BHS School Council
The purpose of School Councils in ESF schools is to work in conjunction with the senior management team and staff to help provide the very best education for its students. Here are the members of the BHS School Council and their biographies.
Kenneth Wong, Chairman
Having worked in both the government and private sectors for nearly 30 years, Kenneth is now contributing his time in community work around Hong Kong. He has since developed a passion for the education system and taking part in nurturing the younger generations. This is a natural fit. Kenneth regards himself as an approachable person with an open mind for new ideas and concepts, and he looks forward to making a lasting impression at BHS. Kenneth is the Chair of the School Council and Chair of the Staffing Sub-Committee.
Dr. Jamie Schmitz, Principal
Jamie holds a firm belief that the key to successful education is the creation of strong, positive relationships, making schools joyful and inclusive places for all.
Jamie’s educational journey began at the University of Tasmania where they earned a B.Ed in 1994. This journey continued at the same institution later, resulting in a Masters degree in Educational Leadership and a Doctoral Degree in Coaching Psychology. Spanning a 27-year career, Jamie has had the honour of working with the International Baccalaureate (IB) curricula in a variety of cultural and school contexts globally.
As an educator, Jamie thrives on helping others to explore, attempt new things, and foster their innovative and creative spirits. Jamie likens his role to the captain of a sailboat, steering the learning journey by actively listening, learning, and making minor course corrections that enable everyone to bring their unique talents and perspectives to the table.
Jamie enjoys playing the guitar and singing, staying active through strength training, and practising person-centred coaching.
Jamie feels privileged to serve the students, parents, and staff at Beacon Hill School.
Rob Shorthouse, Director- Communications
Rob is a seasoned communications and marketing professional, with 25 years of experience working for large organisations and political campaigns in the UK, the Middle East and here in Hong Kong. A native of Scotland, his career has seen him take on high-profile roles covering a wide variety of sectors – ranging from government to sport, policing to public transport. Rob is committed to developing and empowering the people he works with and has, during his time with ESF, become passionate about education in general – and ESF’s vision of helping every student be the best that they can be in particular.
Rob’s wife is a teacher at ESF Sha Tin Junior School – and his daughter is a student at ESF West Island School. In his spare time he likes long distance running – although some recent knee problems that have nothing to do with his age have curtailed this temporarily! He also enjoys going to the movies and just spending good quality time with his family.
Joanne Chan, Parent Representative
Joanne is the Acting Chairperson of the PTA and a member of the Building Committee of the School Council. She has two children, a son aged 8 in BHS and a daughter aged 13 in Island School. Joanne grew up in HK and has worked in the public relations sector for over 20 years. As a ‘mompreneur’ for over more than a decade, she has become an active learner and multitasker – enabling her to balance being an effective mother and a successful professional. She loves playing tennis, running and hiking. She hopes to work closely with other PTA members to enhance the health and well-being of BHS students.
Teresa Kwan, Parent Representative
Teresa was brought up in Toronto and graduated from the University of Toronto. She has worked in different industry sectors including University, Pharmaceutical, Insurance, Finance and Investment in Toronto and later in Hong Kong. Teresa has a son who is currently in Year 6 at BHS. This is her 6th year participating in PTA as a parent member and had been a Treasurer for four years . Teresa hopes to continue promoting parent-teacher collaboration to benefit students at BHS.
Joseph Law, Community Representative
Joseph is the Managing Director of CLP Power Hong Kong and holds overall responsibility for the operations of CLP’s Hong Kong regulated business, which includes a vertically integrated electricity utility serving customers in Kowloon, the New Territories and most of the outlying islands. Joseph has a banking background before joining CLP in 2001 and has a range of experience in the energy business from finance, renewable energy development, fuel procurement, strategic planning, commercial development, and operations. He is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA). He joined the BHS School Council in 2021 and is the Chair of the Finance Sub-Committee.
Joe Lau, Community Representative
Joe, CPA, is currently the Team Head of Credit Suisse Private Bank, Greater China region. Prior to that, he was the Head of Finance of Credit Suisse Private Bank for North Asia responsible for the region’s financial management, strategic planning and controlling functions. He joined Credit Suisse in 2006 from JPMorgan Asset Management, where he was the Financial Controller. In addition, he spent five years in public accounting with KPMG Silicon Valley Office in the United States and PwC Hong Kong. He received his Bachelor Degree in Finance from the University of Hong Kong and he is a Certified Public Accountant (U.S.). Joe’s leisure activities include traveling, fitness training, watching his son playing ice hockey and spending time with friends and family. Joe joined the BHS School Council in 2019 and is the Chair of the Buildings and Redevelopment SubCommittee.
Teacher Representative (Colette Davis)
Colette is the leader of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Beacon Hill school where she has been working as part of the Inclusion team for over 8 years. Before BHS she worked with children with individual needs in schools in Dubai for 8 years, and prior to that Colette was based at Kennedy and Bradbury, both schools within ESF. Colette was originally from the UK but grew up in HK and attended ESF schools as a student. Colette is a firm believer in Inclusion and diversity and is an advocate for children with additional needs. When not working, she loves hiking, playing hockey and hanging out with her two daughters.
Teacher Representatives (Susan King)
Susan has been with the ESF family for many years. She attended ESF schools as a student and has now been teaching at Beacon Hill School for 14 years. After university, Susan also spent a few years teaching in the UK. Susan is a strong believer in working collaboratively to create the best learning experiences and environments for the children. Susan enjoys traveling with her family and exploring HK.
Priya Chainani, Support Staff Representative
Priya initially started her collaboration with Beacon Hill School as a parent volunteer in 2001, after which she became a permanent member of staff. She has now been at Beacon Hill School for over 15 years, passionately supporting the education and development of students from all year groups in her role as Education Assistant. She has extensive experience with inclusive education, and thoroughly enjoys her role.
The school council:
- is accountable to the Board of Governors and also to parents and the wider community for the way it carries out its functions;
- seeks to develop effective working relationships with the principal, staff and parents; ESF management; other schools and the wider community;
- acts at all times in accordance with the requirements laid down in the Ordinance and Regulations;
- is a collective entity and acts as a group. No one councillor or category of councillors has any right to act individually except when the school council has delegated authority to do so.
The strength of a school council lies in the talents and commitment of its members, and in their ability to work together as a team for the good of the school.
The BHS Council has 10 members, comprised of the following: –
- a Chairman, appointed by the Board, who is neither an employee of ESF nor the parent of a student at the School
- 2 persons from the general community who are neither employees of ESF nor parents of students at the School, appointed by the Board;
- 2 persons elected by members of the teaching staff of BHS from among their own number;
- 2 parents who are not employees of ESF, one elected by the parent members of our PTA committee and one elected by the parents of the School;
- 1 person elected by the support staff of BHS from among their own number;
- the Chief Executive Officer of ESF, or her appointed delegate;
- the Principal.
The Council has meetings 5 times each year.
School Council Members 2023-2024
|Office Bearer||Name & E-Mail|
|Chairman||Mr Kenneth Wong
|Principal||Dr Jamie Schmitz
|ESF ex Officio
|Ms Belinda Greer
Mr Rob Shorthouse
|Parents Representatives||Ms Joanne Chan
Ms Teresa Kwan
|Community Representatives||Mr Joseph Law
Mr Joe Lau
|Teacher Representatives||Ms Colette Davis
Ms Susan King
|Support Staff Representative||Mrs Priya Chainani|