The Dragon's Tale

The Biweekly Newsletter of the Kaohsiung American School

2019-2020, Issue #1: August 19

From the Desk of Dr. Ploeger

Welcome to the 2019-20 school year at KAS. We’ve had an exciting two weeks thus far, and we hope you’ve had the opportunity to hear from your children and teachers about how classes are going. If you have any questions at any time, we encourage you to ask us. We are here to make learning rigorous and fun.

For years it’s been our mission to challenge students to achieve academic excellence, and to prepare them to be: Balanced individuals, Independent leaders, and Global citizens. On Wednesday, 8/21 we had our second annual beginning of year whole school assembly, where we talked about our mission of Thinking BIG. We heard from our high school student council and also our administration about what is means to Think BIG, and how we can push ourselves even further in those key areas. You can learn more about this by watching our assembly here.

Big picture

New York Philharmonic Strings Trio Visits KAS

This past Friday the 16th, KAS was very fortunate to welcome the Strings Trio from the New York Philharmonic who held an enlightening talk about strings instruments and who gave a short performance for our students over two sessions for all students in grades 3 - 12. We are grateful to have had a world class performance here on campus.

Open House

Friday, Aug. 30th, 3:15pm

Kaohsiung American School

Our open house is coming up on Friday, 8/30. We will begin at 3:15 in the Auditorium and classroom visits will take place from 3:30 - 5:15. Please look for more information about the open house coming from principals.

Dragon Athletics

Welcome back from the Athletic Department. We have already begun our preparations for the athletic year by completing both our Varsity boys and girls volleyball tryouts, and will have completed the Varsity boys soccer tryout by Wednesday, August 28. We want to get an early start on training, and especially for Varsity Volleyball as we will be hosting the ACAMIS Volleyball tournament from October 24 to 26 in our gym. Our MS athletic season will also commence with the start of the season 1 EC activity schedule and late busses (September 5th). MS will begin the year with soccer. Sign ups for MS athletics will go out on August 27th. For an overview of MS Athletics, please see the MS Athletic Quick Reference Guide.

Mr. Payne, Middle School Principal

Greetings KAS Middle School Community: 親愛的國中家庭們: I hope we have met by now, if not please say “hello” to me at KAS Middle School Open House on Friday, August 30, at 3:15pm. We will start in the school auditorium. See you there!

I am honored and pleased to be working with our wonderful children. I can say with confidence, based on my many years of experience, that KAS Middle School is among the best in the world at meeting the academic and character needs of our students.

KAS Middle is an International Baccalaureate, Middle Years Program (IB, MYP) school, which means our curriculum and pedagogy are aligned with world class standards and excellent university and career outcomes for youth. The IB program supports our school values and Think BIG philosophy. At the core is the IB MYP learner profile, and the ten attributes fostered in students that promote their development as responsible members of their local, national and global communities. IB learners strive to be inquirers, knowledgeable, thinkers, communicators, principled, open-minded, caring, risk-takers, balanced and reflective.

I look forward to working with each member of our school; students, staff, and parents, to support our students’ achievement. Please don’t hesitate to contact me any time.

Mr. Coyle, Elementary School Principal

Hello and welcome to the 2019 - 2020 school year. My name is Jessie Coyle and I am the new Elementary School Principal here at Kaohsiung American School. I moved to Kaohsiung in early July from Nairobi, Kenya and I am already enjoying exploring and discovering all this city has to offer.

The Elementary School has had an amazing start. It is wonderful to see the classrooms filled with children’s smiling faces and hear their laughter through the halls. Our dedicated and passionate teachers and teaching assistants worked hard to set up and organize their classrooms to be ready to welcome our students and help them feel safe and comfortable in their transition back to school. Starting the school year with strong relationships is so important for children and from the first two weeks of school I can already see KAS is a special place.

Open house this year will be on Friday, August 30 from 3:15 - 5:00 for Elementary School parents. Here you will have the opportunity to visit your child’s classroom as well as any specialist teachers. I encourage all of you to attend to get to better know the day to day experiences of your children. I look forward to working with the KAS community this school year and thank you for helping me feel so welcome already.

College Corner

Greg Bishop College Counselor 大學輔導老師

Jill Newman College Counselor 大學輔導老師


Welcome to all of our students & families for another year at KAS. I would also like to welcome Ms. Jill Newman, our new colleague who will be helping me halftime in college counseling. I will be working with senior students whose family name is from A to Lee. Ms. Newman will be helping students from Jer. Lee to Z. The other half of her time will be spent working with high school students doing personal & academic counseling. If you would like to book an appointment with Ms. Newman, you can email her at

Senior Students & Families

The College Process has already started in February of this year and we have been working together on such topics as organizing college expectations; researching colleges; college requirements; choosing a college & major; college essays etc. Parents are highly encouraged to make an appointment with their child’s college counselor so we can all work on supporting the students in their choices. Communication is a key factor in making realistic choices.

Upcoming College Visits

So far we have 20 university visits planned starting on Sept. 3 Parents are more than welcome to attend any of these sessions. A full list of visitors is available on the students’ CIALFO account under “college visits” A few of those attending are listed below. This is not a complete list. We are working on adding them to the school website. Please call Ms. Denise Wu for further details about times and venue. .

  • Sept 3 Waseda University 12:30 pm
  • Sept 9 Yale-NUS 2 pm
  • Sept 9 UCLA 6 PM
  • Sept 11 Mc Master University Canada 12:40 pm
  • Sept 14 Taiwan Counselors College Far @ TAS 135 universities present 2-4 PM
  • Sept 18 USC- 9 am & Indiana University Bloomington 12 noon
  • Sept 19 Boston University 3:30 PM Sept 30 Brown University 12 noon
  • Sept 30 University of Pennsylvania 12 noon

Please check weekly as more are being visits are being added.

Grade 12 Parent Meeting

On Thursday, August 29, we would like to invite parents of grade 12 students to meet with the college counselors for morning coffee/tea. Any questions you have about the college process at this point can be discussed. As well, we would like to share with you our plan for working with students from now until Christmas break on US and Canadian college applications. Please check with the front office as to the room location for our meeting.

We Are KAS

KAS strives to be one of the finest American International Schools in the World. KAS challenges students to achieve academic excellence and prepares them to be balanced individuals, independent learners, and global citizens.

Kaohsiung American School (KAS) is a private, non-profit, co-educational Pre K – 12 institution offering an American, college preparatory program leading to a US high school diploma and the opportunity for an IB Diploma.

KAS is located in the northern area of Kaohsiung city, the second largest city in Taiwan with 1.5 million inhabitants. Kaohsiung American School was established in 1989 as an elementary school serving the needs of local and expatriate families with children.