Forty years ago, a small group of parents in a beautiful leafy area of Hong Kong joined together with a shared vision. They wanted to create a school at the heart of their green and spacious community, a world away from the bustle and crowds of the city.
A school with a solid education programme, led by inspirational teachers and one of the first international schools in the territory to offer Chinese language programme.
Thanks to their passion and dedication Hong Lok Yuen International School was born.
Now four decades later, the school is a thriving success story, accredited by worldwide bodies for the strength of its education programme, and attracting children from all over the world. Ten years ago, it opened its own secondary school, ICHK, offering students a strong through-train education.
But what has remained central to its philosophy is the strong community ethos, which spurred its beginnings. It is the strength of community spirit, which makes the school truly unique in the overcrowded metropolis that is Hong Kong.
Sir Lawrence Kadoorie visited the late General Li Fook Lum’s orchard, known as Hong Lok Yuen Farm and presented his case to turn the land into a commonwealth park.
Hong Lok Yuen Estates was granted permission to build the estate with a requirement from the Government that a school of not less than 12 classrooms was established.
Orchard Kindergarten started operating in a show house in 2nd Street with 19 children and three teachers. On September 16 a joint venture agreement was signed with HLYE to construct a school.
The school opened on September 14, with 33 children using seven classrooms and a library.
The school was officially opened by Mr Ian Mcpherson OBE, JP and Mr Clifford Wong on January 28. HLY School thrived and numbers increased from 33 to 90 in just one year, attracting many new residents to the estate.
The Board and developers agreed to go ahead with Phase 2 to build a purpose built kindergarten.
The Orchard Kindergarten was officially opened on May 23 by Lady Akers-Jones J.P.
A proposal was submitted to extend the school and kindergarten, with construction to start in 1989.
The new block was designed by architect Nelson Chen and opened on May 19.
For the tenth anniversary a new Library was opened.
A school website was established. Elaine Goddard- Tame was appointed as Principal. Reception class became a full day programme.
A five-day Chinese programme was phased in for all children.
2006 - 2007
Agreement to trial International Baccalaureate Primary Years programme.
CIS five year accreditation. In November the school was awarded the secondary school site.
The school was accredited as the first Forest School Development Centre outside the UK.
2020 - 2022
Despite the disruptions caused by COVID 19 the school continued to move forward. We received very positive feedback as part of our 5 yearly re- evaluation by the IB PYP in 2020 and re-accredited by CIS in 2021. As the CIS report noted: “ICHK is a vibrant, innovative, and inclusive school with a commitment to outdoor education and wellbeing. This is not something that is just written in the school’s guiding statements but is lived out in the school from the leadership through to the staff, students, and school community.”
Redevelopment of our outdoor areas took place in 2021 included the planting of our own mini forest on site and the installation of the Jungle Dome play equipment.
The school continues to ensure that all members of our community flourish as we celebrate our 40th Anniversary in 2023-24.