11 Dec 2020

Letter to Year 13

Dear Year 13 Students, parents and guardians

Thank you for those of you who joined us yesterday for our virtual office. It was great to answer your questions in real time. In many ways this letter is a follow up to our discussions.

Please find here a link to our current Year 13 Mock timetable, which is now on our school website.

Key dates as of 11 Dec 2020:

  • Tue 5 Jan Lesson 5: Assembly – Examination procedures
  • Wed – Fri 6/7/8 Jan: Language Acquisition Mock Orals
  • Mon 11 Jan to Tue 19 Jan: Written Mock examinations
  • From Mon 25 Jan: English IOC examinations
  • Note that we plan to hold exams on Saturday 16 Jan. Year 13 students will have Mon 18 Jan as a day in lieu and will therefore not be required in school

Written examinations are scheduled in the afternoon and early evening to allow for other year groups to have possible face to face lessons in the morning. Once these students leave campus we will be able to facilitate the examinations in line with EDB guidelines, spreading students across our campus. Further, we are also following HK government guidelines which ask for restricted travel during peak times.

I would like to remind you that Mock Examinations are held to encourage students to revise actively, to identify areas of weakness or challenge, and with their teacher’s feedback, set targets as they approach their external examinations in the summer. Mock examinations are one of many assessments that are completed throughout 18 months of study, and as such form part of an holistic predicted grade. No particular percentage is given to these results to arrive at this grade.

The IB have published a number of adaptations to assessments for May 2021. These have been actioned by each subject area from the start of this current school year, when notification was received. Please note that each subject was adjusted separately in consultation with IB teachers and importantly institutions of higher education. Therefore, while some subjects like History, for example, have had a substantial content reduction, others such as mathematics, have not. This is because some subjects teach a set of skills and concepts across content areas, while others build on skills and concepts as the course progresses. Hence it is important that students enter university courses with a minimum skills/concept set to achieve in their desired courses. Please refer to the IB website for further information about this and other news items related to the May 2021 examination series.

IB Website: https://www.ibo.org/covid-19-support/ 

However, if you have specific questions then we are here to help you. If you have a question about a specific subject then I suggest you email the subject teacher directly. If it is a more general question, then please email me.

Some points that we discussed yesterday in our virtual office session:

  • The school has scheduled the exams at this time to allow flexibility – we can move these exams if necessary to later in Jan or after CNY, without impacting on student learning outcomes
  • Students need time over the holidays to rest, relax and socialize as best as is possible with family and friends. Sleep is especially important if students are to retain skills/content/concepts in their long term memory
  • The IB has made adjustments to assessment requirements across most subjects, and continue to make adjustments as COVID conditions continue. This is good for our STC students and has already relieved pressure and resulting anxiety. This also means that a large number of subjects will finish teaching of new content/skills/concepts earlier than normally so revision time will be increased

I will be in touch in the new year with any updates.

Importantly, I wish you and your families a safe and happy holiday.

With much appreciation and gratitude

Best regards

Kellie Fagan

Vice Principal