SSIS on Monday, May 10 even though this is set to be a transition to virtual learning day. The SAT exam will continue as planned on Saturday, May 8. This is such a relief for our exam students and their teachers, who have worked so hard to get to this point. 

    As stated above, we will provide further information tomorrow on what the directive 1415/UBND-VX means for all other high school students. 

    What to Expect

    Monday, May 10, will be a transition day. Students should prepare their virtual learning environments at home and complete any outstanding assignments. Teachers will be preparing their classrooms and lessons for Virtual School. 

    The SSIS Virtual School Guide, mentioned above, outlines divisional guidelines, roles, and responsibilities for how your child’s learning will continue from home. 

    In addition, you can expect to receive detailed information from your child’s divisional principal and teachers that explains the day-to-day expectations. 

    Based on the feedback from our community on our most recent session of Virtual School in February, we are confident that our students will finish the school year strong. However, we understand and share the disappointment of not finishing up the school year on campus with all that it entails.

    Our divisions are already hard at work determining how to adapt year-end celebrations and recognitions to ensure that students will have a meaningful last month in school. 

    We appreciate the speed and efficiency of the Vietnamese government to keep our communities safe. And we appreciate how privileged we’ve been to spend nearly the entire school year on campus, as so many others around the world have struggled. 

    We are committed to ensuring that your child receives an exceptional learning experience regardless of the platform. If at any time you are worried about your child’s academic progress or social-emotional well-being during this time, I urge you to reach out to any of our support channels, your child’s divisional principal, counselor, and teachers. 

    And, as always, please do not hesitate to contact me should you have any questions or concerns.

    All best wishes,

    Dr. Catriona Moran

    Head of School