Dear Families and Friends of BISU,
I hope that this finds you all safe and well.
As we approach the last day of the academic year, none of us last August could have foreseen what was to come. We are bringing this year to a conclusion in a very different manner to how it began. Throughout it all our school community has been amazing and a huge ‘shout out’ to you all. Our students have worked in the most unenviable situation and parents and carers have made great efforts to support the children – often having to take on the role of ‘Assistant Teacher’ and acquire new skills and knowledge to fulfil this position. The strength, positive spirit and resilience that the BISU community has collectively demonstrated during this academic year is truly impressive. A massive ‘Thank you’ and ‘Well done’.
I would also like to pay tribute to the BISU staff team. In addition to their professional duties I was immensely proud to be part of a team that made certain they were available at short notice should lockdown have been lifted and the school allowed to reopen. For our foreign teachers and many local staff that meant remaining in Kyiv or Dnipro instead of returning home. In addition, many staff from our Administration and Academic teams continued working throughout lockdown, forgoing weekends and holidays to serve the needs of our community. Many of you have sent messages recognising these efforts and your comments are greatly appreciated.
We cannot, and never should, ignore the terrible impact that this global event has had on everyone on the planet. I would ask you to take a moment in your busy daily lives to remember those who were not spared or who have lost loved ones. Those of us here who are here now, and will eventually see the inevitable end to this threat, are the fortunate ones despite all we have had to endure.
When we take time to be reflective we can recognise how much has been achieved and learnt this year, despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Learning and teaching has continued online throughout, our IBDP and IGCSE results are predicted to be our best and our Ukrainian programme results are equally impressive. This has been due to the way our students, parents and staff have adapted, responded and worked together in a manner that has never been asked before. This ability to collaborate in the face of such adversity is a great sign of what BISU will achieve in the coming years and bodes very well for the future. As countries around the world take small, cautious steps to ease and eventually end lockdown, BISU has been pro-actively planning for September and beyond. Whether the authorities direct schools to open, remain closed or take an intermediary approach we are ready to support learning whilst ensuring everyone remains safe and healthy. In addition to the skills developed in the last months, key staff have taken part in specialist workshops focusing on remote (online) and blended learning to guarantee whether students are in school or elsewhere, they can engage successfully and have access to high quality lessons. We will continue with the arrangement of new initiatives which include having a UK based University Guidance Counsellor, a revised Primary curriculum to further mirror the UK’s best schools, plans for a more extensive 6th form programme and continued investment in facilities and infrastructure.
On behalf of everyone at The British International School Ukraine please accept my sincere best wishes and hopes that you and all your loved ones remain healthy and in good spirits. Please try to find an opportunity to have some rest this summer and enjoy a well-deserved holiday.
I very much look forward to seeing you in September and to continuing to work together in partnership.
My kindest regards,
David Cole (Principal)