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The Principal's Newsletter

WASC Accreditation Committee to visit in April

By Francesco Masetti-Placci

Dear Parents and friends,

We all just celebrated the Lantern Festival, a Chinese festival on the fifteenth day of the first month in the lunisolar Chinese calendar. It marks the final day of the traditional Chinese New Year celebrations, and this year was on 22nd Feb, last Monday. Hanova Chinese staff shared the traditional food Yuanxiao, also called Tangyuan - the small dumpling balls made of glutinous rice flour - with the International staff to celebrate the day.

In parallel, we continue to bring news and activities to our students, as you can see from the highlights reported this week.

Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) Accreditation. To continue to provide a high-quality learning environment for our students, Hanova started the preparation process for WASC Accreditation in 2013 and the project was officially launched at end of October 2015. The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) is one of six official academic bodies responsible for the accreditation of public and private universities, primary and elementary schools in the United States and foreign institutions of American origin. 

During the past months, and especially during the past holidays, our WASC accreditation team has put an all-out effort to prepare the WASC School Description Form, which is required to apply for the Initial Visit from the WASC Accreditation Committee. We successfully submitted this document at the end of January 2016, receiving an immediate positive feedback from the WASC office. I quote from their message: “I have now read carefully through the school description form that you submitted. It is clear that you folks have done an exceptional job in responding to the ACS WASC prompts ... . We are impressed in the quality of the work you forwarded. I conclude that you are a very well organized school with much policy documentation in place. You have much of which to be proud. Clearly, you are ready for your initial visit.”

As mentioned in the WASC feedback, we are glad to inform you all that we expect our Initial Visit from the WASC Accreditation Committee to take place in April. Please join me to congratulate the teams involved, and we will keep you informed of our next steps in this new accreditation process.

Model United Nations. Last weekend, from 19th to 21st February, 8 of our students from Year 10 to Year 12 joined the 10th session of Nanyang Technological University Model United Nations (NTUMUN), organized in Singapore. Nanyang Technological University (NTU) is one of Asia’s leading young institutions, among the world’s top 50 universities, portraying independence, diversity and excellence in all the activities, including their MUN conference. Our students met with other delegates from around the world, representing both high schools and universities, and demonstrated to all their preparation and knowledge. Please contact Mrs. Masetti ( to obtain more information and congratulations to all for the wonderful achievement.

UCAS. The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK-based organization whose main role is to operate the application process for British universities. Our school has been working to become a UCAS centre, now I’m glad to inform you that our UCAS centre has been authorized and that Hanova is an official UCAS registered centre. Please contact our University and Careers Counselor Mrs. Zhu ( to obtain more information.

PYP Training. Last week Hanova hosted an IB PYP workshop related to deepening concept based education as part of strengthening our teaching and learning community.  A number teachers and admin staff had the opportunity last week to participate in this IB Professional Development Workshop run by Lisa Diannems. This commitment from Hanova to the development of its staff with increased programme understanding will have direct community and student learning benefits.

So don’t be surprised if your child discusses conceptual questions with you based on form, function, connection, change, responsibility, perspective, reflection or causation. It will be just evidence of the deepening appreciation and dedication we have to our lifelong learners.

Upcoming Events. Please take note of these last upcoming events during the month of February:

  • Marcus Meadham, our DP Coordinator will have an information session on DP subject options on Wednesday 2nd March at 3.45 pm in the auditorium. DP Teachers will then introduce the subjects to students and parents.
  • Joseph Hamkari, our MYP Coordinator will have an information session on Service and Action for all MYP parents on Wednesday 2nd March at 3.45 pm in the auditorium.
  • The University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown will visit Hanova on 9th March at 11:00am.
  • The Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management will visit Hanova again Hanova on 18th March at 14:00.

Thanks again for your continuing support.


Francesco Masetti-Placci

About the Author

Francesco Masetti-Placci

Former School Principal

Dr. Masetti-Placci was a former school Principal of Xi'an Hanova International School from 2015-2018. He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from University of Bologna and a Master in Information Technology from Polytechnic of Milan, with studies also in France (University of Rennes) and the USA (Washington University). Before joining Hanova, he previously has taught in secondary schools and universities in Italy, France, USA and China.

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