Managing Director Panyathip International School – Laos
John Gwyn Jones was brought up in a Welsh speaking community in West Wales and has spent the last 30 years living and working in South East Asia.
He started his working career in banking (The Midland Bank or now HSBC) before pursuing his teaching qualification at The University of Wales, Trinity College in Carmarthen.
After graduating in 1976 he took up his first appointment as a teacher in a Junior School in Ammanford (7-11 age groups). He was promoted as Deputy Headteacher of the largest Primary School in the County of Dyfed in 1981 (Johnstown Primary School, Carmarthen).
In 1986, John was seconded by Dyfed County Council to take up a three year appointment as a Curriculum Advisor for the British Forces Schools in Hong Kong. He was then asked to take up the appointment of Deputy Headmaster at Gun Clun Hill Barracks School in Kowloon, where he remained until December 1990. In January 1991 he was successful in being appointed to his first Headteacher /Principal post at St Christopher’s International School in Penang, Malaysia.
John became an active member of FOBISIA (Federation of British International Schools in Asia) and was appointed as the first Chairman of the Federation. As a result of this, he has a wealth of knowledge of International schools in South and East Asia. In November 2013, he hosted a regional Leadership Conference for over 100 school leaders in Penang.
John retired as Principal at the end of the 2013/2014 Academic Year (July 2014), after dedicating 23+ long and loyal years of service to St Christopher’s International School, Penang.
In August 2014 he has taken on a new leadership/consultancy position as Director of Development and Deputy Director of Panyathip International Group of Schools in Laos where he supports the development of five campuses – Panyathip International Early Years campus and Panyathip International Primary and Secondary as well as Nonsevanh Village Campuses in Vientiane and the newly opened Panyathip International Savannakhet School.
With the co-operation of the local community as well as the charity Room to Read and the generosity of his son Ben Jones, a Grade 1 through to Grade 10 School with over 300 students was established in Dharus Salam Vidyalayam in the Eastern Province of Trincomalee in Sri Lanka. This school was dedicated to John in recognition of his tireless commitment to helping improve the lives of young people through his 40 years career in teaching and education. Both John and his son Ben now plan to set up a charity to support children to have access to education in poor countries in South and East Asia.
John is also now fully committed to utilising the wealth of his experience and knowledge in supporting the development of International Schools in the region. He is ambitious in taking full advantage of the huge network that he has acquired in supporting the creation of schools that will offer a teaching and learning environment that will bring out the best in the students and equip them with the skills and knowledge that will prepare them for the challenges of the future.
John was recently awarded a Leadership award by Julia Gillard, the first female Prime Minister of Australia, for his dedicated leadership service in International Education. He has been invited to numerous education conferences as a guest and keynote speaker (EDUCATION WORLD FORUM, ASIAN SUMMIT ON SKILLS AND EDUCATION, WORLDIDAC, IPSEF AND BETT) and is a member of the advisory Board of BETT Asia.