Simplifying the Relationship between Parents and Schools

【Interview with Anne Murphy, Director of ITS Education Asia (School Advisory Services)】

With over 12 years of experience in the field of education consultancy in Hong Kong, ITS Education Asia offers professional school advisory services for a whole range of schooling options from preschools to special needs institutions. Its service also covers boarding schools in various areas of Asia and the UK, as well as universities in the US and UK. Based on the premise that every child is different and what suits one child may not suit another, ITS Education Asia has built a strong reputation amongst parents as a trusted education resource.

Anne Murphy, who is the Director of the School Placement Services for ITS Education Asia, has many years’ teaching experience from preschool to university levels. She was born and educated in Ireland and has lived in Hong Kong for 17 years. She pursued her Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) at Hong Kong University and also completed a Higher Diploma course in Teaching English.

ITS Education Asia was first started in 2005 by Danny Harrington and Gary Hadler. ITS started as a physical tutorial school in Hong Kong in 2005. In 2009, a second school was founded, and in 2012, the founders set up an online education system.  

When Anne joined the team in 2007, she set up the school search services. “Before I developed the services, I noticed that relocating parents were struggling to secure school places for their children. Because of this, our tutorial schools were an ideal option for children who were on waitlist for mainstream schools. Myself and the founders saw a gap in the market and set up the education consultancy services."

ITS Education Asia became the first independent education consultancy company in Hong Kong specializing in school search services. Guiding students through the entire application process, Anne and her team help them improve their success rate and advise them on suitable academic pathways up to university level. The school advisory service at ITS Education Asia does more than just search for and recommend schools for students - it provides a top-notch personalized service with exceptional results. “Our mission is very simple. We aim to simplify the relationships between parents and schools. We strive to know and understand the educational and financial background of students to provide them with only the highest quality advice and information in reaching their goals.”

Nine years ago, ITS Education Asia published their first schools guide book, called The Unique Asia Schools Guide Book (UASG). The 9th edition is now available. Every year the writers and researchers of the schools guide gather information on the featured schools by visiting each school, interviewing staff and parents, and analyzing new programmes, external exam results and overall quality of the schools. The schools guide not only contains the latest information about a range of schools, but also insightful articles on curriculum choices and international school life. “The Schools Guide is an informative source for students and parents - especially for expatriate families who are not very familiar with the city - to have a better understanding of school choices,” said Anne.

Whizpa users can now enjoy the exclusive offer of a special price of HK$100 for the Schools Guide:

Having rich experience in the area of school placement services, Anne points out the three factors students should consider when applying for the school of their choice. “First, it is the personal feeling about the school. Every school gives you a different perspective. It’s important that you feel comfortable about the school you select. It’s indeed quite subjective what can set a parent off in a negative direction about a school.”

”Secondly, Anne advises parents to search for schools bearing in mind what they want a school to do for their child. Parents are the ones who understand what their child needs at school”.

Lastly, Anne stresses the importance of doing research. “If you were looking for a piano tutor or moving to a new home, you would talk to friends, colleagues or research online.  Researching schools isn’t any different; however, the choice of resources you use to select schools is more important.  You will also need to visit schools, attend seminars, read published reports, join social media groups, etc. In addition to the schools’ curricula and philosophy, it’s also necessary to consider the school admissions policies and all other services,” said Anne.

With a long history and an international reputation, Anne indicates that referrals have led ITS Education Asia to success. “We built our business on delivering good, genuine service. We believe if you deliver a high level of service, always keep the interests of your clients’ close to any decisions and put them first at all times, then you will succeed.” ITS Education Asia is listed on Anne looks forward to reading parents’ reviews, and understanding why ITS Education Asia was their choice.

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