Mission Hills International School Launch Ceremony

11 Nov 2014

Mission Hills Group ( has announced plans to build a pre-eminent world-class K-12 school in Shenzhen. Mission Hills International School will be a bi-lingual, co-educational day and boarding school for students in Pre-School (age 3) to University entrance. It is anticipated that at full capacity the school will enroll 2000 students.

Dr. Ken Chu, Chairman of Mission Hills Group shares, "The education of the next and subsequent generations is of critical importance. My siblings and I have been most blessed to have had the opportunity to study abroad at schools that have practiced some of the most innovative and nurturing pedagogical approaches available. In the process, we became fully bilingual and capable professionals within the Western and Chinese worlds who recognized the importance of remaining true to our Chinese beliefs and heritage. Having benefitted from such a positive educational pathway, we would like to make available an equally enriching educational experience for children residing in China or those considering a boarding school option within China."

Dr. Catherine Chu, Executive Director of the Mission Hills Group and Mission Hills International Education Limited announces, "The Phase 1 plan is to open a Pre-School for 3 - 5 year olds in September 2015. The Pre-School will be located in a spacious, modern and well-equipped stand-alone facility adjacent to the Mission Hills resort in Shenzhen and Mission Hills Centreville. The Phase 2 plan will see an expansion of the campus in 2016 and the opening of a state-of-the-art 62,000+ square meter purpose-built facility on the same site as the Pre-School. In September 2016, an international school program will be offered for Lower School students (Grades 1 - 6) and in September 2017, the school will begin to admit Upper School students (Grades 7 - 12)."

The prescribed curriculum in the Pre-School and Lower School will be drawn from Canadian (Ontario) and Chinese National curriculum standards. Additional content will be derived from other best practice international settings.

The curriculum is designed to help every student acquire the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to reach their full potential. The program of learning will be coherent, relevant, and age appropriate. The school's focus is on the development of the whole child from an intellectual, social, physical and creative perspective.

Inquiry, structured play, and guided and explicit instruction are used to deliver the curriculum in the Pre-School and Lower School. Traditional Chinese virtues will serve as a foundation to guide children with their learning and self-development. Inquiry is seen a critical building block in the process of learning. The inquiry approach is student centered, with the teacher as a facilitator of learning. Emphasis is placed on "how we come to know" and less on "what we know." Students are involved in the construction of knowledge through exploring, questioning, experimenting, collecting data, making predictions, testing theories and finding solutions. Active student engagement is the key. At a very young age, through this focus on inquiry-based learning, the students will begin to develop critical thinking skills. They will begin to "work smarter" and will be called upon to share or communicate their findings with their fellow students.

In the Upper School, All students will be enrolled in the International Baccalaureate's (IB) Middle Years Program (Grades 7 - 10) and Diploma Program (Grades 11 & 12). The programs are designed to help students develop the intellectual and personal skills necessary to live, learn and work in a rapidly globalizing world.

Head of School, John Jalsevac, who joins Mission Hills after serving as Principal of the highly successful Canadian International School of Hong Kong for the past 10 years, says, "Both programs are characterized by their intellectual rigor, liberal arts tradition and international flavor. The programs are exceptionally strong in the areas of key cognitive strategies including problem solving, critical thinking, analysis, research, and writing skills. The programs also encourage emotional maturity, responsibility, interpersonal skills and international mindedness."

Curriculum content under the compulsory Chinese junior high secondary education (grades 7, 8 and 9) will also be integrated into the Grade 7 - 9 program; thus enabling Chinese national students to take the Graduation Examination of Junior High School and receive a Certificate of Graduation.

The Diploma Program (Grades 11 & 12) curriculum meets or exceeds the standards for key content knowledge required by highly selective universities and is recognized by post-secondary institutions world-wide as an excellent credential for admission.

The bi-lingual aspect of the program is an added feature of the school. MHIS believes that meaningful and early exposure to more than one language will provide students with advanced cognitive development. All students will pursue a single program taught in both Chinese (Putonghua) and English. Bilingual mastery of Chinese and English is the goal for every student. The time devoted to each language is dependent on the age of the student with the ratio shifting as the student advances from the Pre-School program to the Lower School and to the Upper School.

The Pre-School will feature 15 large classrooms, dedicated Art and Music rooms, a well-resourced library designed specifically for 3-5 year olds, a spacious indoor multi-purpose room and a large partially covered outdoor play-ground.

The advanced school design in the Lower and Upper Schools will feature two well-resourced libraries, an aquatics center, spacious gymnasiums, an auditorium, large multi-purpose assembly halls, advanced science laboratories, well-equipped studios for music, art and film, Design and Communication Technology labs, playing fields, and a 400-meter outdoor track. Dr. Catherine Chu says, "In addition, the school will have a wonderful opportunity to leverage the world-class golf, tennis and NHL size ice-rink facilities that Mission Hills enjoys."

Student boarding facilities and staff housing will be also be designed and constructed as part of the Phase 2 development.

Launch Ceremony

Launch Ceremony

Rendering Image of Mission Hills International School

Dr. Ken Chu

John Jalsevac

Dr. Catherine Chu