Secondary Opening Newsletter

Dear Secondary Parents,

I hope that you and your families have enjoyed your holidays and that you are looking forward to the school year ahead. Please read this Opening Newsletter carefully, along with the attached Student Parent Handbook. Both documents will help provide new and returning families with useful information for the start of the 2018-2019 school year.

New Secondary School Faculty and Staff

We welcome a number of new teachers to the Secondary School this year.

  • Mr. Ross Ferris Secondary Principal
  • Mrs. Anna Erickson – MYP Individuals and Societies & English
  • Mr. Nathaniel Erickson – MYP Design and IT Coordinator
  • Mr. Michael Collins – MYP Mathematics
  • Mr. Murat Gokalp – MYP and DP Mathematics
  • Ms. Lucy Taylor – DP Spanish ab initio, MYP English Language and Literature
  • Mrs. Rachael Gerbic – School Counselor, MYP Physical and Health Educations
  • Ms. Sarah Alborn – MYP Drama and DP Theater
  • Mrs. Canan Cermen – MYP Sciences and DP Environmental Systems and Societies 


Over the summer the maintenance staff has been hard at work getting all of our facilities ready for the start of another new year including a significant amount of repainting which has freshened the appearance of the Secondary School.

Accreditation and Evaluation

The school will be conducting the self-study for CIS/WASC and IB (PYP, MYP and DP) reaccreditation during this school year with a pre-authorization visit scheduled for April, 2019.

A note about campus security

All parents and staff are asked to wear their ID Badges when they come to school. Please understand that admittance to campus will not be allowed without an ID badge. It is our responsibility to be role models for this behavior, helping to ensure a safe school environment for our students.

First day – Monday, August 6th

School begins for all Secondary Students on Monday, August 6th.  Students will begin their day with an assembly in the MPR at 7:45 am.  Homeroom lists are available in Appendix 1. There will also be a hard copy posted at the Secondary School Office.  After an extended homeroom session, all Secondary Students will follow their regular school day schedule which is accessible via Dragon. This is Monday’s schedule:


Arrival time

All teachers are on campus before 7:30 and supervision does not begin until that time.  Students may go into rooms from 7:30 onwards and the school day officially begins at 7:45. It is important that students are punctual for the start of the school day so that attendance can be taken and important routines established.  Attendance will be taken at homeroom and throughout each class and the first block attendance will be used to let teachers know which students are on campus. If your child comes late they must report to the Secondary Office to sign in. Please look at our Attendance Policy within the Student/Parent Handbook.


Students are dismissed from school at 2:45. If students have after school activities, they will begin at 3:00 and be completed by 4:00pm. The After School Activities program is set to begin on Monday, August 13th.  Students will receive information regarding our offerings within the first week of school.  Providing a balanced and holistic education is extremely important to the growth and development of all of our students and these activities present a wonderful opportunity for students to explore their interests and to develop the new skills and passions.


It is important that we maintain an open line of communication between the three key stakeholders in a student’s education: Students, Parents and Teachers.  Although we encourage our students to be self-advocates, parents play a vital role in ensuring students are supported at home and by following school policies and procedures.  If there is anything you would like to address with a member of staff, please contact them directly. All of our teachers are available via email and are available at a mutually agreeable time to meet with parents. Please contact if you are unsure who to contact or if you want  general information. Secondary Newsletter will be sent to eNews every Friday.

Preparing your child for success at BIS in 2018-19

Parents have a vital role to play in the ongoing development of their children. This can be challenging considering the adolescent years are a time of significant physical, emotional, and social growth which affect each teenager differently. Teenagers, although they might not always show it, are grateful for their parents to be engaged and supportive of their progress and growth.

Back to School Night

Back to School Night will be held on Thursday, August 24th from 4-6pm.  This will start in the MPR where parents will receive information about the IB Middle Years Programme (MYP) and the Diploma Programme (DP).  Parents will then follow their child’s schedule to receive information about each of the classes they are attending. More information regarding this will be sent by the Secondary Secretary in coming weeks.

Important dates

Yes, our calendar is packed with events, some of which I have already referred to. Please keep yourselves informed of all that is going on. You will receive more information in due course.

In the meantime, here are a few important dates to keep in mind for August and September.

  • Thursday, August 2nd – Orientation for New Students
  • Monday, August 6th    – First Day of School
  • Monday, August 24th  – Morning Parent Presentation on Campus Security
  • Thursday, August 16th – Whole school celebration of Independence Day
  • Friday, August 24th – Meet the Teachers Potluck
  • Monday, September 3rd – Parent Information Session: MYP for New Parents
  • Monday, September 10th-DP Parent information Session: DP for New    Parents
  • Monday, September 17th – Morning Parent Presentation on EOTC Week
  • Tuesday to Friday, September 25th-28th – Secondary EOTC Trips
  • Thursday, October 4th – Whole School Conferences

Parent roles to assist at BIS

The role that a parent plays is vital in the growth of their child at school.  There are many ways to become involved within the school and your child’s education.  Here are a few possibilities:

  • Provide a welcome to new families and students
  • Be a part of school organized curricular events
  • Attend information sessions and providing feedback to the Secondary Principal
  • Be present at student events-Drama, Sports, Cultural
  • Serve on the school board to help provide strategic direction
  • Attend PTFA meetings to engage with parent organized initiatives
  • Participate in ongoing, school-endorsed community engagement projects

Creating a community starts with involvement and engagement. I look forward to being a part of the BIS community this year and helping to foster continued growth amongst all of its members.

Information about the Secondary School will come from our parent presentations/workshops, eNews, classroom bulletins, emails and of course face-to-face conversations.  I look forward to continuing with you the positive and nurturing environment that BIS has created.

Kind regards,

Ross Ferris

Secondary Principal

Bali Island School

Appendix 1 – Homerooms, HR teachers and locker locations