School Calendars

Call Us

+86 029 88693780

The Principal's Newsletter

Secondary students return from Yangshuo Residential Trip

By Mr Martin Hughes

Dear Parents and

Cambridge International Exams (CIE). After our successful IB authorisation for the Diploma earlier this year, it is with great pleasure that we can report on the CIE Inspection Visit that took place on Tuesday. Whilst this was not as rigorous as the Diploma Verification Visit, a lot of work went into the documentation and preparation for the inspection. Mr Sam Mirison, our CIE Exam Officer, and Ms Hilary Hao, our IB Administrator, are to be congratulated for their excellent efforts. Mr. Brian Qian, the CIE Visitor was clearly impressed by and complimented us on the quality of our preparation, knowledge and documentation. He stated that the remaining process would be expedited and that we would receive our authorisation to become a CIE Examination Centre by August this year. Mr Qian also expressed his interest in Hanova becoming a CIE Teacher Training Centre, which would allow us to host training workshops for our teaching staff and teachers from other local and international schools in China and beyond.

This is excellent news for our students; they will now be able to sit the IGCSE examinations at the end of Year 11, starting next academic year. It is also good for the school because now we will be able to allow external students from other schools to sit CIE examinations.

Y7-9 Residential to Yangshuo. Last week Year 7, 8, and 9 students went to Yangshuo for their Residential visit. Due to ongoing rain, the camping activities had to be cancelled and they stayed in hotels instead. The skilful Terratribes staff arranged an adjusted programme and there were plenty of exciting and challenging activities undertaken such as Tai Chi, rock climbing, zip lining, and teaching at a local school. All of this took place in Yangshuo’s impressive green and mountainous scenery. The teachers were especially proud of our students’ work at the local school, West Ridge, where they showed a great deal of responsibility and skill, providing interesting and entertaining activities for the local children. It is safe to say that our students learned a lot from this successful trip and returned to Xi’an with new friendships made and a lot of personal achievements to think about. Go to the trip photo album...

Football match. We welcomed students and staff from Xi’an International School (XIS) to Hanova last Friday for a football match.  A really close and sporting game ensued with two well matched and skilful teams.  The match was tied 2-2 until right near the end when Hanova got a 3rd goal.  Congratulations to the students from both teams for representing their schools so well, and we look forward to our next encounter.

University visits. As part of the continuing programme of visits by top international universities to our school campus, last week we hosted St Andrews University from the United Kingdom, and New York University Abu Dhabi from the United Arab Emirates. Both universities are ranked among the global elite, are very selective and demonstrated to our students the challenges to enter their undergraduate programmes.  They also identified the significant advantages experienced by students completing a full IB Diploma Programme. The discussions also highlighted the importance of the attitude of successful students to enter and succeed in any elite programme. The admission officers encouraged our students to proactively seek the support, coaching and recommendations of our teachers and especially of our University Counsellor, Ms Sharon Zhu. This week we also hosted the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, demonstrating the increasing number of contacts and interest of American universities in our school.

Staffing and classes for 2015-16. The school has almost finalised the staffing for next year, and there is just one unfilled vacancy.  The timetable and allocation of teachers has been planned for the Secondary and we are now finalising the number of classes in the Primary, with one, or possibly two, year groups having more than one class.  It has been worth taking time to complete the staffing complement as we have been able to ensure the appointment of a highly qualified and experienced teaching team.  We will send information out to parents before the end of the school year about these exciting appointments.  Once the last piece has been fitted in, then we can finalise the placement particularly of Primary staff.  Like all good teachers many are able to teach in several year groups and we wish to get the best balance to ensure we utilise teachers’ strengths to the maximum.  As in most international schools there is some turnover of teaching staff as people complete contracts and move on to pastures new.  We will inform you of the allocation of teaching staff as soon as possible.

On Monday, 15th June Primary students will have a taster transition hour in their new classes where they can meet their classmates and their next year’s teacher, where these are already in school.  Current Y6 will have a taster day in Y7.

Reports and Parent Consultations. The reports are currently being written by the teaching staff.  They will be available on Friday, 12th June. The main purpose of the reports is to formally communicate information to parents twice a year on their child’s progress and achievement as a learner.

Each student is unique in their profile of learning across the broad range of academic, intellectual, social, emotional and physical development.  The report will identify strengths and challenges as well as indicating next steps that might assist in improving learning.

Parents may have questions they wish to raise or issues to clarify after receiving the reports.  Staff will be available during the week beginning 15th June.  Please contact Ms Lucy Liu ( or Zena Yang ( if you would like a consultation with a teacher(s).

Student Led Conferences. Student Led Conferences for the Primary are on Wednesday, 10th June.  The Student Led Conference is one of many ways for sharing student learning with parents. These conferences provide an excellent chance for students to reflect on their own learning, share their work and discuss what they have learnt so far, as well as share their feelings about school within the school environment. Parents have an opportunity to gain a brief understanding of the learning that has occurred in the classroom this year. The students will direct their parents during the conference with the teacher acting as support if students require it.

A separate letter has gone out to Primary parents with more details on.  We hope you are able to support your child by attending this event.

Extra Curricular Activities (ECAs). Please note the last session of these for this school year was completed this week.  We hope your child enjoyed and got value from their ECA.  From next week buses will be leaving on Wednesdays at 3:45pm – an hour earlier. 

Hanova Carnival. Please remember next Saturday, 6th June, is Hanova Carnival.  We do hope to see everyone there for a day of fun, food and talent, when you will at the same time be supporting our chosen charities of Elim Kids Orphanage and UNICEF earthquake relief for children in Nepal.

If you are able to help on the day, or are able to provide some gently used items for the yard sale, or are able to bring in some food (a highlight of most Hanova events!) we will be most grateful.  More details in last week’s Newsletter.

Carnival Schedule:

Games and activities: 9:00am-12:00pm

IGCSE and DP workshop: 11:00am

International buffet lunch: 12:00-1:00pm

Talent Show: 1:00-2:30pm

See you all then!

Best regards,

Martin Hughes


Forthcoming events                

Friday, 29th                                  Personal Project presentations 12:40

Friday, 29th                                  New applicants receive offer or refusal of place at Hanova


Wednesday, 2nd                         Buses leave at 3:45pm – no ECAs until next school year

Thursday, 4th and Friday, 5th   Middle Year Programme Consultant visit

Saturday, 6th                               Hanova Carnival and Talent show

Monday, 8th                                Y7 Information session for current Y6 Parents

Wednesday, 10th                        Student Led Conferences – PYP

Friday, 12th                                  Second Semester reports available

Monday, 15th                              Y6-7 Transition Day.  Primary Transition morning

Monday, 15th to Thursday, 18th Parent Consultations – by appointment

Friday, 19th                                  Last Day – half day.  Buses leave at 1pm


Friday, 14th                                  New Family and Student Orientation day

Monday, 17th                              First day of 2015-16 Academic Year

About the Author

Martin Hughes

Former School Principal

Mr Martin Hughes was the founding Principal of Hanova from 2012-15. Prior to his time at Hanova, he already had 23 years of experience as Principal in the UK and China at five different schools - including posts at Wuxi EtonHouse and EtonHouse's flagship Suzhou school. During his time as founding Principal at Hanova, he helped support the initial IB Diploma Programme authorisation (2014) and used his educational vision to help plant our then brand new school on a firm foundation. Under his leadership, Hanova's motto emerged, "Enabling children to become independent, creative and lifelong learners!"

More News & Events

© 2012-24 Xi’an Hanova International School. All Rights Reserved.