Connect, Inspire, Challenge: Make a Difference.

The Western Academy of Beijing provides a learner-centered atmosphere that nurtures a strong sense of community among our 1,400 students in our mission to "Connect, Inspire, Challenge: Make a Difference".


A school’s mission statement describes what a school is seeking to achieve as a community of learners. At WAB, our mission statement is the cornerstone by which we interact as a community and design strategic plans for the future.

as one of the top American schools in Beijing, it is our goal to inspire out students.



What do the different elements of the mission mean?

Connect / 融合

In an ever-changing world where individuals are daily faced with unpredictable situations, the word connect (融合 róng hé) has a special significance. The ability to make connections with people, with communities, with technology, with values and beliefs, with ideas, is the single most important skill any member of our global society can have. At WAB we require all members of our community to connect and be connected.

Inspire / 激发

Inspired people are motivated, enthusiastic and exciting to be around. Educational organizations have a duty to inspire (激发 jī fā), to be places where people dream and are transformed by their dreams and aspirations. At WAB we require all members of our community to inspire and be inspired.

Challenge / 挑战

Places of learning must be challenging (挑战 tiao zhàn). They must require all members of the learning community to challenge themselves to higher levels, to challenge their received knowledge, to be fearless and bold in their thinking and in their actions. At WAB we require all members of our community to challenge and be challenged.

Make a Difference / 贡献

This final phrase (贡献 gòng xiàn) is the call to action for all our community. Connected, inspired people who challenge themselves and others will inevitably make a difference to our world. While our global society develops and new opportunities appear, we also face new difficulties and problems. We cannot prescribe or predict the difference that each individual or group of individuals makes, but we know that each member of WAB’s community is a key part of our mission to make a real difference.

Xue / 学

The character ‘xué 学’ is translated as study or learning. The etymology of the character is: a child (zi) under a roof with head that is full of learning. The character is used in countless Chinese idioms, and Confucius said “学而优则仕 仕而 优则学”,which translates as "if you learn well, serve; if you wish to serve well, learn". The character’s place in the centre of the visual represents the central place that learning has for us in an educational setting. The Chinese character indicates our central platform for learning, our host country China. This character forms the context for the rest of the elements, just as China is the context in which our community lives and learns.

Learner/Mentor Relationship

These two figures represent the learner/mentor relationship,with the mentor figure holding the learner up, encouraging him/her to reach for dreams. The learner’s raised arms represent both the celebratory nature of learning, and the need to reach beyond immediate surroundings to grow as a learner. These figures represent one of the most important relationships in our school, that of mentor and learner. This relationship appears in our daily life in a myriad of ways: between teachers and students; between colleagues; between students themselves and one another; between parents and staff… at any one time any of us can be mentor or learner.

Learning Community

These three figures represent our learning community. They are joined together but each has his/her own individual identity. They tell us that our mission is not just for those of us in the learner/mentor relationship but for all of us; that every student, teacher, staff member, parent or friend of WAB is part of our learning community. Like the learner/mentor figures, the arms of these community figures are visually connected to the central Chinese character, representing to how intertwined we are with China.

Work Hard, Work Together

All the figures are joyful, are diverse and are working together. This connects us to our Core Value of WAB Spirit ‘gong he 工合’ (work hard, work together’), telling us that great things happen when individuals combine their energies into a creative effort for the common good. Mosaic of Diversity, another of our Core Values, is represented by the five colours, referring to the five continents; at least one of these colours appears in the flag of every country in the world. There are five figures, just as there are five Core Values at WAB.

The mission logo shown here is the culmination of collaboration by nine stakeholder groups: WAB’s Founders, the Board of Trustees, Director, parents, teaching staff, support staff, students, alumni and friends of WAB.

Under this unifying mission, both the long-term vision for our school and the day-to-day practices are clear. With a shared commitment to this mission, WAB’s future as a leading, top-tier international school is assured.

Along with our Philosophy and Core Values, WAB’s mission provides the context for our daily activities as well as the framework for our strategic direction.

Our Philosophy

  • WAB educates the whole child

  • WAB champions its staff

  • WAB involves the parents


In 2003, WAB redefined what made our school unique. These are the values we believe in and that are alive in everything we do.

Learner-Centered-WABWhere all decisions are made and actions taken to enhance the life-long learning process so that each member of the WAB family is an inquiring, critical and purposeful learner.


Where with a spirit of commitment, enthusiasm and shared purpose, each member of the WAB family contributes to the whole.


Where by valuing and respecting each other and our environment, we sustain and nurture healthy relationships with and life-long responsibilities to self, family, and the world.

WAB-Spirit-badgeWhere each makes unique and irreplaceable contributions that, when combined, create the WAB family.


Where we strive to nurture socially responsive global citizens bound together by China – the common thread woven throughout our diverse family mosaic.

Since its founding, WAB has championed the rights of our students with a central tenet that an education at WAB be accessible to all. With our school-wide social and educational learning support programs, as well as our unique focus on diversity and inclusiveness, WAB's philosophy, mission and values are all aligned with the United Nation’s Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Our Definition of Learning

Learning at WAB is a transformative process which is intentional and iterative, challenging and joyful, and serves an authentic purpose.


History, WAB

A rich history of more than 20 years of growth and development.

School Campus

School Campus, Map, WAB

Beautiful and functional, our campus has exciting, purpose-built school facilities designed to enhance learning.


Community, WAB

WAB doesn't just involve the community. We ARE a community!


Governance, leadership, WAB

WAB is governed by a board of international leaders with the best interests of students, teachers and staff.

11 Reasons to Come to WAB

WAB mission