I still find it very hard to believe that this will be the last newsletter I write for English International School Moscow West. Since the moment I arrived at the school six years ago, and all the way through until now, I have witnessed how special our school is. It has been a wonderful journey working at a school that has grown and developed each and every day. This would not have been possible without the amazing students, parents and teachers who have worked so hard to ensure EIS West is the best school it can possibly be.

This year has been a very different year for everyone and it has meant that we have all had to change and adjust the way we live, teach and learn. Since our shift at the end of March, to E learning, we have faced some of our biggest challenges yet. However, with the support of you, as parents and the hard work of all of the teachers, we have been able to continue to provide learning for everyone. I am not saying it was without challenges but as a community we worked to overcome the difficulties we faced.

If we look back over this year, (I know September the 1st seems so long ago) we started with our bell ringing ceremony and in what felt like just days, we quickly arrived at Halloween where yet again our amazing PTA transformed the school into a pumpkin paradise, providing the perfect opportunity for us to dress up and come together as a community to showcase our creativity with the costume parade.

As the winter months started, we raised over 70,000 rubles for Spransky Children’s Hospital and were able to help so many children that needed that extra special gift at Christmas time. We then shared just how talented all of our children are with our winter concert (some of the songs are still in my head now).

Term two saw our ski lessons start again, despite a lack of snow, and then we had another chance to dress up and celebrate our love of literature from all over the world, with Book Day. A celebration that I will truly miss, as it is one of my favourite traditions in Russia, is saying goodbye to winter and hello to spring by burning our Maslenitsa doll. This is always an opportunity to review the past, then look forward and set intentions for the season ahead.

Unexpectedly, the season brought a worldwide pandemic but not even this could not stop us from learning, showing how resilient and committed we are as a school community. After moving our classes online, the learning continued with some inspiring themed weeks. ‘Well-being’ week and ‘EIS has talent’ are ones that shine for me, as they truly reflected how talented and caring the children of EIS West are.

As the year comes to an end (online lesson will take place on Monday 29th and then until Tuesday 30th until 13:00), I want to take this opportunity to thank each and every family for the support, passion and dedication over not only the past year but also from the start of my time at EIS West. It has not been an easy year for schools all over the world but I am so proud of the children of EIS and so thankful for how supportive you have all been over the last six years - thank you!

I wish you all a wonderful Summer holiday and I am sure you will welcome the new Head of School Ms. Amanda Dickson in September.

Best Wishes,

Ryan Hannah