Bus problems

It is an immense pleasure for me to be back writing my weekly letter to you. I hope each and every one of you had an excellent summer and that those of you are new to us (and to Taipei) this year are settling in happily.

Two years ago, I shared an anecdote with you, something that my fellow heads of school and I say to each other at the start of every school year (in a fine example of false modesty) – that the most important person in a school on the first day back is the head chef in the canteen. The next time I meet up with the heads of French schools abroad, I’ll be sure to tell them that we got it wrong – the most important person at TES on the first day back is the bus manager!

If it weren’t for the buses, I could be and should be talking to you this week about the wonderful facelifts our cycle 3 primary classes received this summer – a well-planned and thought out project that gives our teachers the opportunity to put the most effective teaching and learning practices in place. The classes may look great, but there is more to them than simple aesthetics – they are designed to be veritable hives of learning.

If it weren’t for the buses, I could be and should be talking to you this week about the new teachers and assistants that have joined our team. I could be and should be thanking them for their positive attitude and enthusiasm, even though they arrived in Taipei to a whirlwind of earthquakes and typhoons, that would have put anyone off. Their first week with us has been an excellent one – a sign of great things to come.

If it weren’t for the buses, I could be and should be talking to you this week about the wonderful month of June we had and the impressive results our students obtained in the French Bac and Brevet exams. Let there be no mistake about it, they were exceptional and mean that our Terminale cohort from 2018-2019 will shortly be starting a new school year in prestigious universities in Canada, Switzerland, Belgium, France and the UK. More importantly than that, their results mean our graduates can pursue their dreams – they have made it happen!

If it weren’t for the buses, I could be and should be talking to you this week about the exciting projects we have in store for you in 2019-2020: some that you are already familiar with and some new ones that we are looking forward to sharing with you. Not to mention the opening of the Phase III building at ESC on Yangminshan, which will enhance and improve the teaching and learning conditions for our secondary students and teachers.

Finally, If it weren’t for the buses, I could be and should be talking to you this week quite simply about how happy I am to be back amongst my colleagues working for you in a French school that I continue to consider as one of the very best. It’s a school that inspires those of us who work here to do our utmost to ensure our students’ well-being and success. But I have to admit that talking about our school in grandiose terms this week seems a bit ridiculous when we can’t even manage to get your kids home on time!

I sincerely hope that you will be able to forgive us soon and that you can still manage to see that behind these difficulties there lies a wonderful little school. (Because in spite of everything, it really is wonderful here).

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