Introduction to 2016

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Mr Ivan McLean, Head of Middle and Senior School

According to Dictionary.com, the word “welcome” means a kindly greeting or reception, as to one whose arrival gives pleasure (for example, to give someone a warm welcome). Furthermore it states that when used as a verb it means to greet the arrival of a person (guests, etc.) with pleasure or kindly courtesy.

I would not presume at this point of time to deserve the former definition for my welcome to the AISM community, rather I think the second definition is apt. I feel very fortunate indeed to have started 2016 in this wonderful school community.

There is a third version of the word ‘welcome’ that I have heard since my arrival in Kuala Lumpur, namely Selamat Datang. Whilst I have been told this means welcome, there are always implications that the warmest of welcomes is extended through the use of this phrase. It is a gesture that comes with a “fervent hope for a most pleasurable stay”.

I would therefore like to thank sincerely all of those families, students and staff who have warmly welcomed me to this school. AISM is a school with genuinely friendly and happy people - all willing to extend a kind “G’Day” to an unfamiliar face.

Thank you very much to all of those parents, students and staff members whom I have had the pleasure of meeting so far. I look forward to meeting as many of you as I can in the coming weeks/months/years!

The new staff to the school have commented on how satisfying their welcome to the AISM community has been, too. As we continue to grow and improve the school, I thank you all for your involvement in our dynamic school and wish you a satisfying year in 2016.

I would like to welcome the new Middle and Senior School staff to the AISM community: Mr Darren Bird (Head of English), Mr Simon Matheson (Head of Science and Technology), Mrs Tatiana Breger (Head of Arts), Mr Jason Brand (Head of Sport), Mr Garth Chapman (Humanities Teacher), Mr David Stagg (English Teacher), Mrs Jessica Stagg (Mathematics Teacher), and Mrs Alison Brand (Science Teacher).

All of these new members of staff bring a vast and diverse range of experiences to our school, which will undoubtedly enrich the learning journeys of our students. In the short time that they have been at AISM, the new staff have embraced the ethos of the school with enthusiasm. They have embraced the school values of respect, excellence, participation and integrity, as well as the proven methods and practice of teaching specifically designed to support the development of the whole individual in a nurturing and collaborative environment. I have every confidence that the new members of staff will continue to enhance our school community, as they share their invaluable knowledge and experience with students, staff and families alike during their tenure at AISM.

MIDDLE AND SENIOR SCHOOL STRUCTURE / COMMUNICATION

The Middle and Senior School Leadership Team consists of the following staff:
Mr Ivan McLean (Head of Middle and Senior School)
Mrs Kathryn Sutherland (Deputy Head of Middle and Senior School)
Mr James Unsworth (Years 11 and 12 Coordinator)
Ms Dara Higham (Years 9 and 10 Coordinator)
Mrs Alison Jafari (Year 8 Coordinator)
Mrs Rebekah Genet (Year 7 Coordinator)
Ms Susie Skinner (Year 6 Coordinator)
Mr Darren Bird (Head of English)
Ms Jo Cooper (Head of Mathematics)
Mr Simon Matheson (Head of Science and Technology)
Mr Baz Jafari (Head of Humanities)
Ms Liliane Heininger (Head of Modern Languages)
Mr Jason Brand (Head of Sport)
Mrs Tatiana Breger (Head of Arts)
Mr Chris Broadbent (Careers Counsellor)
Ms Kim Bradley (Co-Curricular Activities Coordinator)
Mrs Colleen Derham (Service Learning Coordinator)

Please do not hesitate to contact any member of the Middle School Leadership Team should any questions or queries arise in relation their respective areas. Working together with families, every effort will be made support students, and personalise their learning journeys at AISM.

PARENT INFORMATION SESSION

The Parent Information Session will be held on Wednesday 3 February from 4:00pm to 5:00pm. This will be held in AG08, the classroom adjacent to the Middle and Senior School office. The purpose of this session will be to provide an overview of our academic, pastoral and co-curricular programs. Daily school routines and expectations will also be presented. Once the presentation has concluded, there will be an opportunity for parents and guardians to meet and chat with members of the Middle School Leadership Team.

ACTIVITIES, EVENTS AND TRIPS

It is a very exciting time for the Year 12 students as they commence the final three terms of the Higher School Certificate (HSC). In order to help prepare students for the last leg of their secondary education journey, they will travel to Melbourne this Sunday for the Trinity College Personal Leadership Program, University of Melbourne. Throughout the program, students will engage in a range of workshops and activities designed to help develop their skills in leadership, teamwork, communication, problem solving and creative thinking. The program will also provide an opportunity for students to gain a glimpse of university life at one of the top universities in the Southern Hemisphere, and experience the culture and lifestyle of one of Australia’s most vibrant and dynamic cities.

Students in Years 6 to 11 have many exciting opportunities to look forward to also, with trips planned to exciting destinations for each year level. An information session about the Years 6 to 11 trips will take place on Tuesday 1 March. Families are encouraged to attend in order to receive a full briefing on the trip program for this year.

The Years 6 to 8 iPad Program commenced this week. The students participated in many workshops over the past few days to familiarise themselves with the use of the iPads to enhance their learning. Over the coming year, they will engage in programs to help prepare them to adapt to new ways of doing things as technologies evolve and understand how to limit  the risks to themselves and others in a digital environment. Overall, we have been extremely encouraged by the level of skill and adoption of the device by the students and next week some of our Middle and Senior School teaching staff will attend further professional development to continue to build on what is an exciting and innovative program.

The Middle and Senior School Athletics Carnival will be held on Thursday 18 February. All Years 6 to 12 students are encouraged to get involved and support their House teams. This annual event is always a very exciting and rewarding day for all involved. Parents and guardians are welcome to attend this event.