Speech from Principal 2014-2015
2014-15 is another important year in our school history as this is the first school year that are operating under the Incorporated Management Committee (IMC) in which managers are not only appointed by the school sponsoring body but also elected from different stakeholders such as teachers, parents and alumni. Besides, an independent manager is also appointed by our school sponsoring body and all the managers have completed the required registration so we now operate in full IMC mode in which we can enjoy greater funding flexibilities and also greater legal responsibilities in governing the development of our school. We have full confidence that our school will develop properly under the guidance and expertise of the school managers from different walks of life.
Another big event that will take place this school year is the External School Review (ESR). It is going to take place in late April and last until early May. Reviewers from the Education Bureau will come to examine whether our school is properly developed in accordance with what has been identified in the school self-evaluation process or not. To prepare for the ESR, we need to review the suggestions made in the report of the last ESR that took place in 2007 and the major concerns that have been implemented in the current school development cycles in response to what was suggested in the last ESR report. Changes in classroom learning and teaching pedagogies have been witnessed in response to the suggestion made in the last ESR report; hence proper classroom strategies have been developed to cater for learner diversity. Implementation of more interactive learning and teaching under the concept of “Shengben Education” (生本教育) in 2009-2012 has made student activities such as pair work, group discussion and presentation a daily classroom routine. The introduction of Assessment for Learning in 2012-2015 has enabled the stating of learning objectives clearly with success criteria given. This is a standard practice for lessons in our school. Students have become more aware of what they have to learn and how they can learn the key concepts of each lesson more effectively. Teachers have become more aware of the different ways to monitor the students’ learning process so as to take care of the different learning needs of students. Use of rubrics to assist students to perform self-evaluation or peer evaluation have become a common practice in many subjects. This helps enhance students’ self-awareness in monitoring their own performance. To help cater for learner diversity, we hired a professional service to help identify the different learning styles of our junior form students and workshops were organized to train students to know how to learn better with their preferred learning styles. Form 1 and 2 students are now becoming more familiar with note-taking or note-making skills that work effectively with their preferred learning styles and this helps them organize information learnt in a way that can easily be retrieved. We believe that once students can master the proper ways to make their own notes according to their own learning needs then they can finally become a self-directed learner.
Besides advancement in learning strategies, our school has also achieved a significant result in some interschool activities such as the promotions of our school swimming team from D3 to D2 and our school soccer team from D2 to D1 after each won the overall championship in their divisions. Other school teams also achieve outstanding results in interschool competitions. All these reminded us that we should be thankful to the team moderators and coaches who have spent so much time in guiding and training our team members to become athletes who can make good use of their own talents given by our Heavenly Father.
Last but not least, our F.6 student, Cheung Chun Sing, was selected as one of the awardees for the Hong Kong Outstanding Students Award 2014-15. The award recognizes his all-round development through the all-round education being received in our school. This is the first time in our school history that a student of ours has been given such an honour but I believe that we will have many more outstanding students to come as long as we pledge to provide different learning opportunities for students to maximize their potential. It is our mission to nurture more leaders for society who have a desire to serve as it was laid down by our founders, the Maryknoll Fathers. They hoped that each student would honour the school emblem by leading a good, upright life and by being an instrument of God’s love in a world that needs truth and love. Let’s work together towards this ultimate goal so that we can witness the blooming of more student leaders who know how to uphold the school spirits for the rest of their lives.