• Large, purpose-built campus
• Direct link to MTR station
Opened just over 10 years ago in 2006, Renaissance College Hong Kong (RCHK) has a modern and purpose-built campus in the New Territories. This is a large school with more than 2,000 students but thanks to its greenery, central courtyard, and splashes of colour it feels warm and welcoming.
Located in Ma On Shan, this all-through school is also well-connected to public transport. The school is so easily accessible that it has its own direct underpass to the Tai Shui Hang MTR station, which means that students can safely and quickly walk to and from the train platform – and many of them do.
RCHK is surrounded by high rises and mountains, and there are even some distant views of the sea. Although it’s a relatively new school, it feels part of the community here – not least because many students live in the neighbouring apartment blocks.
Read our review of RCHK here.
• Schools within a school model
• Dedicated facilities for primary and secondary students
• Renovated Mandarin classrooms and Red Door Centre for ICT
While RCHK doesn’t dazzle with the sleek design of some new schools in Hong Kong, it does feel functional, familiar and educational. We arrived at RCHK during one of the school’s busiest times – lunch break. While the primary children were still in class, the secondary students were queuing for lunch in the large modern canteen (where we saw a wide variety of hot and cold healthy dishes), chatting over a hot drink in the café, meeting friends on one of the many benches, or running around the sports courts. We sensed a strong community atmosphere here, and a sense of space and calm. For a school with more than 2,000 students, that can be hard to achieve.
As RCHK says,
“It may not look or feel like we have 2,100 students as the campus is not overcrowded, but that’s because we have a staggered timetable and space.”
RCHK operates two schools within a school. The primary and secondary school have dedicated buildings and separate timetables. They do, however, share some specialist facilities including the swimming pool, sports pitch, canteen, central courtyard, medical centre with full-time nurse, and main hall.
Although the primary and secondary schools operate independently for most of the school day, they do come together for house events. The large logos of the four houses are a focal point of the school, and every student is given a house colour t-shirt to wear as part of their PE kit. Students who are members of any of the school’s sports teams are given the “honour” of wearing a black PE top.
Both the primary and secondary buildings are home to classrooms, multi-purpose rooms for specialist subjects such as art, science, music and technology. Like any top tier school, RCHK has well-equipped specialist rooms that are designed for IGCSE and IBDP learning – and there are plenty of flexible learning spaces in all year groups to support the IB’s inquiry-led learning.
All classrooms have age-appropriate furniture, are well-lit, and equipped with enough learning resources without feeling cluttered. The muted tones help to create a calm learning environment, and the displays of student work on the walls and in the corridors are motivating and celebratory.
Each school has its own library. The primary library is furnished with beanbags and a lovely bunkbed that’s used by the younger students for reading time; the secondary library is next to a dedicated ‘study lounge’ for DP students.
There’s also an impressive theatre with professional lighting, where students have staged plays ranging from Footloose to Macbeth. Sports facilities include two rooftop sports pitches, a recently acquired football pitch, and an indoor swimming pool.
The campus has been updated but not expanded, including a large multipurpose room that can be used as a drama space, exhibition space, exam hall or gym. There’s also a new dedicated facility for the Learning Enhancement Team, where students with special educational needs can have 1:1 lessons in addition to mainstream classes. And the recently renovated Mandarin classrooms really immerse the students in the language and culture. A highlight of this all-Mac school has to be the Red Door Centre – a makerspace with robotics kits, film equipment, a green screen, and a film editing suite.
“We have invested in new facilities to provide the very best learning environment for our students. We’re not increasing the numbers, and not one penny spent has come from fees. It’s all been funded by the non-refundable building levy and nomination rights, which always go into the upkeep of the school. It’s all very transparent.”
There are plenty of areas for students to study and play outside, including rooftop pitches on both the primary and secondary buildings. For the primary students, there’s also an outdoor play area with a small climbing wall and play equipment, and another outdoor area with a butterfly garden, sandpit, and a shed filled with wooden building blocks. As the school says, it is “using very inch” of the campus.
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