2020-2021 Principal’s Post #32

Student-Led Conferences Recap

It was amazing to host parents on campus for conferences this week. The excitement and buzz in the hallways was palpable. After a year of heightened health and safety restrictions, we were grateful for the opportunity to bring our community together to celebrate the learning of our students. We hope these conferences help to further the ongoing conversation at home regarding how we can help students achieve their full potential in school. We would like to thank all of the students for their hard work preparing for the conversation, the teachers for their support of the students, and the parents for their engagement and encouragement of our students. This home-school partnership lays the foundation for our students to be able to develop into the best version of themselves.

Transportation Update

Please note that the remaining 15 legacy buses will be upgraded over the weekend. The SCIS Pudong bus fleet has now been fully upgraded to all new buses. If your child has been traveling on one of the older buses, please remind them to keep an eye out for the new bus Monday morning!

Spirit Week Starts Monday

Starting Monday, April 19th we will be celebrating Spirit Week. Next week’s activities are sponsored by our High School and Middle School Student Council. The goal is to help increase school spirit by bringing students together around a different theme each day, providing a fun shared experience for all. Please help your child remember to dress according to the themes each day (please note that Lower School will be celebrating Spirit Week as well but with different themes). Go Dragons!

Professional School Pictures (April 26)

Dear Parents, 

We are excited to inform you that Pret-a-Portrait will be visiting the school on Monday, April 26th & Tuesday, April 27th to take fun, professional pictures of the students. Pret-a-Portrait is an international school photography company who have been working within China for many years. 

On the day your child has their pictures taken they will bring home a slip which tells you how you can view their photos. Pre-register your details when you receive this slip and Pret-a-Portrait will email you the moment your pictures are ready.  Orders can be placed via their website or via WeChat with the assistance of their customer service team based in Shanghai. 

Images will be available a week or so after their visit, a 25% discount period will be available to all parents and any orders placed for physical prints will be shipped directly to your home address, digital image orders will be emailed to you.  

Should you wish to take a look, Pret-a-Portraits website is: www.pret-a-portrait.net

If you have any questions for Pret-a-Portrait at this stage you can contact them via: 

WeChat: Pret-a-Portrait

Phone: 131 2078 2068

Email: chinasupport@pret-a-portrait.net

Window Into the School Week

SCIS Badminton Tournament

We hosted an internal tournament with students and teachers participating. Students and teachers competed in a double-elimination tournament Wednesday and Friday. Given the limited opportunities to compete against other schools, this was a great opportunity for students to sharpen their skills and build community through shared experiences. A big thank you to Coach Hedderson, Bilz, and Fang!

MYP Film Students

This week MYP film students developed stop motion animation skills. The painstaking patience and required precision is evident in these classroom photos. Thank you to Ms. Whiteside for ensuring that students in the film program develop diverse film production and editing skills.

Grade 7 Science

Grade seven science students designed and built their own homemade water filters to clean a sample of contaminated water. The following photos show students building their prototypes, which they will experiment with to test how well each filter component works. Thank you, Ms. Marcos, for helping to develop our young scientists!

China Go! Trips (Continued Post From Last Week)

The following information was emailed to parents and hard copies were provided to students. Click here to download the China Go! INFORMATION PACKET

We are delighted to announce that we have received permission from the Shanghai Center for Disease Control (CDC) to proceed with our annual China GO! trips from April 28-30. Participation in these trips is an expectation for all students from grades 6-11, and is a highlight of the year at SCIS, eagerly anticipated and always remembered. At SCIS, China GO! seeks to enhance community through shared experiences that help build the bonds of friendship between classmates and solidify a foundation for positive student-teacher relationships. All expenses are included in the cost of tuition. In keeping with guidelines from the CDC, please note the following: 

  • All trips will stay within the borders of Shanghai municipality. 
    All transportation will be arranged privately by SCIS. No public transportation (planes/trains) will be used.  
  • All trips leave at 8am from SCIS on Wednesday 28 April. Students will take the buses to school that morning, bringing their health codes and forms as usual.  
  • All trips will return to SCIS before 3pm on Friday 30 April. Students will take the buses home from school as usual on Friday afternoon.  
  • All students, teachers, and guides will have their temperatures checked twice per day during the trips.  

For more questions about the details of your child’s Grade Level Trip itself, please refer to the attached documentation, or contact your child’s Advisor.  

Travel Documents and Forms 

To travel in China, all foreign nationals are required to have a current passport with a legal visa. If there has been a recent change to your child’s passport, please contact the SCIS Upper School Secretary, Jelly Ling, as soon as possible. If your child’s visa is currently being processed, the visa bureau should issue a receipt which can serve as a legal document affirming that they are holding the passport, and that the student is in China legally and free to travel. Students will need to have their original passport, legally binding receipt or travel permit with them on the trip. 

We also need your signed conduct agreement form as well as a medical release form with insurance information. Those two forms are attached(below), and are also available for download from ManageBac, and from our school website. 

Please return hard copies of the following to your child’s Advisor as soon as possible, and under no condition later than Friday 16 April

  • Conduct Agreement and Permission Form (attached)  
  • Medical Release and Personal Information Form (attached) 
  • Copies of current passport, visa page, and most recent entry stamp 


Students are free to bring mobile phones on the trip, but in order to ensure that they participate fully in every activity without distraction, they will be expected to keep them zipped up in their bags throughout the day. Every evening, at a scheduled time, all students will be expected to call their parents. Please refrain from calling or texting your child during the day, as they will not respond until the evening, and their silence may cause you undue worry.   

Students who do not have their own devices will have the opportunity to borrow from a friend to ensure that all students are able to connect with their parents every night.  

If a family emergency arises and you have an urgent need to reach your child during the day, please contact Dr. Volpe and he will facilitate the necessary communication immediately.  


Each trip will be fully documented through both pictures and shared reflections. These pictures will be collected for each grade level, and used for reflection and demonstration, for the yearbook, and many other functions after the group returns to campus. While the school administration will provide updates and a few pictures through the Principal’s blog and the Grade Level Parent rep, our expectation is that teachers are directly engaged with students throughout every activity, and should NOT spend time on editing or sharing photos, tasks which necessarily distract from full engagement with students.  

Thank you for trusting us with your children. We are confident that this will be a lasting learning experience, and they will return to you brimming with new insights into themselves and the world, and with memories to last a lifetime. Please don’t hesitate to contact your child’s Advisor with further questions about the trip. We are ready to help in any way we can.  

Warm regards, 
Frank Volpe, Ph.D.
Upper School Principal  


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