On 13 October 2018, Merchiston International School (MIS) held its’ Official Opening Ceremony. MIS, located in Longhua district, is the first British boarding international school in Shenzhen. This big event attracted almost 1000 visitors, comprised of distinguished guests who have travelled far and wide: The Lord Provost of Edinburgh – the Right Honorable Frank Ross, Director of Longhua district Education Bureau — Mr Wang Yuxi, Deputy Consul-General of Guangzhou British Consulate – Mr Andrew Ould; the Board members of Merchiston Edinburgh, as well as all many Shenzhen citizens.
Merchiston International School (MIS) in Shenzhen is the first overseas campus of Merchiston Castle School (MCS), a top-ranked independent school located inEdinburgh, Scotland, UK with a glorious history of over 185 years. MIS is also the first international school in Shenzhen providing an authentic British education and boarding system. Located in the Longhua District in the north of Shenzhen city, MIS occupies a ground space of 20,000 square metres providing a building area of 50,000 square metres, which can accommodate 1,200 students with a maximum class size of 22. The school opened its doors to boys and girls aged 5-18 (Years 1 to 10 and 12) in August 2018. English is the primary language of instruction in MIS. Students from Years 1 to 9 study the English National Curriculum, with additional access to Mandarin (Putonghua) language learning as part of the core curriculum. Students from Years 10 to 13 study for IGCSE (International General Certificate of Secondary Education) examinations and GCE (General Certificate of Education) A Level examinations. With over 50 teachers who are all highly qualified – all with teacher qualifications and experience, many with a Masters ‘degree and PhD, – with over 80% coming from the UK. MIS has attracted extensive attention from both public and media since announcing the opening in November last year. In May 2018, we were honoured to host The Lord Provost of Edinburgh and his team from Scotland. The BBC filmed a documentary at MIS which will be aired in October in the UK. During the Opening Ceremony, The Lord Provost of Edinburgh unveiled the plague for MIS in person. The Right Honorable Frank Ross mentioned that MIS was born from the strengths of culture and education of both Shenzhen and Edinburgh. In his speech he said “it is clear for all to see that this campus represents an equal commitment to work across civic society to foster similar endeavours. However, above all else, the building represents a statement of confidence, in a City which has substantial ambitions in trade, science, innovation, sustainable economic growth and in establishing international links, which is even now punching well above its weight here at Merchiston International School, these leaders will be moulded to provide confident, competent, respectful and inclusive leadership both in their chosen fields and in the location that they choose to live, either at home or abroad. This represents a substantial and continuing legacy from time at this school and one that I hope will match the 185 years of operation of the original school in Edinburgh.”.
The Director of Longhua Education Bureau – Mr Wang Yuxi also expressed his praise of MIS, “the quality of teaching staff is superb with outstanding foreign teachers; the studying environment for students is comfortable and creative. I firmly believe that this aspirational teaching team led by Mr Lynn will surely create an international education platform for our students to grow and develop. For this vision, the Education Bureau will try our best to support this wonderful school, we will offer our help when needed. We hope in the future, MIS will have stable development whilst growing according to the laws and regulations set by the Shenzhen Education Bureau, and I sincerely wish that MIS will become the education beacon in this region!”
MIS Official Opening Ceremony is an amazing event, which showed the beauties of both Chinese culture and British culture with wonderful tradition characterised performances: bagpipes performance, choirs singing by students from MIS and MCS (Scottish pieces and Chinese p
ieces), Merchiston School Anthem “Ready Ay Ready”. The event was finished by a Traditional Chinese lion dance show, then following Chinese tradition, The Lord Provost Frank Ross, Mr Wang Yuxi, as well as the Board members of MIS – Mr Vincent Chen and Mr Jianjun Lyu painted the Lion’s eyes.
The guests were led to the outdoor sports field, so that they could enjoy various entertainment activities planned by MIS. These activities also showed the different cultural characteristics of both China and UK. MIS has declared 13 October as Founders Day and will also present a grand performance full of Chinese and British culture for Shenzhen citizens every year.