Ryan Li, Head of Middle School and Deputy Head of Secondary School: Staying onthe Frontline of Teaching and Learning, Building a School with Care and Support

“I wish to create a school with care and support, with students from different cultures and backgrounds can have an all-round development in an international school environment. They are unique individuals, and it is the school’s responsibility to provide the care and support they need to continue to shine and progress the areas they excel in, and to encourage them to experiment in the areas they do not. In short, I idea of a dream school is a place where every student can become the better self!” Principal Ryan Li said with confidence about the Secondary School Division he will be helping to lead.

With 12 years of experience in teaching chemistry, Principal Ryan Li has been able to raise many students with his solid teaching skills, rich teaching experience and outstanding teaching ability; he has also received numerous accolades, being an outstanding instructor in many international chemistry competitions and winning many district-level teacher awards. Even when he was busy with school management as Division Head, he still enjoyed teaching and spending time with his students. As the Division Head, he has been involved in school management for over seven years and has made an outstanding contribution to the steady development of the school, building a comprehensive international curriculum, and creating a humanistic campus.

Ryan Li

Head of Middle School and

Deputy Head of Senior School

Principal Ryan Li was formerly the Deputy Head of Secondary School and Head of Middle School at Chengdu Longquanyi Beanstalk School and Head of the International Division of the Chengdu Experimental Foreign Languages School of Chengdu Virsend Group. He has over 10 years of first-class teaching experience in the international curriculum and is familiar with the IB, AP, and A-Level curriculums. He has strong curriculum development skills and school management experience.

Besides, he always puts the growth of students and teachers as his top priority. He is a personable and appealing person with an open mind and a broad vision, who is able to communicate and cooperate effectively in a cross-cultural environment. He has a philosophy, approach, and effectiveness in systematising the student care system, fostering student autonomy and coordination, promoting teacher development, optimising the assessment system, and improving home-school co-education.

Seeing me as an elder brother is the greatest recognition from my students

In the classroom, the students, each with a bottle of sparkling drink, were excitedly measuring how much gas was in the bottle, while Division Head Ryan Li looked on with a smile on his face as he watched them flexibly manipulate the experimental equipment and find the answer quickly. This is a general examination in the Primary G6 General Science course, which is designed to test students’ ability to use scientific thinking to solve real-life problems, including the ability to extract scientific research questions from real-life problems, set variables and collect and process data. Such teaching and academic assessment is the norm in Ryan Li’s classes.

After learning about Ecosystem, students were excited to make their own miniature ecological models and, under the guidance of Division Head Ryan Li, to try to adjust a part of the ecosystem that had already reached equilibrium and to observe and record the changes in the whole ecosystem. Division Head Ryan Li also introduced the importance of teamwork and resources, asking students to compare and analyse the commonalities between their own classroom groups and the ecosystem, and to consider what factors are needed for a successful classroom group, in order to compare and contrast how to create a healthy ecosystem. These highly integrated theoretical and practical sessions were well received by the students, teaching them science, and cultivated their overall ability.

His teaching has encouraged children who hated chemistry to fall in love with it and grow to be the PhD chemists they are today; it has helped students who were complacent about their theoretical excellence to see their lack of practical problem-solving skills and become truly well-rounded students; and it has helped students who love chemistry but are not proficient in English to work on their English skills and eventually achieve a full mark in AP Chemistry!

The success of the course stems from both its practicality and the scientific nature of its planning. In the teaching and learning process, Division Head Ryan Li extensively applies differentiation, both for the top students and for the worst, to reinforce the foundations and emphasise study skills and literacy, ensuring that each student receives a quality education that is appropriate for him or her on multiple levels. At the same time, he also works hard to build a diverse assessment system. Teachers are encouraged to use interesting, varied, and effective assessment methods to help each student clearly see their strengths, weaknesses, and avenues for improvement in each area.

“When considering class arrangements, I take into account not only the subject level and English level of the students, but also their nationality and gender ratio, and I want the students to feel that there is equity when they enter the group. In addition, I will make sure that the essence of the subject is given priority in the differentiation of each subject, so that students do not fail to learn the subject because their English is not good enough. Secondly, as a lifelong learner, I always take a dynamic view of a student’s status, e.g., whenever I think about extensional programmes for the top students, I also think about supporting those in need, because every student is developing and changing and deserves care and support! “

For many years, he has been seen as an elder brother by his students, and this is especially rewarding for him, because this acknowledges all the efforts he has made in teaching. “I hope I can always stay on the front line of teaching because of this! “

Respect, inspire, achieve, innovate,be a leader by example

Not only the students, but also the teachers are happy to communicate with Ryan Li when they encounter difficulties. His patience and approachability, and his wisdom in dealing with student problems often enlightens teachers who are troubled. “My role as a school administrator is to respect, understand and encourage teachers in their growth process, so that they can see their potential and value! “

In the face of the curriculum reform, Ryan Li has continued to encourage teachers to make bold changes to the way they teach in the classroom. He organised and developed the integrated curriculum, which is a deep integration of curriculum concepts across the course connection, cross-curricular coupling, course content, teaching methods and academic assessment, and has been well received by students. Taking the above-mentioned Liberal Studies as an example, Ryan Li has led the team to develop an integrated curriculum that focuses on a number of subject areas, highlighting subject skills and literacy, and the use of subject vocabulary, laying a solid foundation for students to study in depth.

In addition, Division Head Ryan Li has developed a rigorous design for the secondary school curriculum and the overall development of the school. In his plan, the secondary curriculum is comprehensive, with a full range of subjects and sufficient depth and breadth of content to allow students to fully explore and make the best possible choices when the pathway is open.

In Principal Ryan Li’s education philosophy, the development of quality courses, the provision of university counselling, attention to teacher development, enrichment of student activities, the systematisation of student care, the optimisation of the assessment system for teachers and students, the maintenance of high-frequency communication with parents, and the building of a home-school community, these are all aspects that need to be addressed at the same time, and this is the only way that a school can achieve sustainable development.

“The school’s commitment to quality international education, the highly qualified team of Chinese and foreign teachers, the pursuit of high-quality teaching and learning, and the uncompromising development of an integrated curriculum are the main reasons why I was attracted to join the school. In addition, what attracted me to Dipont KCS Chengdu was the in-depth practice of the House System on campus after it was introduced to China, which is the kind of international education I am looking for. “

We can say that this is a two-way choice made by the school and Division Head Ryan Li, whose rich school management experience, first-class teaching standards and strong curriculum development capabilities will be closely linked and resonate with KCS Chengdu, and we look forward to a new chapter of development and a new journey for KCS Chengdu with his leadership.