FRIDAY FLYER-Issue 179

Headmaster's Welcome

We hope you have had a great week. We have all been busy at Epsom as you can see from ourEpsom Events document.

Last week, our students (and a few of our teachers) performed in our school production of "We Will Rock You," and it was an absolute triumph!

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We extend our heartfelt gratitude to those parents who were able to attend one or more of the shows. I hope that everyone could get a flavor of the incredible energy, commitment, and joy of the performers from the photos provided.

I am certain you will join me in conveying our congratulations and gratitude to Mrs. Tamlyn Calder and Mr. Russell Crann, assisted by Mrs. Jennifer Garnett, for their dedication, vision, and inspiration, which enabled such wonderful student performances. I know that all the performers learned so much from this opportunity and experienced the rare joy of wowing an audience with their brilliant acting and singing. Well done and thank you to all who contributed. We were already looking forward to the next events as follows:

  • Epsom Instrumental Music Competition, 13th March: Daytime - Competition, Evening - Concert in the Theatre Friday Flyer
  • Epsom’s Night at the Movies - Senior School Concert, 27th March Friday Flyer
  • Epsom Culture Day was also a resounding success and we thank all who so generously gave of their time to make it so! Friday Flyer

As you will see as you read on, this week we celebrated World Book Week. The theme was the Wonka Chocolate Factory and the ever supportive (and creative) Friends of Epsom prepared unique chocolate bars for the day made of special Epsom Ingredients! - Kindness, Compassion, Empathy, Generosity and Joy!

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In January, Epsom was visited by an accreditation team from COBIS (the Council of British International Schools). This visit marked the final stage of a twelve-month process of independent assessment of the quality of the school's work with regard to the COBIS Standards.

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It gives me great pleasure to share with you that last week, I received official confirmation that Epsom College in Malaysia had been awarded the status of COBIS Accredited Member, confirming that the COBIS Board was fully assured that the provision of our school met their high standards across all ten areas of their assessment framework. In addition to attaining the COBIS Accredited Member status, Epsom has the rare honor of being awarded the COBIS Beacon School status (given for particular excellence) in two of the Standards: Student Welfare and Leadership. This highly regarded, independent accreditation and recognition provide assurance to our current families, as well as those considering joining our school, that the education and care we provide here at Epsom College in Malaysia meets the exacting COBIS standards and is in line with other excellent British International Schools across the world. This important milestone affirms Epsom’s progress and quality as we celebrate our 10th year. The detailed feedback from COBIS includes specific 'Commendations' in every standard as well as suggested 'Next Steps,' which will inform our ongoing development planning. These will be shared with our families in due course.

We hope that you enjoy the articles to come and wish you Happy Reading and a very Happy Friday!

Best wishes,
Mr Matthew Brown,
Headmaster

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A Message from our Leadership Team SLT, Avis Parker, Second Master

We often advocate that students should develop the skills embodied in the Epsom Learning Characteristics (ELC) because we firmly believe that it is not a case of how able you are or how hard you work that counts the most but rather mastering a number of competencies which are transferable and useful for life-long learning and success beyond school and academics.  We frequently have assemblies based on the ELC. We have seen assemblies based on Collaboration, Thinking and Organisation from Mr Thompson and assemblies from Mr Stearman on Resilience and Creativity. They always use real life examples to demonstrate each characteristic.  For instance the success of The International Space Station for Collaboration, the surfer Bethany Hamilton for Resilience and problem solving to demonstrate Thinking.  Many of our students refer regularly to the ELC now as we award students each term for the ability to demonstrate these characteristics to a high level, but why are they important for lifelong learning and what is the connection to a PhD in Well-being.

In 2018, I decided to return to education and study for a second MA in Pastoral Care and Well-being.  I had not studied for almost 20 years, but I was very interested in supporting the students better in another international school in Kuala Lumpur in my role as Head of Key Stage 4.  Most of the students I was supporting were not from the UK and I wondered whether what I had learned over the years about pastoral care in Britain was the best fit for the students that I interacted with on a daily basis in Malaysia, many of whom were Asian.  Reflection and Curiosity had led me to believe that I needed to develop a better understanding of pastoral care  and well-being in a Malaysian context.  Was my understanding of pastoral care and well-being enough to help and support students from other nationalities?  Studying for an MA, working full time, being a mum and wife was tough; there were many weeknights and weekends where I burned the midnight oil trying to complete assignments. There were many times I wondered whether I could cope and a number of occasions when I wondered whether it was worth it.  However, the Resilience that I had built up over a number of years enabled me to push through difficult weeks; I missed deadlines and had to ask for extensions and I was told that I needed to be more Organised if I wanted to succeed. I was often learning something new; new information, new skills and new things about myself.  I had to learn to analyse more deeply, think more critically and develop a deep understanding of pastoral care and well-being.  My Thinking was being challenged frequently, but I began to really flourish and I was doing well.  So well, that 2 years into a 3 year MA, I decided to stop!  Not perhaps for the many reasons I could have had, but because I had been approached by the university to ask if I was interested in transferring to a PhD program.  I exited my MA with a 1:1 Post Graduate Diploma in Pastoral Care and Well-being and started my application for a PhD in Well-being of international students in 2020.

It was also resilience which played a part in the next stage of my story. Applications and interviews for PhD programs are rigorous and I had to put together a proposal of what I wanted to research, but where would I start?  I had to be Creative; I had to use what I already knew about well-being from previous studies and come up with a unique question which would add to world-wide academic knowledge on the well-being of children.  On top of this, I had to decide on a theoretical approach as well as my ontological and epistemological stance.  But, I neither knew what these meant nor understood their meaning even after I had read about them.  I had to pay real Attention; I had to concentrate, focus and immerse myself in academia to hone my understanding of the fundamental key concepts of a PhD .  Finally in March 2021, my research submission was accepted; I could start a PhD with the working title: ‘What is the well-being of students in an International school in Malaysia?’

So, 7 out of 8 ELC were pivotal to my success on my PhD journey. Which ELC is missing? It is possibly the ELC which is the most important in this story: Collaboration.  Along my journey, I have collaborated with many people.  For a PhD you are given two supervisors to work with. We discuss, share ideas and they help me to understand key concepts in the same way that teachers support and help the students at Epsom College.  There has been a lot of teamwork, just like the relationship between a teacher and their students in our school.  Moreover, I have collaborated with Mr Brown and Mrs Fowler to find an angle to the research which might further the understanding of well-being in the school to better support the different groups of students in our community.  Most importantly, the research, which is now almost complete, would not have been possible without collaboration with the students who agreed to spend many hours meeting with me, discussing the meaning of well-being and talking about how the school supports them.  They have drawn mind-maps, taken part in cardsorts, taken photographs and created collages of their own well-being to try and help my understanding of the well-being of students from different nationalities within this school.

The moral of the story is that developing the Epsom Learning Characteristics are pivotal to academic success and life-long learning; engaging with them will not only enhance student learning but when highly developed, also give skills for life.

Propert House Brief!

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Last weekend, the boys enjoyed a footgolf session organised by Mrs Miller, a nine hole course which was tackled in groups of four. The hour-long activity presented the boys with a unique opportunity for some friendly competition and a test of their footballing skills. Special congrats to Aidan who managed to complete the course with the lowest score of 43.

During the same weekend, Propert seniors Ben, Aidan, Kheeshan, Damon, Hong Zhi and Jayden represented Epsom in a badminton tournament held at Alice Smith. The boys played against other International schools around Kuala Lumpur such as Taylor's International School, Mont Kiara International School and The International School @Park City. They came out of the event with commendable results with achieving 5th place overall. Congratulations to each of the representatives, embarking a strong representation of Propert House.

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Bringing the spirit of badminton into Propert, Kheeshan organised an inter-Propert badminton tournament which will be going on throughout this half term. With all the buzz about the opening round of matches, it will be interesting to see how the tournament progresses, especially how Mr Richardson will fare against the Propert boys!

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Last but not least, our Year 12 students are currently in the midst of their Term 2 trials and are awaiting decisions on their Prefect applications. With the aim of getting as many of our Year 12s into the upcoming Prefect team, the majority of our applicants have had mock interviews with Mr. Chris in hopes of building up the competitiveness of their overall application. As this week marks the end of House interviews, Kheeshan, Nabil and Hong Zhi will be required to give a minute-long speech to prove why they deserve to be a House Prefect. Becoming a Prefect will essentially give our boys the opportunity to lead the school for the next year and allow them to grow and develop as individuals which will hopefully inspire the Propert Juniors to one day do the same.

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The week ended with a tremendous celebration to ring in the Chinese New Year with Yee Sang - a special thanks to Melvern and his family who donated it for our House!

Best wishes,

Kheeshan,
Year 12, Propert House.

Crawfurd House Updates 📌

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This week our Crawfurd girls are researching the meaning behind their motto;

Durum, Patientia, Frango.

They are creating short videos to explain how ‘by patience, they can break what is hard’. This coincides with one of the school learning principles and the videos will be collated and shared to parents before the Spring break. We also were excited to see the re-development of the ‘day girl room’. The students were happy to relax between classes and integrate within year groups. We will share photos shortly. We have a few more finishing touches left and are excited to share with you the results of our work soon! 💜

Special Student Demonstration Hosted by Specialist Heart Surgeon Professor David O'Regan

We are most fortunate at Epsom to have extremely supportive parents. One such parent is Professor David O’Regan - a distinguished British surgeon and professor at Imperial College.

A renowned surgeon with extensive experience in a variety of surgical disciplines, David is also a passionate educator and has a strong commitment to fostering the next generation of medical professionals. Following his recent Epsom Live Talk in February, David gave generously of his time to come to school and conduct a heart dissection workshop with our students.

David graduated from Southampton University in 1985 and has more than two decades of experience as a consultant cardiac surgeon, having performed more than 3,000 adult cardiac cases. This hands-on experience provided our Year 12 and Year 13 A-Level students with a profound insight into the intricacies of the human heart and the field of cardiology.

The event commenced with an engaging discussion and observation of the outside of the heart prior to the identification of the major vessels, where students utilised coloured straws to understand the flow of oxygenated and deoxygenated blood through this fascinating organ. This interactive exercise not only reinforced classroom learning but also served as a dynamic way to comprehend the vital processes within the circulatory system.

A pivotal aspect of the event was the live dissection conducted by David. With the aid of a camera setup, students were able to observe the dissection in real time, whilst conducting their own dissections, allowing for a close examination of the heart's structures and functions. David's expertise and guidance provided invaluable insights into the anatomy of the heart, enhancing students' understanding of its complexities.

Moreover, as a cardiac surgeon, David went beyond the dissection itself to impart additional knowledge on common heart defects and diseases. Students gained insight into various cardiac conditions and learned about surgical interventions aimed at repairing these defects. This comprehensive overview not only broadened their understanding of cardiology but also sparked interest in potential career paths within the medical field.

The event was a resounding success, thanks to David's expertise and the active participation of our students. It exemplified our commitment to providing innovative and enriching educational experiences that extend beyond the confines of traditional classroom instruction.

David had many fascinating anecdotes to share with our students that ranged from having operated on tiny babies' hearts only weighing a few grams to victims of accidents and stabbings. It was a fascinating session, greatly appreciated by our students. We extend our sincere thanks to David for his kindness and support.

The Black Belt Surgical Skills Academy is an online project created by David with the vision to incorporate the values and philosophy of martial artists into medical practice. Wearing both his scrubs and his black belt, David posts online videos to aspiring and training doctors on how to perform basic surgical skills with the mindset of a martial artist.

We extend our heartfelt gratitude to David for generously sharing his time and expertise with our students. Events like these are instrumental in fostering a passion for learning and inspiring future leaders in the field of medicine. We look forward to more such enriching experiences in the future as we continue to nurture curiosity and academic excellence among our students.

Music Department Updates

Last week, students from years 9-13 put on their production of the rock musical WE WILL ROCK YOU. The musical features the music of the rock band Queen and tells the story of a future where society lives entirely through social media and where individual expression is forbidden. The production was a great success with amazing performances from all of the cast and live band. It was held on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday with past and present students, parents and guests watching the three performances. If you weren’t able to make it, please enjoy the photos from the show:

As quickly as an event finishes, more are coming up, and we have a busy few weeks ahead in the Music department as we prepare for our end of term events.

Next week sees the annual Instrumental Music Competition. This event features almost 50 students competing against each other in different rounds, based on their instrument and current level of experience. We are delighted to welcome Mustaqim Abdullah, Co-conductor of the Selangor Symphony Orchestra, as our special guest who will adjudicate the competition and give feedback to our students.

The competition takes place during the school day with a concert in the evening featuring the winners from each round. We hope that you are able to join us in the evening to watch the winners perform.

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The following week features the Prep School Music Concert. This term, the focus of Prep School music lessons has been on folk music. This has been an opportunity for the students to learn about folk music from around the world including music from close to home in Malaysia and as far away as Europe, Africa and the Americas. The choir will be singing traditional Malaysian folk songs, whilst the students in the instrumental programme will showcase music from around the world.

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In the last week of term, we have our popular Night at the Movies concert. Once again, Senior School students (and staff) will be performing their favourite songs from films, whilst clips from the films are projected onto the big screen. Highlights this year include music from The Incredibles, Pocahontas, Toy Story and Barbie as well as many others. Alongside the music, students from the Drama department will act out scenes from the films.

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For some of our students, the last week of term will also be a nervous time as they travel to KL to take ABRSM music exams. We have already seen great success this term with students taking ABRSM online exams. Congratulations to Qaid (Grade 3 Violin), Siha (Grade 4 Cello) and Justina (Grade 5 Theory with Distinction) who all passed exams this year.

Mr Russell Crann,
Director of Performing Arts.

Year 6 AIMS Maths Competition

Last week, our Year 6 Maths competition team went to ISP to compete in the Y6 AIMS Maths competition. There were a variety of events from a scavenger hunt, construction challenge and a maths relay. The children had to use all of their mathematical skills, and even some lateral thinking skills at times, to complete the challenges.

On the first day, the children completed a scavenger hunt, logic puzzles, an individual task and a construction challenge. The scavenger hunt was a particular highlight as the children solved challenging questions in Desa City Park. The logic puzzles were a bit trickier and required the children to think outside the box but they attempted the challenge with great enthusiasm. The day finished with a construction challenge where the children had to build a free standing tower and working crane to lift weights. The children worked together to create two impressive structures.

Everyone was super excited to return to ISP for the second day. The first challenge was the geometry round. The children had to measure different objects using a clinometer, which the children had never seen or used before. They had to apply their measurement skills and knowledge of angles to make it work. A particular highlight of the second day was definitely the maths relay. This event concluded the tournament and challenged the children to use their mental maths speed alongside their problem solving skills to be successful.

The children should be very proud of themselves for competing in such a competitive and challenging competition. They attempted every challenge with enthusiasm and gusto! Y6 were really encouraging to each other and showed some great team work. They were excellent representatives of Epsom College.

Ms Ruth Duck,
Prep School Teacher - Key Stage 2.

Great Golf

Nexus & Tsuyoshi, our two flagship + ECM Golf Academy students, took part in the first leg of the SportExcel Premier Elite event, held at Seremban International Golf Club last week. We would like to congratulate Nexus for finishing 3rd in his category with Tsuyoshi finishing 14th respectively. It’s a strong start to the year for our elite golfers and we wish them all the best for their upcoming tournaments.

KLSL U15 Basketball Tournament

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Our U15 boys and girls teams ventured to Sri KDU, Klang on Monday to take part in the KLSL Basketball tournament for their age category. The teams have played together for a number of matches throughout the academic year so far, and confidence was high amongst the group.

The boys played a 6 team round robin and competed against Sunway, Sri KDU, Fairview, Maverick and Straits International school. Most of their matches were outside and conditions were extremely challenging. Unlucky to not win their first game against Maverick, they fought hard in game two to come from behind and beat Fairview. Straits and Sri KDU proved to be too strong but we were competitive in both of these games. The last game against Sunway was a fantastic spectacle as we put in a dedicated performance but lost 17-9. Oscar sank a number of 3’s and showed great leadership throughout. Monty, Yuritaka, Henry and Qaid were dependable in all of our matches. Andy showed memorable flashes in every game. Gerard, Eric and Hal worked incredibly hard when called upon and were a credit to ECiM. Special mention to Siddhaarth who played his first ever Basketball match and showed great promise both scoring and making a memorable block against Sunway. Overall the boys finished 5th out of 6 teams in what was a very competitive tournament.

Playing their games in the sports hall, the girls team showed tremendous team spirit and tenacity to beat Maverick 16-7 and an impressive win against the hosts Sri KDU 16-10. Points were shared around throughout the team as everybody worked hard and contributed. The final game against Sunway was extremely competitive and hard fought. Sunway eventually came out winners by 1 point taking the game 11-10. The girls team finished a well deserved 2nd place and will be determined to come back stronger next year. A big thank you to Miss Yulia and Mr Fowler.

Mr Miller
Director of Sport

U18 Boys and Girls Basketball KLSL Tournament 2024 in Pictures

ECiM hosted the U18 KLSL Basketball tournament on 29th February. This was the first senior tournament that we have hosted for some years and it was great to share the Epsom experience with teams that we have played in other sports throughout the year. Schools attending were Maverick, Straits International and Beaconhouse.

The boys team started well with a convincing win over Maverick which was followed by a strong performance against Straits. Girls ECiM team A won their first game, but Girls EciM Team B were narrowly defeated. Beaconhouse had a strong girls team and our A team were unlucky to not beat them losing 22-18. The boys closed out the tournament with a win over Beaconhouse and winning the cup. Girls team B managed to beat a tired Team A.

Special thanks goes to the referees who were provided to us by the Negeri Sembilan Basketball Association.

Final standings:

  • ECiM U18 Boys: 1st place
  • ECiM U18 Girls Team B: 2nd place
  • ECiM U18 Girls Team A: 3rd place

Overall, the tournament showcased strong performances from ECiM's teams, with the boys emerging as champions and the girls securing respectable finishes.

Squash Success!

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Congratulations to Haneesha, Year 11 Crawfurd, who competed in the  WCE National Junior Championship last week. We are extremely proud to announce that Haneesha finished 7th placing overall in Malaysia for the girls under 17 category.

Epsom Competes in the Mini FOBISIA Games

At the end of February, a group of 37 students from across our Prep and Senior Schools represented ECiM at the Mini FOBISIA Games held at KTJ last week. This two day celebration of sport had been earmarked as a key training opportunity for the U11 and U13 squads that are attending the Friendly Games in Thailand later this year. Teams have been working hard, since the start of January, in CCA’s and extra training sessions, to build up their skills and knowledge to be able to compete at a higher level.

The U11’s were ably supported by Mr Eyton-Jones, Miss Duck and Miss Dayang whilst Miss Pleshivtseva and Mr Fidel took charge of the U13’s. Epsom teams competed against students from schools including King Henry 8th, ELC, Sri KDU, St Christopher’s Penang and the hosts KTJ.

Our students were brave and tenacious throughout the weekend battling the hot conditions and the talented opponents in Athletics, Football, Swimming with the U11’s playing T-ball and U13’s playing Basketball. For many this was their first experience of a large multisport event and for the U13’s it was their first Basketball outing of the year.

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Huge congratulations to the competitors for their persistence and endeavor. I’d also like to thank our committed staff who ensured that everything was on track and maintaining high spirits within the teams.

U11 Results
Athletics - 9 Gold, 9 Silver, 2 Bronze
Swimming -  3 Gold, 6 Gold, 3 Bronze  (4th overall)
Tee Ball - 3rd
Football - Boys 1st / Girls 2nd

U13 Results
Athletics - 3rd overall
Swimming -  Boys 2 Bronze, 2 Silver / Girls 2 Gold,3 Silver and 4 Bronze  (4th overall)
Basketball- Girls 3rd / Boys 2nd
Football - Boys 4th / Girls 3rd 

Happy Friday All!

Malaysia Schools Debate Competition

In today's interconnected world, the ability to engage in debate and communicate effectively in multiple languages is increasingly valued. Debating, a skill that fosters critical thinking, persuasive communication, and teamwork, intersects seamlessly with bilingualism, offering individuals a plethora of opportunities for personal and intellectual growth. Recent successes in Mandarin debate at Epsom College underscore the importance of nurturing these dual abilities.

Debating serves as a crucible for honing essential skills vital for success in various facets of life. It encourages participants to research, analyse, and articulate complex ideas coherently. Through structured argumentation and rebuttal, debaters learn to think on their feet, develop logical reasoning, and cultivate confidence in public speaking. Moreover, the collaborative nature of debating fosters teamwork, empathy, and respect for differing perspectives. These skills are not only essential for academic excellence but also for professional success and civic engagement.

Simultaneously, being bilingual amplifies these benefits manifold. Language is the conduit through which ideas are conveyed, and proficiency in multiple languages expands one's cognitive horizons, enhances intercultural understanding, and facilitates effective communication in diverse contexts. Bilingual individuals possess a unique advantage in today's globalised world, where multicultural interactions are commonplace. They can navigate linguistic and cultural barriers with ease, fostering connections, fostering understanding, and seizing opportunities across borders.

The recent achievements of the Epsom Mandarin Debate Team exemplify the symbiotic relationship between debating and bilingualism. Winning the first match and securing two Best Debater titles in a single match not only exemplify the team's prowess but also highlight the immense value of bilingual proficiency in competitive arenas. Our Epsom debaters Yuxuan, Chenhe, Yilai, Zishuo, Wenhao, and Linziyu, spanning various year levels, epitomise the dedication and talent required to excel in debating while embracing bilingualism.

We look forward to the next round!

Academic Society Talks

Epsom Celebrates World Book Week

This week we celebrated World Book Week with a Wonka Chocolate Factory theme - it was great fun as you can see from our pictures!!

Special thanks to our Prep School team for their work on this and of course to our ever supportive parents who work tirelessly to make our events so special!

Epsom's Book Week Fashion Parade

As part of our Book Week celebrations, staff and students dressed up as their favourite book characters…Can you spot anyone you know?...

So, Dear Reader,

Thank you for reading our Epsom Friday Flyer and we wish you all the very best for a restful weekend.

Happy Friday from us all at Epsom.

🙂

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