IGBIS Newsletter, Issue 209

I hope that all of our community enjoyed some family time over the preceding week. During this time Ms Aga, Mr Govind and I attended the East Asia Regional Council of Schools Leadership Conference. This was an excellent opportunity to attend keynote sessions and workshops presented by experts in their field. One series that I attended focused on peer-on-peer abuse and how schools might prevent this taking place amongst students. Listening to the stories of others, I realised just how fortunate we are at IGBIS as peer-on-peer abuse is less frequently seen in our school compared to many others.

One of our governors was recognised for his work this week. Notable economist and Chairman of the Harvard Club, Professor Tan Sri Dr Lin See-Yan launched his latest book Trying Troubled Times Amid Trauma and Tumult with the support of the Perak ruler; Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah. Professor Lin said that although many of his ideas sprang from interactions with academics, thought leaders and capable public servants, fresh ideas came from his regular visits to hawker and street stalls in Kuala Lumpur where he heard the spontaneous street-wise messages of vendors. Their views and perspectives of the world differed from his own, yet provided much wisdom. Sultan Nazrin said that ‘In such challenging times, we are in greater need than ever of the wisdom and insight of learned and astute guides such as Tan Sri Lin’.

(Source: The Star, Thursday 7 November 2019). Click to enlarge.

The PHAD day took place yesterday (Friday, 8th Nov) regardless of the teeming rain, with inside activities substituted for those planned to take place outside on the track and field. The culmination of the event in the Theatre later that afternoon reflected the students’ enthusiasm throughout the day, from both Elementary and Secondary students alike.

Anne Fowles, Head of School

Returning to school after the holiday has been enjoyable. I have managed to move around the school and observe some great learning happening.

I was fortunate to be in the Early Years on two occasions this week. I first managed to stay clean as they were engaged in their ‘messy play’. The students were having great fun as they were completely focused on the ‘messy’ areas. Water play, painting (sometimes on the paper) and bubbles. The children were having a great time and this is a wonderful way for students to be creative and experience different sensory input.

In my second visit, the students were engaged in a variety of learning experiences. Some students were playing with different toy characters making up their own stories; some students were creating colourful shape pictures. They also had the opportunity to find their names and spell them using magnetic letters or by using leaves. This was a snapshot of the kinds of engagements our Early Years students experience. Other students were playing with transport, like fire engines, and others were painting. There was a hive of activity.

Travelling through the school I stopped off at the Monster Mash-up on level 2 in the visual arts area. This exhibition showcased work that had been created across the school both in the PYP and MYP. It was fantastic to see the creatures escaping and causing havoc. If you haven’t managed to get there yet, it is a must. A huge thank you to the Visual Arts team for inspiring our student artists.

On Friday 8th we had our Phoenix Activity Day (PHAD). This is a wonderful whole school event that encompasses many different activities from sports challenges to creative tasks that may be performing or visual arts in nature. The whole school works together in their house teams comprised of younger age students to older ones. The students interact, look after each other, appreciate and learn from one another. This year was no different and it was wonderful to see so many happy smiling faces. Unfortunately the weather was not kind to us and we had to move to our plan B (inside activities)- nevertheless, this did not diminish the enthusiasm and engagement of our students. A big thank you to the PE department and all the staff involved to make the day so successful.

Dates for your diaries.

  • Thursday 14th November: 24-minute race
  • Friday 15th November: Staff professional development day (No school for students)
  • Tuesday 26th November: PYP Maths parent workshop: PVO room 8.00 – 9.00 am
  • Wednesday 27th November: Parent workshop: Digital Citizenship- Learning with Technology PVO room 8.00 – 9.00 am
  • Friday 29th November: Season 1 Activities end: Paid activities still continue until 10th Dec.
  • Monday 2nd- Friday 6th December: Inclusive Schools Week

Simon Millward, Elementary School Principal

Dear IGBIS Community,

Our Phoenix House Activity Day was a great success today. One of the things that really stood out for me was the leadership of our eldest students, as they worked with their younger classmates and supported them throughout the day. In the time leading up to PHAD leadership was a point of discussion with our senior students and they clearly rose to the occasion and were excellent role models for everyone in the school. It was a great pleasure to see this today!

As per my email this week, we will be implementing more strict rules involving the use of technology, particularly at break and lunchtimes. We are expecting all students to have locks on their lockers from Monday, as we will be ensuring that students are meeting these expectations when we begin school next week.

Wishing everyone a wonderful and restful weekend.

Sincerely yours, 

Michael Arcidiacono, Secondary School Principal

Very early (6 am) on Monday morning (first day back after the break), a group of very excited elementary and secondary students set off for MARDI to participate in the AIMS cross country.  

We were a team of 26 students, 3 teachers and a number of parents all as one representing and cheering on The Phoenix. This year the children were challenged by an authentic cross country course complete with hills, mud, jungle, long grass and of course, the heat. 

The elementary students ran 1.5km, the middle school students 3km and the high school students 5km. Every single one of our runners tried their hardest and did their best. Running in the mud did prove an interesting but fun challenge for some.

Sophie and Alicia were placed second and third respectively in their event, which was a fantastic achievement.

This event was a chance for many of our students to put into practice what they had been working towards and training hard for during their weekly coaching sessions (6.45 am every Monday and Friday) with Ms Chotard.  Every year our number of athletes grows, we compete more fiercely and show that we are a strong team. Go The Phoenix!

Leanne Harvey, Phoenix Supporter

Each year IGBIS celebrates Inclusive Schools Week to highlight and celebrate diversity, equity and inclusion. It is celebrated during the first week of December and this year, with the great support of the PVO Inclusion Committee, we have a wonderful programme of events. 

Throughout November we are raising awareness of who IGBIS stands with and for. 

This last week we highlighted ability and the idea that no matter what your ability level, you have a place here at IGBIS. Everyone is unique, everyone has different strengths and challenges, but it’s how you use your abilities, how you encourage others to use their abilities and how you recognise the different forms of strength, that determine success. This week we encouraged each member of our community to take a risk and uncover something new about a friend, to see a difference as an opportunity and even to try something new themselves! We asked our community to wear the colour purple to show their support for the message that every level of ability is welcome here. 

Next week we will be looking at religion and the messages of tolerance that each religion has. Malaysia is already such a diverse country and in an international school, that diversity only increases. We are representing our support of religious diversity by wearing the colour pink. Next week we encourage you to learn about a different religion, find the message of tolerance and acceptance within your own beliefs and be open to considering the world from a different viewpoint. 

Lizzie Hudson and the PVO Inclusion Committee

Wednesday 13th November is International Kindness Day, and its purpose is to highlight good deeds in the community, focusing on the positive power of kindness.

Aveesha Nanayakkara, Grade 6 student, proposed that the school promote various activities to support kindness initiatives. This action has been taken up by the PVO Inclusion Committee, chaired by Ms Lizzie. We acknowledge and are grateful for the fact that the students at our school are kind and considerate to each other, and intend to use the International Kindness Day to have fun and celebrate this.

On Wednesday, students will be greeted at the main turnstiles by volunteer parents handing out Random Acts of Kindness. These contain action notes to prompt acts of kindness that we hope you will join in with. Look out for further updates.

This celebration also feeds into the Committee’s preparations for Inclusion Week 2nd to 6th December when lots more activities will take place. 

If you can be anything… Be kind!  

Tina Webster, PVO Inclusion Committee Member

The 24 Hour Race is the largest student-led movement to abolish modern-day slavery in the world. Student teams compete in endurance relay races over the course of 24 hours across the globe, to raise awareness and funds against human trafficking. Students who are interested in being involved with the movement as part of the Organizing Committee undergo a rigorous application process and are selected nearly a year before the event. As a member of the Organizing Committee, they are fully engaged in the logistics of the event itself, it’s planning, preparation and execution. Several of our own students have been and are currently actively involved with the 24 Hour Race as runners, volunteers and as Organizing Committee members. 

A fundraising support letter has been previously shared with you from our Grade 11 student Ro Xzi Ho, Operations Director for this year’s 24 Hour Race Kuala Lumpur, which will be held on 23 November 2019 at IGBIS. In efforts to raise even more awareness, especially amongst our younger students, a 24 Minute Race will occur on Thursday, 14 November 2019. The 24 Minute Race will be a mini-replica of the 24 Hour Race, in which students from Grades 1-12 will attend a short presentation at the Theatre and will proceed to the Field, where they will work in relays to run 200m at a time throughout a period of 24 minutes.

24 Minute Race: Thursday, 14 November 2019

On this day, all students are to come to school wearing House t-shirts, PE shorts, and trainers. Students are also to bring a named water bottle. During the 24 Minute Race, there will be 5 fundraising booths run by participants, whose proceeds go towards each of their 24 Hour Race teams. Parents are welcome to come to the Field around 8:30 am, watch the event, and support the teams by making purchases at the fundraising booths.

Julie Arcidiacono, Community Support and Services Coordinator

IGBIS Events

Cambridge Immerse Summer School Essay Competition

Are you interested in attending the Immerse Cambridge Summer School?

We offer a variety of summer programmes, from Architecture to Physics, and if you’re looking to showcase your academic skills then this is the essay competition for you! The Immerse Education Essay Competition offers applicants the opportunity to win a 100% scholarship to participate in an Immerse summer programme.

Details of the competition, the guidelines, the prizes and important competition dates for your diary are outlined here.

If you have questions or would like some help with your prompt, see Mr Mitchell and your relevant subject teachers!

The deadline is Monday 20th January 2020

Upcoming University Visits

Parents and students are encouraged to attend!!

WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 13 @ 12:30 (Secondary Library, 6th Floor)

University Visit: University of Queensland – AUSTRALIA

The University of Queensland is a Top 100 world-ranked university.  The University of Queensland (UQ) is one of Australia’s leading research and teaching institutions. We strive for excellence through the creation, preservation, transfer and application of knowledge.  


MONDAY NOVEMBER 18 @ 12:50 (DP Lounge, 6th Floor)

University Visit:  UNITED KINGDOM The University of Glasgow, University of Nottingham , University of Liverpool , University of Bristol, University of York , University of Essex 

University West of England, Bristol 

WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 21 @ 9:50 (Secondary Library, 6th Floor)

University Visit: Ritsumeikan University – JAPAN


MONDAY DECEMBER 9 @ 12:50 (Secondary Library, 6th Floor)

University Visit: Nagoya University, Japan

Mr Freddy Mason

Assistant Director of Marketing and Admissions


Follow the Secondary Calendar or see the College Counselling Events calendar for future visits and events.  

College Counselling Events

Kuala Lumpur Events


Four Seasons Hotel, Kuala Lumpur

30th November 2019

Join our Global Leadership Careers Workshop in the Hospitality Industry and experience hospitality, marketing and business through lectures and interactive exercises. Test your hospitality and business management skills through our interactive leadership and business exercises. You can actively participate and broaden your knowledge about Hospitality Management Careers, and have the chance to win prizes.

More information here on the event flyer.

Medicine, Veterinary & Life Sciences Pre-University International Summer School

Our Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences International Summer School programme are unique to the UK by allowing you to choose from three distinct pathways to prepare you for a career as a Doctor, Veterinarian or Scientist.


  • Medicine
  • Veterinary Medicine
  • Life Sciences

Important Dates:           

Applications: Opens on 1st of November 2019

Summer school: Monday 13th July – Saturday the 1st August 2020

Entry requirements:

The Summer School is open to international high school students in the summer before their final year at high school. Applicants must be under the age of 18 prior to the 1st of August 2020.

Full details can be found on our website:           


Interested students can register their interest here

EVERY TUESDAY AND THURSDAY U.S. University Advising: EducationUSA Advisers provide comprehensive U.S. university advising Register Here

Bill Mitchell, Grades 9-12 School Counsellor