An Inclusive IB World School

Above Nav Container

Hangzhou International School
Hangzhou International School

Utility Container

Button (Container)

Search Trigger (Container)

Mobile Menu Trigger (container)

Off Canvas Navigation Container

Close Trigger (container)



Upper School Newsletter December 19, 2022





December 23      End of Semester 1

December 23      Reports

January 30         Start of Semester 2

February 22          Mandarin Curriculum Night

March 28            Student Led Conferences

March 31              Mid-Term Progress Reports

April 3-5    Spring Break (no school)

  Qingming Tomb Sweeping Festival

May 1         Labor Day  (no school)

June 22                 Dragon Boat Festival (no school)

June 30                 End of Semester 2/ Semester Reports

July 1              Professional Inservice  (no school for students)



Mr. Fursey Gotuaco



"IN THE END, ITS NOT THE YEARS IN YOUR LIFE THAT COUNT.  IT'S THE LIFE IN YOUR YEARS."                                                            Abraham Lincoln


                                                               Oprah Winfrey

As we break for the holidays, we have an incredible opportunity to breathe in the moments that make life worth living.  It might be family dinner, a far away vacation, a birth, or maybe a recent success.

Over the last few weeks, several of our students received incredibly good news.  They got into the college of their choice.. One got into Emory, another got into Michigan State.  A few got into Manchester and several got into a variety of schools in Hong Kong.  One even got into The University of Pennsylvania.  All are prestigious schools and worthy of a few SCREAMS!!!  They celebrated with hugs and high fives!  One student bounded to me in the parking lot and high fived me with great delight!!!  A culmination of many years of hard work... A capstone to a high school career!  Destination reached!  But is that all there is to school?

What about those great moments on the volleyball court?  The soccer matches?  The swim meets?  The Student Council events?  The musical?  The hours creating art?  Or the goofy moments during China Trips?  

Would the destination be as sweet if the journey had not been so enjoyable?  

As we close our first semester, maybe we could take a moment to celebrate successes... both in class and on the fields of play, the playoffs or the play itself... The concerts and the contests.. the hard work, the homework, the dirty work...the work no one else wanted to do...The IAs, the IOs, and the IOUs... Some we could never pay back... 

As we end 2022, I'm sure many of us will look back in fondness at the peaks and valleys of the last 12 months... Remembering the emotional highs and lows... All of which come together to create the tapestry of our lives.

Take a moment to enjoy the moment before it passes.  Take the moment to celebrate; the moment to cherish; the moment to reflect; the moment to breathe.  Take a moment to smile, to laugh, to hug, to walk, to hike, to bike, to eat, to sing off key, to dance out of rhythm... to talk to an old friend....  Take a moment to pray.

Our destinations are ahead of us.  And when we reach the top of those mountains, we will yell, scream, and high five our way through celebrations - just as that senior high fived me in the parking lot!  But I think it's okay to enjoy a few high fives along the way, as well... To laugh... To make eye contact.. To read a book that has nothing to do with school...To enjoy a sunrise - together with loved ones... Little victories... 

Enjoy your moments.  Enjoy your journey.  Enjoy your break!!!





HIS is doing great things and being noticed!!!  Click on the button below or scan the QR code to see what they're saying about your HIS Dragons!

Article #1

I'm an image

Leading International Schools in China

I'm an image

We are thrilled to once again have HIS nominated and endorsed as one of the Leading International Schools in China by the Educational Insight Team of Newsweek Magazine.  Over the years, HIS has received numerous commendations for its outstanding programs and quality of instruction, especially for its IB Programmes, and we are so pleased to have the entire school recognized for its leading mission, facilities and commitment to international education.  



Jeffry R. Stubbs

Making HIS a benchmark for international schools



HIS Social Media.

Follow us and subscribe to our channels!


                                            Congratulations                                                                                  to the winners of the                                            GIN Club Greeting Card Competition!

All winners will receive their free pack of cards from GIN club, and can pick them up next week at Ms. Andrea’s office.

Thank you to all the participants. Please, collect your drawings, plus a chocolate, with Ms. Andrea. The winning submissions have been printed on greeting cards and will be sold at the different events at HIS. All proceeds help fund GIN club projects and charity experiences.

I'm an image

I'm an image

Hi, everyone! As we are about to approach the new year.  Our Longyin Club would like to welcome the Year of the Rabbit with our calligraphy works again this year! The members of Longyin Club look forward to sharing their original calligraphy works with you. All money raised from this student’s activity will be donated to support our current ongoing Aspiration Project.

It is better to give than to take. We hope that you will support us by purchasing our works to either decorate your place or give out as a gift. Thank you for your support and we wish you a happy and prosperous New Year in advance!

DragonNews Fall 2022 issue is out online!

Click the link:

Printed copies will be distributed to the students next week. We hope you enjoy this issue!


Hello students and parents! 

HIS is proud of our strong tradition of college counseling.  We are committed to not only giving our students the best education possible while here with us in Hangzhou but we also work to insure that they find the right fit university for life after HIS.  These decisions are not always easy. 

At HIS, we help each student find the exact right fit for their personality and their choice of study.  This year, we have decided to help our students do 'a little research'... 

To this end, we have decided to spotlight excellent schools from around the world that may not have heard of before.  Please take a moment to see if any of these schools might pique your interest.  If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our any of our College Counselors.















Analysis: Undergraduate Colleges Have Not Followed Elite Law Schools In Abandoning US News Rankings

Inside Higher Ed (12/5) explores the question: “Will the moves by leading law schools against the rankings of U.S. News & World Report spread to undergraduate institutions?”

         So far, 11 law schools, led by Yale University, announced they will stay out of the rankings. Yet those who were waiting “for a similar push by undergraduate colleges” have so far “been disappointed.” One theory put forward by former Reed College President Colin Diver is that “undergraduate schools view their constituency (mostly 16- to 18-year-old high schoolers) as more naïve, gullible, impressionable (and therefore rankings-bewitched) than law schools view their constituencies (22- to 30-year-old college graduates and often early-careerists).” As a result, “at least many of the top-tier law schools are willing to take the risk that a postboycott drop in their ranking won’t hurt them and might actually help them with their more worldly constituencies.”

        David Hawkins, chief education and policy officer at the National Association for College Admission Counseling, told Inside Higher Ed via email: “The fact that high-profile law schools are walking away from the rankings constitutes a potentially important step toward ‘unilateral disarmament,’ so to speak. Many institutions, whether law schools or undergraduate institutions, have heretofore been hesitant to step away for fear of the negative effects. Such effects include, but are not limited to, actions that U.S. News could take to ‘estimate’ data and blowback from institutional stakeholders, such as boards, state legislators, or alumni if there is a perceived drop in prestige. These law schools may have signaled to all institutions that with enough alignment at the institutional level, colleges can step away if they do not benefit from either the rankings themselves or the methods used to compile the rankings.”

We encourage students to contact one of the university counselors  with any questions about university entrance requirements. 

                          Ms. Iris Zhang

                  Mr. Fursey Gotuaco

                        Dr. Aaron Ayers

                      Dr. Monica Prieto

                     Dr. Ryan Beddows



Monday, Dec. 19, 2022 - Parent's Newsletter

Email for inquiries, and visit the Aquatics Swim Meet Calendar webpage for updated events. 

                             International    Baccalaureate                               Diploma      Programme


Terry Strombeck

TOK/DP History Teacher

Every year, IB Diploma students write an essay in response to a final exam prompt.

A few years ago, one of the TOK Essays prompts was “We know with confidence only when we know little; with knowledge doubt increases.” For some students, this prompt means that ‘the more we know, the more we don’t know.’   Of course sometimes that is true: we often realize that the more we know, the more we realize that we may not know with certainty.  However, knowing more or knowing more deeply can also help us be more certain. It seems we are confronted by a conundrum (a confusing and difficult problem or question): does knowing more bring more certainty or does it bring more uncertainty?

We can observe the effects of this conundrum during these final days of the semester.  It can be said that we long for certainty in times of confusion and that ‘knowing the answers’ can bring us certainty. Over the last five months we have all learned more…so are we more certain now than we were before? TOK-thinking encourages us to think about whether we have the kind of  knowledge that can bring us certainty. Confucius () also observed something similar when he stated “To know that we know what we know, and to know that we do not know what we do not know, that is true knowledge.”

As we break for the winter holidays, we can hope that we do know enough to bring us some certainty and a happy TOK holiday.  


I'm an image

In this edition I will briefly explore the idea of identity development and how, as parents, we influence the development of our teens’ identity.

So to begin with, what is identity?

Our identity is how we define ourselves and this consists of pre-determined family and societal factors (e.g., a brother or ethnicity) and also consists of areas such as hobbies, values, beliefs, or interests.

As parents, we have influence on how our teens develop an identity. Our role in society has a huge impact on our identity development. For example, we are parents. This is a big part of our societal role so it makes up big part of our identity. However, we also need confirmation from the outside world to confirm this about ourselves. If you enjoy cooking and people tell us we make good food, being a ‘good cook’ will make up part of our identity.

Teenagers need this confirmation as their identity is developing. Their role in society is changing as they begin to move from a child to an adult and gain more responsibility. So give your child that confirmation as they demonstrate desirable qualities and also allow them to explore their own identity.

We can influence our teens’ identity through direct and indirect means. We can actively and directly teach our teens important values and beliefs. We can instruct our teens about what is right and wrong, but we know that teens don’t always listen to everything their parents say. Humans learn more from watching and imitating. Parents can actively demonstrate the difference between right and wrong. Practice what you preach. Adolescents often actively seek interests and demonstrate values which are directly contrary to their parents as a defense mechanism to feeling restricted. However, teenagers often revert back to their parents’ behavior.

So encourage your children to explore different talents and interests. Take notice of the things they enjoy doing and reinforce and praise their talents. “Actions speak louder than words”. Teenagers will learn more about life from what they see us do than they will from our life lessons.

Also, don’t abandon your own identity. Do you know who you are as a person? Do you actively pursue interests and hobbies in a way which is in line with your values? Connecting positively and confidently to who you are as a person is the cornerstone of healthy thinking.

If you have any questions or worries about your children please contact Dr Ryan be email


Student Leadership is a priority here at HIS.  Each week, we will spotlight a student leader and give them an opportunity to tell you what they are doing in their clubs, sports, and activities.  

This sustainability moment brought to you by


I'm an image

I'm an image


Sara Freeman

Newsletter – Upper School Library

December 19th, 2022

Happy holidays, parents!  


You've heard by now that we will be doing online lessons next week to finish our semester. What does this mean for the library? Well, we will put a large bookshelf near the entrance to the campus with a handful of books from ECE, LS, and US that you can borrow. You can also check our online catalog, Oliver (, to look for and request books. To both borrow and request from the US library, please email You will need to send us your child's student ID number and a list of what you want to request. If you're going to borrow a book we already have displayed on the bookshelf outside, please email us the ID number and either a photo of the library barcode or tell us the barcode number. Students and parents are more than welcome to borrow books over the holiday! The library will also be open in a limited capacity during the vacation until January 5th.   


The Season's Readings contest will end on December 22nd. We have received many terrific entries that I will share with you once we return from vacation! We still plan on picking and announcing winners for the contest on the 23rd, pending any significant Covid-influenced changes. We encourage your child to finish the contest strong because many students have half or three-quarters finished entries that they can easily finish before next week.  

We also have a new activity that you and your children can do together over the holiday: Book Bingo! This one is due on February 10th, so you have plenty of time to tackle it while you're lazing about in Sanya or chilling out at home in Hangzhou. Please email the US library if you have any questions!  


I've read 110 books in 2022. I think I'll be able to read 3-4 more before the end of the year. Here are two of my favorites I've read this year that we have in the US library!  

"The Priory of the Orange Tree" by Samantha Shannon  

I will fondly remember 2022 as the year I discovered Samantha Shannon's work. Her "Bone Season" series is an all-time favorite I know I will revisit every few years. She writes high fantasy in a way that doesn't feel you need to don a Renaissance Faire outfit to enjoy. Unless, of course, you want to wear some frills and pluck a lyre while reading. No judgment. Like the best fantasy authors, she creates fully realized epic worlds that make you feel like you are there, even if the place doesn't exist.  

"The Priory of the Orange Tree" is a doorstopper at 800+ pages, but I savored every page. It's the feminist fantasy novel I've always wanted to read—chockfull of warriors, espionage, palace intrigue, and dragons! But, of course, you can't forget the dragons. If you are into this type of novel, I promise you will love Ead and Tané's stories.    

"They Both Die at the End" by Adam Silvera  

This dystopian romance might make you want to throw the book across the room when you finish it, but then you'll want to pick it up and hug it and its main characters, Mateo and Rufus, close to your heart forever. Set in the near future where an organization called Death-Cast calls you a little after midnight the day you are going to die. The idea is that Death-Cast gives you time to tidy up your affairs and say your goodbyes before you pass away. Morbid but practical. However, it's extra awful when they call young people like our 18-year-old main characters to tell them it's their death day. Though they'd never met before they got their call, Rufus and Mateo meet, fall in love, and make even the most hardcore cynics like myself feel inspired to live a full life and have as many fun adventures as you can along the way.  

We don't have them in the US library yet, but I also really enjoyed these books released in 2022: "Heat 2" by Michael Mann and Meg Gardiner, "Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow" by Gabrielle Zevin, "This Time Tomorrow" by Emma Straub, "Book Lovers" by Emily Henry, "Carrie Soto is Back" by Taylor Jenkins-Reid, "Remarkably Bright Creatures" by Shelby Van Pelt, "Lessons in Chemistry" by Bonnie Garmus, "The Weight of Blood" by Tiffany D. Jackson, "Thank You for Listening" by Julia Whelan, and "Anatomy: A Love Story" by Dana Schwartz. We should get most of these in the library sometime in 2023, but picking them up on your travels might be fun!  

See you in the library!  

                  UNIFORM EXPECTATIONS               

Ordering Uniforms or School Merchandise

Parents can go to following link and look at the uniform web page (

Parents can place an order with Nancy in the Dragon Shop ( by email or by calling the school directly (Tel# 8669-0045 X109) during office hours (Monday-Friday 7:45am - 11:30am and 12:30pm - 4:30pm).

Also parents may make an appointment to go to the Dragon Shop between 3:45pm – 4:30pm when the regular school day is over.

Older students may come to the Dragon Shop to select sizes and purchase uniforms if they have time before or after school during open hours.

Payment may be made through AliPay or by giving students cash.

You can choose from the following options to receive uniform orders:

1. Give items directly to students

2. Wait for pickup at the school gate

3. Deliver home 12RMB pay on delivery fee.

Middle School Uniform Guidelines 6-8

Middle Schoolers should wear tan shorts, trousers, or skirts and a navy blue polo shirt (short or long sleeved) with the HIS book logo. A navy fleece or cardigan sweater with the HIS logo or other approved outerwear such as the HIS hoodie sweatshirt can be worn in the cooler weather. All students must wear laced shoes.

High School Uniform Guidelines 9-12

High Schoolers should wear tan shorts or trousers, or plaid skirts (girls only) and a light blue Oxford cloth button down short or long sleeved short with the HIS book logo. A navy fleece or cardigan sweater with the HIS logo or other approved outerwear such as the HIS hoodie sweatshirt can be worn in the cooler weather. All students must wear laced shoes.

Students will be asked to remove outerwear (coats, hoodies, sweatshirts, etc) in lessons unless they carry the HIS logos. Students who are cold will be invited to go to the Dragon Shop to purchase acceptable HIS items. 

I'm an image

I'm an image

I'm an image

Dragon Shop Winter Merchandise - Stay warm and comfy! 

The hoodies and fleece below are available to buy at the Dragon Shop. 



With Covid 19 cases appearing locally, parents are reminded to keep an eye on Managebac and WeChat for any updates. If students' health codes are green and the child is healthy, campus remains open.

Parents are respectfully requested to keep ill students at home until they are recovered and ready to participate fully in lessons. 


While it is not required for HIS students to be vaccinated, if parents wish to get the vaccine for their children, the information below contains the most up-to-date clinic address and times: 

Students (aged 3-17) can be accompanied by a parents/guardian to No. 368 Liu He Road, Binjiang to get the vaccine. 

Address: 杭州市滨江区六合路368号海创基地南楼 滨江主舱临时接种点

Phone #: 0571-56234087

Students (aged 3-17) have to be accompanied by one of the parents/guardians, but must also take:


Police registration

Guardian’s Passport

Schedule: Monday to Sunday, 8:30am to 6:30pm

**Please note that these details can change with very little notice. You should call the clinic ahead of time to confirm that the information above is correct. **


See the updated lunch menu weekly and monthly as posted on the school website. 

Lunch Menu


HIS Mission Statement

We provide international learners with opportunities to pursue academic and personal excellence within a caring community.

Hangzhou International School
2190 Xiangbin Road, Bin Jiang District, Hangzhou 310052
Phone: +86 571 8669 0045
Email: Website: