Reconnecting with Partner Schools in Brunei

Dinner reception hosted by Principal Mdm Kho Guik Lan and staff of Chung Hwa Middle School (BSB)

On 16 Jan 2023, Ms Linda Lee, Principal of HCIS, and I travelled to Brunei to conduct scholarship selection tests and visit our long-time partner schools: Chung Hwa Middle School (CHMS) in Kuala Belait (KB); CHMS in Bandar Seri Begawan (BSB); and St. Andrew’s School.

Meeting the Deputy Principal Ms Jaime Lim and Principal Dr Chong at Chung Hwa Middle School (KB) campus

Upon touching down at the airport, we took a 1.5-hour drive to CHMS (KB) and were warmly received by Principal Dr Chong and Deputy Principal Ms Jaime Lim who had waited patiently for our arrival. Since 2016, CHMS (KB) has sent as many as 11 scholars to HCIS, and all of them graduated with stellar IBDP results. After interviewing the potential scholarship candidates and their parents, we travelled another 2 hours back to BSB and managed to check in to our hotel at about 11:30pm. It was a long but very fulfilling day.

Photo taken at Chung Hwa Middle School (BSB) campus.

The next day, we made our way to CHMS (BSB) to conduct the scholarship tests and interviews for a total of 7 shortlisted candidates from all our 3 partner schools in Brunei. The first batch of scholars from CHMS (BSB) joined HCIS in 2015, and one of them even attained the perfect score of 45 points! 8 other scholars have since joined HCIS. We are grateful to Mdm Kho Guik Lan, Principal of CHMS (BSB), for the close partnership forged between both schools.

Scholarship test in progress

We visited St Andrew’s School on day 3. A total of 6 scholars hailed from St Andrew’s over our 8 years of partnership, out of which 2 students achieved the perfect IB score of 45! We had a lively discussion with Principal Mdm Tan Lian who explained about the local educational landscape and challenges they face, over delicious local kueh and coffee.

Principal Mdm Tan Lian Lian (in blue) of St. Andrew’s School presenting a souvenir to Ms Linda Lee

Overall, it was a packed but fruitful trip as we managed to touch base with partners we have not met for a long time. It further strengthened the trust and respect we have for one another, and we are certainly looking forward to more collaborations in the future.

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