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A week in the life of DBIS

Head of School

Marcel Proust, the French novelist, observed that "the real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new lands but in seeing with new eyes."

I’m writing my update for today’s newsletter from Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia as I’ve been fortunate to attend an educational conference organised by the East Asia Regional Council of Schools (EARCOS). EARCOS is an organisation of 152 member schools in East Asia and its main purpose is to promote intercultural understanding and international friendship. This is timely of course because this week the school is demonstrating its commitment to intercultural understanding in different ways. These include primary and early years children celebrating the festival of Diwali while secondary students are experiencing a range of various cultures including Thai, Philippine, Vietnamese and Chinese through participation in our Week Without Walls trips.

I think we would all agree that developing intercultural understanding should be a core aim of our very special international community school. Not only does it stimulate interest in the lives of others but crucially for me, it cultivates positive values and dispositions such as care, kindness, respect, responsibility, empathy and open-mindedness, values which are at the heart of the education we provide at DBIS. It is incumbent upon us as a school community to help our students become more rounded individuals, encouraging them to see things from multiple perspectives and helping them to make informed decisions while acquiring transferable skills that will be useful throughout their lives. Over the coming months we will be beginning a discussion involving staff, students and parents on what intercultural understanding means to us at DBIS with a view to establishing a shared definition and commitment. We will also be looking carefully at how we achieve this in all aspects of the students' education with us.

Important aspects of intercultural understanding include affecting positive social change through leadership and meaningful community participation. I’m very pleased that student leadership opportunities have developed significantly this year in all three phases of the school. I’ve also been tremendously impressed by all the students who wanted to make a positive difference to the school by taking on the significant responsibility of becoming a school council member, student ambassador, house captain or peer mediator. All of the students who volunteered and in particular to those have now been appointed are worthy of high praise. I’m confident that all our student leaders will seek to represent the school with distinction and to have a real impact on learning and the school environment.  A list of this year’s student leaders at DBIS can be found at the following link.

Best wishes for the weekend ahead.

Paul Tough
Head of School


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