The School Office: YCIS-BJ Front Liners
The key to running a school efficiently requires efforts in all parts of a whole and at the Yew Chung International School of Beijing, these efforts are made by the many departments, and in particular, the School Office. This team of five sees to the conveying of important school related information to parents and the day to day running of the administrative aspects of our school. They are essentially YCIS Beijing’s information center, communication center and service center.
The lockdown has not prevented Kiko Wang, Head of School Office, and her team from performing all their tasks despite their different locations, some already in Beijing and others who will return this weekend.
A majority of their tasks have remained the same during the eLearning period and they include keeping parents updated on weekly schedules, announcements, events and school news through WeChat. The school’s COVID-19 related communication is also sent through this particular office.
A different activity that is to be noted however, is the continual communication regarding the Students Survey. “We need to submit information to the Beijing Education Commission every day, so parents might have received many reminders from the School Office, like phone calls, WeChat reminders, emails, etc.” explains Miss Wang. Although this can be overwhelming for parents, it is particularly important to guarantee all stakeholders’ wellbeing, especially our students'.
Additional communication between the Office and parents has been assisting with questions regarding returning to Beijing. Miss Wang shares that “parents overseas feel unsure about coming back to China and would like to know if they need any documents, like an invitation letter from school before they can return. We explain to them the current policy China has and assure them that we are always available to assist when they need help.” Especially with the rules continuously being amended.
Working remotely for a highly administrative department has not come without challenges, and for the School Office, access to documents has been a hindrance “We have some parents applying for student reports, but some reports are stored in office’s filing room, so we are not able to send to parents before school reopens” she noted. Fortunately, parents have been highly understanding of the current circumstances.
In preparation for the school’s reopening, “we are preparing the response plan and necessary arrangements with other departments so that we can make sure we have a smooth and safe reopening soon” she said. In addition to working collaboratively with other divisions, the Office is also “preparing a plan B for our annual yearbook project in case we won’t have photographers from Hong Kong come over to take photos for our students and staff” due to the lockdown.
As this lockdown continues, our entire school community is looking forward to when we can all finally return to campus and resume with life as we know it. Kiko and her team are always available to lend a helping hand to parents, and “we would like to thank all the parents for staying with us, their support and kind suggestions as YCIS Beijing family members. We also would like to thank all the staff, we couldn’t make it without any one of them.”
She concludes by the following words of encouragement, “Tomorrow will be better, we believe, and hope to see all of you very soon, and together enjoy Beijing’s wonderful Spring season.”