Dalton School Hong Kong – I am not led, I lead

Location – G/F, Imperial Cullinan, 10 Hoi Fai Road, Kowloon

Website – https://dshk.edu.hk/

Contact – 3612 4660

1. Please mention about the school and its mission/vision and various infrastructural facilities.

Brief Overview: DSHK is a child-centered and inquiry-based school that uses a dual language model for developing Chinese and English in a fully immersive way. Chinese culture and values help anchor our learning culture while students seek to understand a global perspective.

Mission: Dalton School Hong Kong is a child-centered, dual-language community of global-minded learners and thinkers. We are confident, creative and adaptable, embrace differences, change and challenges. We are happily engaged, self-motivated, resilient and independent. We have a deep sense of responsibility and seek to contribute to the world with dedication, respect and compassion. Everyone in our community including our students, alumni, staff, families, and board will live our motto and take the lead in our life-long learning: “I am not led, I lead.”

Vision: Dalton School Hong Kong will be a leader in education and fulfil our mission by:

  • Putting the whole child at the center of learning, tailoring the experience to each child’s talents, interests and needs, equipping each to fulfil his or her unique potential through the Dalton Plan;
  • Offering an academically rigorous, balanced and engaging intercultural Putonghua/English curriculum, strengthened by collaboration with global leaders;
  • Valuing and respecting, developing and supporting our staff, parents and alumni as our students’ partners in learning; and
  • Adopting and contributing to innovation and educational research in Hong Kong and internationally.

Key Beliefs: At Dalton School Hong Kong, we believe:

  • The child should be the center of education;
  • In educating our students for tomorrow, not for yesterday;
  • Bilingual and bi-literate Putonghua and English capabilities are of critical importance;
  • In Chinese virtues and values, combined with a multi-cultural perspective;
  • In collaborating with and serving our staff, families, alumni, the Hong Kong community and the global community.

Key Infrastructure

  • Nearly 100,000 square foot campus that includes STEAM lab, art studio, dance studio, music and performance space, and multi-purpose PE and sport spaces. In addition to the campus located at Imperial Culinan, DSHK also makes use of the outdoor golf, tennis, and soccer facilities at the nearby Waterfall Club.

2. Kindly mention about the prominent personality of the school and his/her role in the development of the school.

Our Foundation Board is led by a board of renowned educators, top business leaders and its own founding directors, all of whom aspire to develop a new school that will further elevate Hong Kong as a leading city in quality education. Together they have almost 100 years of education and school administration experience plus over a century of business, financial, and legal experience.

DSHK was founded by Eva To, Peggy Yeoh, Emily Chan, and Kris Tong. These four women set out to create a school that met the demands of the 21st century through a progressive, child-led approach to education, while staying true to core Chinese values and principles.

3. Kindly describe about the various courses offered by the school and their salient features.

DSHK structures its courses according to the Dalton Plan, the goal of which is to individualize learning to each child. The Dalton Plan incorporates the House, Lab, and Assignment throughout the day. House is the homeroom community that is led by a House English and House Chinese Teacher. Lab is the part of the day where students are given choice over their learning. These choices are related to the inquiry topic and content standards the class is studying. During that time, teachers work with individual and small groups of students based on their specific learning needs. The Assignment is the long term project or task that students help plan and design. This could be anything from a published story to a collaborative inquiry project.

The class subjects include core subjects such as Chinese and English Literacy, Integrated Social Studies, and S.T.E.A.M. Students have specialists classes in Art, Music, PE, and Performing Arts (eg. Dance and Theatre). Finally, students experience a special “X-Time” that is entirely designed by them. These classes include everything from cooking, coding, WuShu, and Magic.

4. Please mention what steps are you taking beyond the traditional curriculum to ensure overall development of the students?

At DSHK, we believe that the core curriculum is only the floor. For many students, it is the specialist courses and/or X-Time that really sparks their interests and curiosity and helps build their confidence across subject areas. As mentioned above, some of these courses include: specialists classes in Art, Music, PE, and Performing Arts (eg. Dance and Theatre). Finally, students experience a special “X-Time” that is entirely designed by them. These classes include everything from cooking, coding, WuShu, and Magic.

We also offer a wide range of extracurricular activities in the areas of: 1) Chinese Culture; 2) Creative Arts; 3) Sports; and 4) STEAM. Chinese culture classes include Calligraphy, Wushu, Guzheng, and Paper Cutting. Creative Arts include painting, sculpting, choir, and ensemble.

Sports include team sports like basketball and soccer, as well as individual sports such as golf, tennis, and gymnastics. STEAM classes include Chess, coding, Digital Music, and Wood Work.

Furthermore, DSHK believes that developing students’ emotional intelligence is critically important. Therefore, we use a Chinese Values and Habits of Mind Framework to connect each subject area. Our values help anchor our beliefs, and our habits help us practice these values. Values include things like benevolence and trustworthiness, while habits include persistence, managing impulsivity, and listening with understanding and empathy.

5. What steps does the school take to motivate and develop the students’ interest towards education?

 As a child-centered and student-led school, students’ interests are at the heart of everything we do. An excellent example of this is our approach to inquiry. Each unit, students, not teachers, select the topic of inquiry. Topics have included everything from Titanic to Bio-diversity. Inquiry topics can vary from class to class and year to year based on the interests of the students. Once the topic is selected, then teachers across subject areas work to integrate the topic into their content area.

In addition to the class inquiry topics, students are also given a great deal of individual voice and choice in their learning. For example, when students may have choice in the genre and/or topic they write.

Finally, learning is relevant to students’ lives. Teachers strive to connect the real world to students. This is done through excursions outside of school and creating common contexts that relate to students’ lives outside of school.

6. How are you providing financial assistance to the students in need?

DSHK has a Dalton Cares Initiative that supports families with financial assistance based on 3 areas: 1) Bridging Program; 2) Helen Scott Resilience Scholarship; and 3) Financial Need. The Bridging Program is designed to provide financial assistance to families who may be bridging from a local school environment toward an international school setting. The size of the financial award is based on the family’s demonstrated need. Second, in remembrance of one of DSHK’s first parent supporters, the Helen Scott Resilience Scholarship is awarded to students who demonstrate extraordinary strength and resilience in the face of challenging obstacles. Third, DSHK provides financial assistance to enrolled families who experience a sudden change in family income and/or hardship that impacts the families’ finances.

7. What are the career opportunities available to the students after completion of their courses?

DSHK is a primary school so students do not immediately enter the workforce or university. However, a DSHK graduate is well-suited toward a career path that is aligned with each child’s passions and interests. DSHK graduates will share many characteristics of those who lead entrepreneurial ventures.

8. Other than traditional occupations, what other career field options are available for them?

DSHK places a major emphasis on STEAM, while also emphasizing human skills and social-emotional intelligence. This makes them well suited for jobs within the technology industry, as well as for jobs that do not yet exist.

9. Please enlighten us about the school’s major awards/achievements, its accomplished/renowned alumni, remarkable collaborations, and major accreditations.

 DSHK partners with the prestigious Tsinghua University Primary School, which is a leader in education in Mainland China. DSHK is a new partner with école42, which is a leading computer programming school that offers a secondary alternative that is equivalent to a Software Engineering Degree at Stanford. DSHK is CIS membership school and on the path toward full accreditation, which is a considerable accomplishment for a school so new. DSHK is a leader in Dual Language education in Asia, serving as 1 of 2 schools in Asia recognized by the Center for Applied Linguistics and Dr. José Medina for Dual Language education. Lastly, DSHK follows the Dalton Plan, developed by Helen Parkhurst and Dalton New York, which is renowned for its progressive approach to education and success rate with sending graduates to the most prestigious universities in the world.

10. Kindly elaborate about the future plans of the school in the same.

 DSHK plans to expand to middle school, which includes grades 6,7, and 8 in 2022. After that, the school will seek to expand to high school, serving grades 9-12. The high school will have a special focus on STEAM education in collaboration with école42.

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