When their son came skipping out of his admissions interview, it confirmed to Eric Yee and Jenny Luong that they had found the right place for their family at Stamford American School.
Like most parents in Hong Kong, Eric and Jenny had been doing the rounds of applications and information sessions as their eldest son Lachlan, now five, reached school age. They were immediately impressed by Stamford American School Hong Kong when they attended one of the information sessions. And then the seamless application process sealed the deal.
Lachlan is now happily ensconced in Stamford’s bilingual Pre-Primary class. Jenny, who works for Morgan Stanley, says they are thrilled with how well he has settled in.
“It’s been just over a month and there hasn’t been a day that he’s not excited about getting on the bus to go to school,” she says. “We’ve also seen him at school three times and he’s never once asked to go home with us. He happily waves goodbye to us – which is a bit sad for us as parents but a good sign that he’s enjoying school!”
A stress-free application process
The family, who arrived in Hong Kong more than 10 years ago for work, had quite specific ideas about what they were looking for in a school. Eric was born and raised in the United States and is of Chinese-German descent. Jenny was born and raised in Australia and is of Vietnamese-Chinese heritage.
They wanted a school that focussed on developing Lachlan holistically beyond academic achievement, facilitated inquiry-based learning, offered a bilingual English-Mandarin program, and provided a supportive community for parents.
Eric, who works for LinkedIn, said the family heard about Stamford through friends and decided to attend an information session.
“This is where we met Malcolm Kay the Superintendent; he delivered an intimate briefing about the school’s philosophy, vision, and teaching methods, including learning continuum assessments,” Eric said. “He also explained the school’s non-selective approach to admissions, which we didn’t even know existed in a Hong Kong international school, as well as the campus design, approach to technology and even the school’s parent café.
“We found it all refreshing, innovative, modern and engaging, so we progressed with an application for our son and met Zita from Admissions. She was responsive, helpful and personable throughout the entire process. When our son was accepted and we brought him in for the assessment, he came out of that meeting skipping. We knew then the decision to send him to Stamford was right for us. Zita being there giving our son a Stamford bear as a welcome present and seeing our son smile was an added bonus!”
Family at the foundation
With younger son Hudson, 3, and newborn Kellen, Eric and Jenny have found the community aspect of the school a pleasing feature of life at Stamford.
“Stamford is a new school and the sense of community is a work in progress,” Jenny said. “There have been a myriad of school events and regular communications from the school have been very informative thus far.
“Lachlan is our eldest son so we don’t have any experience to compare what we’re going through with. In terms of us as parents navigating his transition to school though, we couldn’t be more pleased with how responsive and helpful the school and especially his teacher have been with us and all our questions.”