© Copyright Dipont Education. All rights reserved. Credit: Design

About the Host School

Ningbo Zhenhai High School has 2,000 students on roll aged 16 to 19 years old. It is one of the top schools in the city and therefore students need to be academically strong in order to be admitted. As a result, students are focused and work oriented and this has helped to develop a culture where academic excellence has predominated.

The history of Zhenhai High School can be traced back to 1732, when a school of Confucian teaching was founded on the site. Zhenhai High School was formally established as a modern high school in 1911 (the year of the Xinhai Revolution) by a local businessman.

The school places great emphasis on mathematics and science education. Students have won numerous awards in national and international mathematics and science Olympiads. In recent years, however, Zhenhai High School has moved away from the more exam focused model and has started to emphasise an all-round education with a wide range of extra-curricular activities and clubs. Students have won top prizes in national invention and national singing competitions.

The school underwent major renovation in 2000 and now has a new science building, IT building, gymnasium, indoor swimming pool and well stocked library. The school campus encompasses several acres but it has also been attractively developed with many garden enclaves and fish ponds. The school has a splendid history and parts of the campus are devoted to archival materials.


About the A Level Centre

The A level Centre at Zhenhai High School has around  200 students on roll. Our students are selected by ability following the successful completion of examinations in mathematics and oral English. Competition is very strong for the 60+ places on offer each year, and we often have 4/5 applicants for every place. The main school has plans to grow the school further over the next few years.

We have a great campus, and the school has a wonderful history. We are proud of our students and you will be impressed by the warm welcome that you will receive either as a visitor or as a teacher. Our students are confident and gregarious. We currently have 14 international teachers who have considerable experience, and we have a support team of Chinese teachers and Counselors numbering 14 at this time.

Our examination results are outstanding and the majority achieve Grades A* to C at IGCSE, AS and A2 level. All of our students are highly motivated, and all of them go to University in the USA and the UK, a smaller number go to Canada, Hong Kong and Australia.

Our students are also successful participants in a wide range of extracurricular activities, and many have achieved success in national and international competitions. Over recent years our students have also been very successful across all of the Dipont sponsored competitions. Every summer a number of our students participate in summer schools in Europe and North America.

We have good teaching and learning resources and our students have access to a designated library; ICT suites and labs for Chemistry, Physics and Biology. During a typical working week our students would also take part on a wide range of extracurricular activities including Drama, Art, Sport, Debate, Business, Conversational English, Chess, Battle of the Bands…and so on. Our students also have an elected Student Representative Council who meeting regularly with the Centre Principal.

All of our international teachers are very happy in the school, and many comment that it is the best place by far that they have taught in. They feel enriched and valued by their work, and they enjoy working in the school.



The school is located about 45 minutes taxi ride from the city centre near to the port area, hence most teachers only tend to venture to the city centre at weekends. The local area has plenty of small shops and local restaurants however.

 An overground and underground metro train service whose terminus is on the outskirts of Zhenhai will take the traveler to the centre of Ningbo in 30 minutes and to the railway station and international airport shortly after. This line is being further extended by several kilometers to provide a new station in the heart of Zhenhai, less than 1Km from the school. 

Ningbo city itself is set 20km inland and has a number of historical sites linked to its importance as a key port throughout China's history. Tianyige Library is said to be the oldest surviving library building in China . It also has all the shopping and leisure facilities of a large city. Typical  Ningbo dishes feature local seafood. The airport has flights to many Chinese airports, including Hong Kong.

The countryside around Ningbo is lovely and there are numerous temples and pagodas to visit. A few hours by boat north of Ningbo and south of Shanghai is the island of Putuo Shan – it is one of the four Chinese mountains sacred to Buddhism and a charming, isolated place with sandy beaches, green hills and monasteries.

Please view the following sites for further information:





Teacher Case Study

Eldred Apanya, Physics teacher

Before joining Zhenhai High School of Ningbo, I have had many years of Physics teaching experience in the United Kingdom. I will be in my fifth year at Zhenhai High School of Ningbo from September 2016; the students in Zhenhai High are unparalleled in their respect, dedication and sweetness. Teaching here is a dream.Being a handsome black guy in town, it’s hard to get used to the staring from the natives, but apart from that I feel safe out here. 

My teaching philosophy is based on the development of every student, through building self-confidence and self-esteem. I believe that students learn through firsthand experience and a stimulating environment, which makes learning personal and relevant to the student. This is achieved by teaching through a range of styles and activities to encourage thinking skills and encourage students to be active learners. 

When I came to Ningbo, I thought my lack of Chinese language skills was going close doors to me.  Now, that is not to say that understanding the Chinese language has not been an important process since I have been here, but being a “blank slate” coming to China actually worked out to my advantage.  Not knowing forced me to ask questions.  It pushed me into situations where I needed to interact and speak with people in the best way that I could. 

Zhenhai High School of Ningbo is located in Zhenhai District, Ningbo, a beautiful coastal city. Zhenhai High School, now enjoying a nation-wide reputation, was established in 1911. With a long history, sound cultural deposits, advanced teaching concepts as well as a profound campus atmosphere, the school has made fruitful achievements. 

Zhenhai is a sleepy town, by 8.00 pm everything is closed. The beauty is that you are only 30 minutes ride away from the buzzing night life in Ningbo City. Ningbo sits at the intersection of three rivers; it's easy to understand why a city was built here centuries ago. It seems that no matter where you are, a short walk will bring you to the riverside.Ningbo’s nightlife is gorgeous and colourful. From dive bars to Irish Pubs, from dance clubs to luxury cinemas, Ningbo has a lot to offer for people to pass the evening. 

The definitive location for a pub crawl in Ningbo is the Laowaitan area, a stretch of bars and pubs. Most serve imported beers alongside the Tsingtao and have local DJs spinning tunes, though occasionally, the city of Ningbo also plays hosts to visiting bands. Ningbo's Old Bund was the place where historic British and Dutch traders lived and you can still see remaining architecture. The swooped lines of Chinese-style buildings are replaced by old stone. 

You can't miss Tainyi Square in Ningbo, and the huge space is great for an evening stroll. There are always multiple happenings here, too: a clown entertaining kids, laser facial demonstrations, concerts, food stands and more in the summer. 

When it comes to street food, this place makes you feel like a kid in a candy shop. You'll find dozens of options—all on a stick—save for big ears of grilled corn. If you're asked about "la jiao" that means spice. Play it safe and say "Yi dian" which means, "just a bit."


» See teacher & administrator case studies from all schools

Student Case Study


I started my A-Level study in 2012 after graduating from Ningbo Foreign Language School, the best junior high school in Ningbo. I did a lot of pre-reading about the materials so the transition period was not that grueling for me. I have enjoyed learning about different cultures, where my teachers originated, and speaking and thinking in a different language. Most importantly, I learnt ‘respect’: respecting my teachers and my classmates (even when sometimes they are incredibly noisy). 

I think the biggest benefit for me has been the opportunity to study in an environment similar to the learning experience I will find at a Western University. I have learned how to manage my time properly and self-study, and I am also trying to learn more British humour so that I can laugh when others are telling jokes! 

Trying to understand the dialect and the different accents that prevail is one of the challenges I have faced. I found out that British people don’t speak English, rather some of them speak with a southern London accent, while a minority of have a strong northern or Newcastle accent - fascinating but challenging!

I achieved 4A* in IGCSE Chemistry, Physics and Biology and A-Level Math and 4A’s in IGCSE Business and AS Chemistry, Physics and Economics. I also achieved 80% in Harvard Organic Chemistry Summer Course. 

I want to be a Chemist, but I am unsure at this time if I want to be pharmacologist or a material scientist. I want to study biochemistry, chemistry and material science in the first year, and then specialize in one of the subjects. As a debate leader, I will not stop thinking and debating, and I plan to be part of the University debate team. Plus, I enjoy European Medieval History, so minoring in History may be a good way to extend my interest. 

» See student case studies from all schools