Letter from Head of School at the beginning of academic year 2017-2018

Hanoi, September 5th, 2017

Dear Olympians,

Going back to this day 10 years ago, September 5th, 2007 was the first school opening day of Dream House Primary & Middle school – the origin of today’s Olympia.

Little did the founding members of the school who wished to create a “Dream House” to nurture the minds and hearts and souls of kids, so that they would grow up and live with success and happiness, know back then what started out as just their little dream has, continuously and gradually over the past ten years, found its way to the dreams of others – dreams of teachers who dream to make lasting impacts on students; of staff who dream to deliver the best care to young kids; of parents who dream for their children to become not only great students but, also and most importantly, good people with knowledge and skills and characters; of thousand students who have stepped into and graduated from Olympia, dreaming to become great teachers, lawyers, doctors, singers, scientists, journalists and so on – literally, dreams in all sorts of shapes and scales that somehow have come together to grow and be realized together.

Little did we all know back then that our one house has become THE house, connecting dreams across time and space and generations. For that, no better theme would fit this year – this 10th birthday of Olympia – other than these two simple words: Connecting Dreams.

This school year marks a strong step of maturity within the Olympia community of teachers and educators not only in academic curriculum and teaching pedagogy but also in student life education. We have completed the benchmark of our entire STEM and English curriculum to the US curriculum to create a level playing field with international schools, both in Vietnam and overseas, while still maintaining unique values of Vietnam through our interdisciplinary teaching of Vietnamese, Literature and Social Studies.

We have solidified our teaching of ethics, life, career and professional skills into what we now, with pride and passion, call LiFE – Learning in Fostering Environments. For us, education is not simply preparing for life, but education is LiFE itself. Despite its new name, the teaching philosophy and practice of LiFE were laid in the cornerstone that built Olympia and have been deeply embedded in each and every step along our way. This year the systemization of the LiFE curriculum ensures its impacts can be – and will be – stretched across our K-12 system, deeply reaching into every lesson, every teacher and, eventually, every student.

This academic year of 2017-2018 may witness the birth of many new things in our school – a new building for primary school, a new playground, a new service machine, new courses as well as new faces – our dream is still an old dream that stays forever alive. It is that very old dream of Education for Life that has inspired the minds and warmed the hearts of every Olympian. It is that very old dream that will keep us attached to this noble and humbling path called Education.

On behalf of The Olympia Schools, I wish everyone – students, students’ parents, alumni, teachers, staff and members of the extended Olympia’s community – a year of passion, dedication, successes and happiness. Let us join hands in connecting the dreams of all in this endearing community and certainly beyond to create one year packed with meanings and impacts, so that whenever we look back upon this year – as well as the past 10 years or the next 10 years and definitely more – we can proudly call Olympia… our home.

And remember this: Once an Olympian, forever Olympian.

Olympia is Home. Connecting Dreams.

With love,

Pham Thi Minh An

Head of School