ESF The First 50 Years - People stories

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English Schools Foundation

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ESF long-serving staff: Winson Chow

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 08 June, 2017, 3:32pm
UPDATED : Friday, 09 June, 2017, 9:02am

[Sponsored article] The culture of learning at ESF goes beyond just its pupils, Winson Chow found out, as the laboratory technician at Sha Tin College (STC) has received continuous educational and professional support from the Foundation; including sponsorship for his college degree and professional development opportunities, over the past 34 years.

Winson started his first job as a laboratory attendant at South Island School (SIS) after finishing secondary school. “I looked forward to going to work every day,” he says.  “It was such a friendly environment at SIS. Staff members of different departments would meet up often after school for tea.”

“After five and a half years at SIS, I transferred to STC, which also had a great working atmosphere. I have worked with five science heads over the years, and all of them were committed to creating and sustaining workplace camaraderie. I always describe it as a ‘brothers and sisters’ department.”

With the support from his colleagues, department head and then STC principal Mr Cottam, Winson took to study for a bachelor degree in science, and graduated with first honours in 1996, with a focus on physics.

Management also went the extra mile to ensure staff received promotions based on merits. In 1989, Winson recalls, STC principal at the time Ms Bray; and Mr Winderam, head of science worked together with the ESF human resources department to make sure that Winson received his promotion to acting Laboratory Technician I even through Winson’s experience was two years short of the government’s requirement for such a promotion.

“Teachers, technicians and even school administrators are keen to share their knowledge,” says Winson. “We are all aware that we have our own strengths, whether it is in theoretical knowledge, technical skills, or practical know-how. It is a really stimulating environment as we are all motivated to learn from each other to do a better job.”

Winson says he is especially grateful for the school’s commitment to promoting a culture of learning at all levels, and how they motivate everyone to be the best they can be.

“We all have a strong sense of belonging to the ESF– some of the people I met at SIS are still meeting up for dinner,” he says. “They have all been working for the ESF for 30, 40 years or more. It’s a unique place where you get to develop yourself professionally, and form meaningful, life-long friendships along the way.”