We Are Wellington | Starting a new life in Hangzhou

At Wellington College International Hangzhou, we aspire to create a caring, international community that develops well-rounded individuals with strong values and the skills and identity to thrive within an ever-changing world. In fact, this is our vision statement. Community is at the centre of all we do at Wellington, and we continuously strive to work together with our parents, staff and pupils to develop that strong sense of community that makes international schools unique. In our founding academic year, we have been joined by passionate families who share our vision. In this series of ‘We Are Wellington’ articles we aim to tell the stories of those families and highlight the special contributions they make to our community.

Our first article in the series is from the parents of Margaux (Year 5) and Sacha (Year1), where they share their experience of moving to and living in Hangzhou and joining Wellington for the founding year.

Relocating from Shanghai to Hangzhou

We are a French and Chinese family. Both children are French. Margaux is 9 and Sacha is 5. We have been living in China most of the past decade, besides a couple of years in France. We moved from Shanghai to Hangzhou and started living in Hangzhou in the summer of 2018. It was just a 200-kilometres move for us parents, but a big step for the children, as they were in French schools in Shanghai. They had to jump from their well-balanced life – with French and Chinese education – into a new world and a new language.

Joining Wellington in the founding year

We chose to join Wellington as founding parents because of the excellent reputation and deep educational roots of the school. We were obviously amazed by the campus on our first visits and had no doubt Wellington was going to settle perfectly well in Hangzhou. Also, the careful attention we always received when we visited was very appreciated.

Our children have been responding very well to their new language and curriculum. The small-sized classes are a great opportunity for them to get the support they need. Extra activities are plenty and the houses are a new way for them to grow in a stimulating environment.

We often joke how we prepped our kids for Wellington College by having them watch and read the Harry Potter series. It created a funny back story to our family adventure in Hangzhou.

Participating into the community events

We were touched by the tree lighting ceremony and the children’s performances last Christmas. They worked hard and gave their best.

We also have a special memory of the award ceremony after Sports Day in October 2018. Sacha received a medal for Best Integrity given by Carlton Palmer. That meant the world to him. It was an immense day. Seeing a nice picture of Margaux from that Sports Day on the walls at Wellington is still a great joy.

Matching the Identity

We are witnessing a clear and central ambition to help each child rise and develop his or her own personality. For us, that makes Wellington College stand out.

As parents, it is sometimes difficult to get feedback from young kids about their day at school. They could have entirely different ways to behave than at home, and we don’t usually speak English to them, as we prefer to use our native tongues. But we can see them rushing to prepare every morning, getting their uniform in order, knotting their ties and hurrying to the bus stop. It tells us a lot.

If you would like to join the Wellington community, no matter whether you are planning on living to Hangzhou or you are already based in Hangzhou, or if you would like to learn more about the Wellington Values and Identities, you can arrange an on-site visit by clicking HERE. Our admissions team are on stand-by to host you for a personalised campus tour and to help you discover what makes Wellington special.