Milestones in the History of Bali International School 1985-2009
In September 1985, the Yayasan Bali International School, a legal non-profit democratic foundation, wholly paid for and run by the parents and charged by the Indonesian Minister of Education and Culture with educating expatriate children, opened its doors for the first time. The initial roll was eight primary students. The teaching and administrative honours belonged to a Canadian couple, Bill and Gundie Robertson. Ray Gardiner, Kamal Kaul, Jon Zurcher, Barbara Bush, Timothy Watts, Linda O’Brien and Kristina Melcher deserve special recognition for their tireless contributions. The original site of the school was and remains Banjar Taman in Sanur Village, South Bali. Sanur was famous for the high concentration of the Brahmana or priestly caste and a renowned centre of traditional Balinese learning including kekawinan poetry.
By 1992, when Bill Robertson retired, the roll was just over 150 elementary school students from 26 countries. While most came from North America, Europe and Australia, they were joined by a rainbow of passports including Japanese, Korean, Mexican and Peruvian students. It should also be noted that many of the children were dual nationals, often with an Indonesian parent.
After Bill Robertson’s departure, the current school board hired an American principal, Patrick van Kampen. After Patrick’s departure, Diane Lutman was appointed as acting principal.
From 1993 to 2001, Mr. Murray Vosper, from New Zealand was the school principal. The first two years of his tenure were spent firmly establishing the school’s infrastructure and new identity. One of the most noteworthy developments was that of the music and drama department. A new music teacher, Phil Seaton, played a particularly important role in the lives of the children through the introduction of numerous successful musical performances. Share Time, on Friday afternoons, gave students, teachers and parents the opportunity to perform and share their work with parents while gaining valuable experience performing before audiences.
In 1994, the decision was made to expand the school into the upper grades to meet the demands of an expanding student body. Thus, grades 7 and 8 were added in 1995, grade 9 in 1996, and grade 10 in 1997.
In 1995, Bali International School gained accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).
In 1999, a new Board of Directors took a particularly dynamic role in establishing the policies and procedures of the school to strengthen the school as an institution. They also undertook the professional development of the school’s first strategic plan. During this same period, steps were taken for the implementation of the International Baccalaureate’s MYP, Middle Years Programme, resulting in authorisation for grades 6 to 10 in 2000.
In 2001-2002, Dr. Jorge Nelson was appointed the Director/Secondary Principal and Mrs. Jeanie Forde the PS-Grade 8 Principal. The school expanded to include grade 11. The school undertook the WASC self-study, and accreditation was extended to 2005.
In 2002-2003 the school roll was over 250 students. The school administration expanded to include a part time High School Principal, Patrick Ritter, and the Grade 12 programme was implemented.
Due to a number of factors including the tragic October 12 bombing, the school roll fell to just over 200 students. The Board of Directors appointed Jeanie Forde as BIS Director for 2003-2004.
A significant milestone was achieved during the 2003-2004 school year when BIS received recognition as an IB world school, authorised by IBO for MYP, IB Diploma and being accepted as a PYP candidate.
The highlights of the 2004-2005 school year included achieving IB world status for PYP, MYP and IB Diploma along with the opening of the 25-metre swimming pool.
In 2005-2006 First International Baccalaureate Diploma graduates. New strategic plan drafted. Term 1 started with 265 students.
In 2006-2007 School sports facility upgraded to include covered multi-purpose courts; the building of four additional rooms (three classrooms and one room for library expansion) to accommodate the anticipated 320 plus students for August 2007; land leases secured through to 2021; initiated dual accreditation process WASC/CIS; student roll over 280 students and Dr. Hana Kanan was appointed Director commencing August 2007.
In 2008-2009, Chris Akin was appointed Director. The school starts with a school roll of over 330 students. Chris was the energy behind the 25th Jubilee Celebrations that happened in September 2011. Our families enjoyed a range of activities including a golf tournament, a gala ball and a world-record breaking Pot Luck event with 597 plates!
Oscar Nilsson joined the BIS team as Head of School in the 2012-2013 academic year.