Head of School Letter: Welcome to the 2021 – 2022 School Year

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    Dear SSIS Parents,

    I am delighted to welcome you to the new school year 2021-2022! Tomorrow, for the first time in our 24 year history, SSIS Dragons will be starting the school year virtually. Our students, who this year stem from Vietnam, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Australia, Turkey, Ukraine, Dominican Republic, Kenya, Philippines, Singapore, China, Taiwan, Pakistan, Bulgaria, Russia, and the USA, are indeed “global citizens.” Our world-class faculty and staff are committed to ensuring that each and every one of them develops intellectually and personally and realizes their potential.

    Although we understand that starting the year virtually is not the ideal situation and is not without its challenges, this community has overcome challenges in the past, and I’m confident that we will do it again together.

    This week, as your children return to learning, they will engage with teachers and classmates. They will be sharing stories and smiles, hopes, and dreams. These connections are essential for their mental wellbeing and foundational to their learning. And now, as much as ever, the routines and certainty of school will help your children flourish.

    The thought of supporting your child in Virtual School may be daunting. We know that this is a stressful time. Some of you are worried about businesses, some face economic hardship, and most have concerns about health and safety. We understand. And, we will continue to work with you on ways to support your learner.

    We hope that the additional resources and support on our Week of Welcome page have been helpful complements to the information you received from your child’s division. Rest assured that we will continue to refine our Virtual School program based on student learning, assessments, observations, and feedback from you and your children.

    Earlier today, I invited all parents to attend an optional parent meeting tonight at 6:30 pm (see email). The purpose of this meeting is to address any questions that remain unanswered after last week’s Virtual School Information Session. Please submit your questions or feedback here before 4 pm in this survey.

    For the duration of Virtual School, I will continue to host a weekly Zoom forum so that you may share your feedback and recommendations with me directly. We will provide more details about these meetings later this week.

    As we start this school year, it is only natural that we all think about the day that we can welcome students on campus. That day will come! And we can’t wait to see their joyous faces when they greet their friends and teachers in person. Ho Chi Minh City is taking every possible measure to curb the current COVID outbreak and vaccinate its population, so we are hopeful that that day will come soon.

    But until then, learning must and will go on. Our young learners must learn social skills and speaking and listening skills. Our primary learners must develop strong literacy, numeracy, and inquiry skills and master the foundation for all future learning. Our middle school students must explore the core classes and elective options that allow them to make course decisions in high school. And, our high school students must pursue a program of studies that sets them up for success in college and beyond and allows them to realize their potential. There is not a minute to waste. And tomorrow, we kick it all off.

    I look forward to welcoming our SSIS Dragon community and sensing the Dragon pride alive and well as we come together to begin another year on our students’ journey to purposeful lives as global citizens.

    All good wishes,

    Dr. Catriona Moran
    Head of School