The story of Discovery Bay International School (DBIS) is synonymous with the story of Discovery Bay itself.
In the early 1980’s, the site that has now blossomed into the Discovery Bay community of today, was owned by The Hong Kong Resort Company (HKRI). The owners of HKRI, The Cha family, showed extraordinary vision in deciding to build a community on Lantau Island. To support their plans for the development they identified the need for a high quality international school that would serve the requirements of the community.
In December of 1982 the first residents of Discovery Bay moved in. The school was founded a month later in January 1983 and the story of DBIS had begun. Initially the school was located in a room at the Discovery Bay Residents Club. The three students, Ann & Jean Evans and Edda Hansen, were taught by Miss. Anne-Marie Naughton and the then school Principal Mrs. Wendy MacCallum. They were supported in developing the school by Ms. Connie Ting who remains the school’s Office Manager to this day.
By the start of the academic year in September 1983 student numbers had increased dramatically and phase one of the current site was complete. The students were able to move into their state of the art school building, marking an exciting milestone in the school's development. A number of factors that would characterise DBIS throughout its history became evident at this time. Firstly, DBIS had enrolled 69 students coming from a range of home countries. The diversity of student backgrounds has been a strength of the school throughout our history. We currently educate students from over 40 different home countries. In addition to this, the children benefited from specialist teachers in Mandarin, P.E. and Music. The schools vision for ensuring our students receive an holistic education can be tracked to our early beginnings. Furthermore, these developments also attracted excellent staff who gave the school early stability. At this time and throughout the school's history teachers, students and families alike have quickly developed a close connection to DBIS and this has helped build the community spirit that our students benefit from.
The school continued to grow in a number of ways over the proceeding years. Miss Anne-Marie Naughton became the second Principal of the school in 1986. The building of phases two, three, four and five of the main campus was completed, culminating with the opening of the Globe Theatre on our 10th anniversary in January 1993. More importantly however, we were then educating 572 students. Discovery Bay had become a picturesque, close knit, multi-cultural community that the school reflected completely. Our classrooms were generously resourced with computers being introduced as early as 1985. The early use of cutting-edge technology for the benefit of the students being another feature of the school’s rich history.
As the years went by the school continued to establish itself as a leading provider of Early Years and Primary education in Hong Kong. Miss Anne-Marie Naughton worked tirelessly with her Senior Leadership Team, teachers and students to develop the school and its educational provision. In 2005, after 23 years of service Miss Naughton retired. Her contribution to the school had been immeasurable and she will always be a prominent person in the history of the school.
The following year Mr. Grant Ramsay took charge of the school becoming the school’s third Principal. The next chapter began in a similar vein to the previous developments of the school. Two state of the art buildings were built in 2008 and 2012 respectively. First the Discovery Centre and latterly the main Secondary School building. As Discovery Bay continued to grow the need for high quality Secondary School provision became evident. Therefore, Discovery Bay International School grew this area progressively. In 2008 we opened the doors to the first cohort of year 7 students. By August 2013 we had become a through school educating students from Nursery to Year 11.
In June 2014 Mr. Grant Ramsay retired from his post and Mr. Paul Tough became the Head of School. With the Secondary School now established and the student numbers on the increase we are now in an exciting new stage of development. The school has a long history of being a forerunner in educational excellence and ensuring the individual student experiences we offer combine cutting edge pedagogy with established, robust educational practices. This is indeed an exciting time for DBIS as we look to further develop our community focused school to ensure the students are prepared for the exciting, international lives they have ahead of them.