The School and its Mission
The Chinese International School (CIS), opened in 1983, is an independent, nondenominational, coeducational day school, dedicated to providing a high quality international education that encompasses both Chinese and western languages and cultures. The CIS Foundation is a charitable entity that has a Board of Governors nominated and chosen by the existing Board of Governors.
All students learn and are taught in both English and Chinese. The remainder of the curriculum is based on standard subjects taught in most western countries. Chinese culture, history and traditions are an active part of the school programme and CIS life. The Primary teaches a school-based dual-language curriculum with equal time devoted to English and Chinese. Both languages are used as medium of instruction. Under the collaborative teaching model, two teachers (one Chinese-speaking and one English-speaking) teach together in the same classroom. The Lower Secondary follows the IB Middle Years Programme (IBMYP) and the Upper Secondary follows the IB Diploma Programme (IBDP) curriculum. The School is guided by its Mission Statement:
Chinese International School is committed to the achievement of academic excellence and is characterised and enriched by a dual-language programme in Chinese and English. The Mission of Chinese International School is to inspire students to a lifelong love of learning. The School encourages intellectual curiosity and independent, critical and creative thinking which will maximise students' potential and promote the growth of the whole person. The School prepares its students to be compassionate, ethical and responsible individuals, respectful of other views, beliefs and cultures, and concerned to make a difference in the world.
Admission to CIS is open to boys and girls of all nationalities, races and creeds. Today, the School has 616 students in the Primary School (reception to Year 6); and 864 students in Secondary (Years 7 to 13). Students and teachers are representative of the international and cosmopolitan population of Hong Kong. Teachers come from Hong Kong, Great Britain, the People’s Republic of China, Australia, New Zealand, Taiwan, the United States of America and many other countries. Student backgrounds are equally diverse. The School is enriched by this variety of cultures and traditions.
In August 2013, CIS launched a one-year academic and residential programme of the highest calibre in Hangzhou, China. The first programme of its kind, CIS invites students in Year 10/Grade 9 to spend a year immersed in Chinese culture and language. Simultaneously, they pursue their English education by following the IBMYP. Hangzhou CIS is located on the campus of its partner school, Greentown Yuhua School, a leading private school in the Zhejiang province.
As a dual-language school, CIS is unusual in that neither of its two languages is predominant in the Hong Kong community where Cantonese is most commonly spoken. Students thrive and excel in this dual-language environment. In 2016, 108 students were candidates for the full IB Diploma, and their pass rate was 100%, with an average Diploma score of 38.6 (out of 45). Four CIS students achieved the maximum score of 45, and three students received 44 points. 48 students (44%) scored 40 and above. All of the 108 students scored 30 or higher. After Secondary, students go on to attend and succeed at the finest universities in the world.
CIS has always held the growth of the child as a whole person at the centre of its mission. At CIS all students and staff learn about Positive Education which seeks to build resilience by bolstering each person’s ability to cope with challenges based on an understanding of his/her signature strengths and by developing other tools and strategies.
CIS is in a very strong financial condition. It has the unique distinction in the region of having a highly successful Annual Giving Programme launched in 2009. A Team of 150 Parent Advocates helped the School to raise HK$16 million in 2015-16, with 65% parent participation.
The physical plant is state of the art and further improvements are in the works. A new 10-story building opened in August 2016 with two full Gyms, one of which is convertible to an Assembly Hall, and a Science and Technology Hub focused around an Atrium. Additional work ending in late 2018 will result in a larger Cafeteria and Library as well as extensive new learning spaces for both Primary and Secondary. The School has raised more than HK$450 million towards this estimated HK$600 million campus redevelopment project. The number of donors thus far has been equally split between parents and alumni - a remarkable achievement for a relatively young school that attests to the loyalty of the alumni base.
Chinese International School enjoys the enviable reputation of being one of the finest international schools in the region, if not the world.
The Chinese International School seeks a Head of Primary who is a proven educational leader with the ability to inspire and bring out the best in faculty, students and parents; has a track record of building engaging, collaborative and innovative learning environments and programmes; is passionate about educational research and curriculum development; demonstrates a longstanding commitment to student well-being, learning and personal growth; has a deep interest in dual-language education; and identifies strongly with the School’s multicultural mission and vision. The successful candidate will have earned an advanced degree and held one or more senior management positions. The ability to speak Mandarin is a plus, but is not a requirement. Fluency in more than one language would be an asset.
Reporting to the Headmaster, the Head of Primary School will be a member of the leadership team. Among his or her roles and responsibilities, he or she will be expected to:
- Oversee the continued excellence and continuous improvement of teaching and learning in the Primary school, with special attention to leading practices in dual-language education;
- Lead academic and non-academic activities with a whole school (K-12) perspective;
- Contribute to the recruitment, orientation, appraisal and development of a highly skilled, dedicated, collaborative and inventive Primary school faculty;
- Supervise student support services, co-curricular activities and related enrichment programmes which foster social and emotional well-being as well as intellectual and personal achievement;
- Build strong and positive relations with the CIS parent community in the service of a world-class educational experience for all Primary school students which enables each one to fulfill his or her greatest potential.
The Successful Candidate
While recognising that no single individual is likely to embody all of the below strengths and abilities in equal measure, the following characteristics of CIS’s next Head of Primary are particularly important:
- A well-organised, enterprising, team-oriented, and dynamic educational leader;
- A management style characterised by integrity, inclusiveness, transparency, approachability and support, balanced by decisiveness and accountability;
- A keen interest in understanding the educational paradigms and practices best suited to preparing students for success in an era of unprecedented change and opportunity;
- A capacity to communicate openly and effectively with students, faculty, staff and parents;
- A willingness to make a minimum of a three-year commitment to the position.
An Invitation to Apply
Chinese International School invites applications from qualified candidates excited by its mission, vision and unique opportunities. Compensation will be very competitive, appropriate for the candidate’s experience and credentials and commensurate with that offered by similar international schools regionally and worldwide.
Inquiries and questions regarding this position are strictly confidential and should be directed to:
John C. Littleford
Littleford & Associates
PO Box 14806
Baton Rouge, LA 70898
Fax: (225) 291-2806
E mail: John@JLittleford.com
Please provide the following: CV, Statement of Educational Philosophy and three references. Electronic submission is preferred. The School expects to make an appointment by the fall of 2017 for a starting date of August 1, 2018.