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A Week in the life of DBIS

Head of School

DBIS Acta Non Verba

Some schools have a motto, often in Latin that encapsulates their values and priorities and which resonate in the minds of their community. I have often thought that we should try and produce a motto of our own at DBIS for the same purpose. Many possible mottos spring to mind with “deeds not words” as a current favourite of mine. “Deeds not words” or “acta non verba” would indeed encapsulate many of the school’s events this and last week. For example, I was particularly pleased for and impressed by the 40 or more Secondary students and staff who completed their final Award for Young People (AYP) expedition last weekend. I wanted to congratulate Year 10 and 11 for their efforts and thank Mr. Darryl Hood for introducing AYP to the school so successfully. Equally, the students, staff and parents contributing to this weekend’s ISTA Drama Festival at DBIS are worthy of significant thanks and praise. The weekend promises to be an excellent advert for the creative talents of our students, and I know all those participating will be inspired by the varied range of workshops. I am also very pleased that the school will be welcoming the internationally acclaimed educationalist, Bronwyn McLeod, next week. Bronwyn will be working with us with the aim of developing and enhancing opportunities for challenging all students in their learning. More information regarding Bronwyn’s visit including her parent forum on Wednesday, January 25 can be found at the following link:  Challenge Invitation
As many of you are aware, January is teacher recruitment month at DBIS. This year we received over 700 applications for the 10 teaching roles starting in August 2017. As a result, I have been involved in interviewing many excellent candidates here in Hong Kong and London. Invariably, as part of the interviewing process, candidates will ask me what makes DBIS such a special place to work. I am also often asked the same question by many people who join our Open Days and by parents seeking admission for their children to the school.  This is a favourite question of mine to answer and as is the case I am sure for most Head Teachers and Principals. My response to this question always starts by referencing our fantastic students – their energy, friendliness, happiness and commitment to the school. I also mention the strength of our unique community, the lovely environment of DB and Lantau, and of course, the outstanding learning opportunities provided by our staff both inside and outside the classroom. I am also eager to stress the importance of the school’s stated values in our day-to-day life, our eagerness to continually promote the values of care, kindness, compassion and respect for self and others.  For me, these values are at the heart of DBIS and represent more than just words. These values provide an important compass for our individual and communal behaviour.  These values underpin our approach and provide us with a set of guiding principles. They help us as educators and parents to empower our students to be capable learners and good people. It is incumbent upon us all at DBIS to model these values to the children through our deeds and not simply through our words. I challenge us all over the coming weeks to look for ways to be friendly, generous and considerate of others. DBIS -  "acta non verba"!
Best wishes for the weekend ahead.

Paul Tough
Head of School

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