Dipont A Level & IB Centre at Nanjing Foreign Language School

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About the Host School

The School was founded by the first premier of the People's Republic of China's, Mr Zhou Enlai, in 1963. There are approximately 4,000 students, ranging from 12 to 19 years old.

NFLS advocates the spirit of seeking the truth, scaling the heights, being erudite and modest. It also emphasizes teaching that is 'strict, careful, creative and flexible'. The educational target of NFLS is to produce high quality talented students who are ambitious, patriotic, ethical and broad-minded. These students are also civilized, erudite, creative, proficient in certain fields and experts at foreign languages; integrating both knowledge and practice using a healthy body and a sharp mind. In brief, NFLS aims at producing international multi-talented graduates who have a good command of foreign languages with a wide knowledge of science and art, and powerful abilities to integrate these subjects.

Situated on 2 campuses, the main campus moved to new premises in 2008 and accommodates approximately 3400 students. The older 1912 campus accommodates approximately 700 students, including the Cambridge A-Level Centre. Facilities are modern, with data projectors and internet & networking facilities in every room. Our laboratories are first-class and classrooms are bright and airy with air-conditioning. Both campuses have excellent sporting facilities, including artificial running tracks and playing courts, gymnasiums and basketball courts. We are close to transport and located near the centre of the bright, vibrant culture of Nanjing City.

Many acknowledge NFLS as the Premier High School in Nanjing. Students must apply through a lottery process in order to be able to sit for the entrance exam. Approximately 700 students per year are admitted to Junior 1 grade from an initial applicant pool of over 4000. Students are active in all aspects of high school community life. Approximately 500 students live on campus as boarders.

Every year, top universities in China and around the world admit large numbers of our students. In recent years, Nanjing Foreign Language School has maintained an extremely high rate of admission rate in the National Matriculation Tests, and ranked as the first in Jiangsu Province successively for several years. Nanjing Foreign Language School has educated about 200 diplomats for China, seven of whom act as Ambassadors to other countries, eight as general consulates and dozens of whom work for the Party and are State Leaders. Many more graduates of NFLS hold leading positions in government. In addition, significant numbers of graduates have become famous experts or scholars.

About the A Level & IB Centre

NFLS A Level Centre was opened in 2006 and has offered the IB Diploma from 2012.  NFLS also offers IGCSE courses in the first year of what is a three-year programme, leading to successful completion of CIE A levels. NFLS currently has 560 students enrolled, supported by 30 foreign teaching staff, 15 Chinese staff who work as tutors and classroom teachers, a large college counseling department and a fully qualified librarian. Education provision is also assisted with the help of a full complement of Chinese office staff and 2 lab technicians.

Students are generally highly motivated, well behaved, and responsive when encouraged.

 NFLS has fully equipped labs – 2 for Chemistry, 2 for Physics and 1 for Biology (all with well resourced prep rooms). We have a fully equipped ICT lab, a lecture theatre, Art room and library. All classrooms have data projectors and internet connections. There are 15 standard classrooms and plenty of office space. NFLS runs a variety of clubs and sporting activities, with help from the host school. NFLS students organize their own thriving and successful Students’ Union, which is very proactive in organizing and assisting with clubs, activities and a wide variety of events. 

Key benefits include working with a great team of talented foreign and Chinese staff. Students are very amenable, intelligent and cooperative. Nanjing itself is a very livable city, not with the bright lights of Shanghai, but pleasant with interesting, historical sights and is easy to get around. It is hot and humid in summer and rather cold in winter. 

In terms of challenges, hours can be long and expectations are high. Our Chinese students have a thirst for knowledge and can be very exam-orientated, requiring a great deal of preparation from teachers…. and a lot of associated marking!


Teachers have a good standard of off-campus accommodation. Most teachers choose to live close to the school or towards the eastern edge of the city. Our Centre Principal, for example, has a large, comfortable apartment of 196 sqm on the eastern edge of the city. It is very comfortable, but it can take up to 40 minutes to get to work or back home. The neighbourhood is very nice with a full range of amenities and dancing in the corner park every night.

The more you are willing to be a part of the community, the more you will enjoy this place. People are friendly and helpful in the extreme. There is a quality gym and 50m indoor pool nearby and the school is closeto the city centre. Busses stop at the door and taxis are plentiful and cheap.

The city's history is diverse and fascinating. There are a wide range of museums and historical sites dating back to the Ming dynasty. Further information can be found at:


Teacher Case Study

Isobel Bartz, Music and Theory of Knowledge

I was born in Japan and grew up in Southeast Asia during my father’s career as a foreign service officer in the U.S. State Department. During this period, I attended private schools and Department of Defense schools in Burma (Myanmar), Australia and Korea so in a sense I am also a product of international education. 

I started singing at the age of three and always played piano and listened to music. Wanting to be a trained singer and musician, I became a voice major at the University of Maryland and went on to complete a Doctorate of Musical Arts at UNC-Greensboro in North Carolina in 2002. I later taught at two colleges and ran a private piano and vocal studio out of my home. 

Seeking an opportunity to teach overseas, my first position was teaching K-12 music at QSI in Kyiv, Ukraine. I later taught PYP music in the UK before coming to Nanjing to teach DP Music at NFLS IB Centre in Nanjing, China. 

I have multiple roles at NFLS IB Centre: teaching Diploma 1 and 2 Music, Theory of Knowledge, general Music to Pre-IB and Pre-AL (Senior 1) students and supervising the Extended Essay, CAS activities and all extra-curricular music events. Throughout the school year, students prepare for and participate in two NFLS Arts Festivals, the Drama Festival, school-wide talent shows, assemblies and other concerts. 

I have also established the music curriculum and resourced the program; buying equipment, books and sourcing music software applications for student use. 

Serving in such a variety of capacities keeps the job interesting. Especially witnessing the creative energy the students demonstrate in directing, composing and playing music. By offering music, students learn a variety of skills that will undoubtedly serve them in other areas of their life such as self-discipline, stage presentation and self-confidence.

There are several benefits to working here at the NFLS IB Centre. First, our Centre Principal is very enthusiastic and supportive toward the Arts, secondly, the students’ aptitude and hunger for artistic expression is always gratifying and third, the Centre has supported purchasing the instruments and other equipment needed in order to sustain and grow the Arts Centre here at NFLS. 

I have a comfortable apartment and some very nice friends here. For those of us who crave comfort food, there are also places to get a plate of spaghetti or a burger if you want it! Being a travel bug, I have also been able to visit many of the places I had wanted to see in China such as Shanghai, X’ian, Harbin, Yellow Mountain, Wuxi, Suzhou and Guilin. 

Successful Dipont teachers need to come with prior overseas experience and the expectation that they will be stretched and challenged. A sense of independence is also very helpful as well as an interest in the culture of China. 

It is very helpful to know Mandarin but a foreigner can manage without it. This past weekend I went on a contemporary art field trip to Shanghai’s M50 galleries and the Old Power Station. In running for the 5PM bullet train out of Shanghai Railway Station, I was reminded again that I was leading an extraordinary life, not always easy but never boring.







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Student Case Study

Sammy, Nanjing Foreign Language School  

In 2012, when I was entered the high school. I feel really glad to study here. The teachers are all very nice and most of them do have talented in teaching. I found that I was given a lot of chances to show my personalities and abilities in from of others. Also, I enjoyed experimental classes a lot. 

I became independent in study since that my parents could no longer help me with my studies. What's more, I believe that to study with foreign teachers actually tells me about how to be show more respect to others and how to understand cultural differences. Sometimes, it was a perfect lesson for me to be more patient.

Firstly, teachers are not as critical as Chinese ones, so I have to be the one who pick out my own mistakes. Then, I have to be very brave to ask all the questions that I want to ask and respond to my teachers' questions since if I do not question them, they may ignore the possibility that students do not understand. Finally, at times homework would be a lot, including three essays to write at one time, and I have no other choice but to be organized, which personality I didn't care much before. 

I still haven't make up my mind about which country to go to for college. However, I really would like to apply for profession of Biochem or Biomedicine and that's why my passion is. I am currently considering about applying forImperial College.





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