Dr. Mark Reford, Head of School

Dr. Reford is a leading international educator with global experience in all aspects of primary and secondary education. Dr. Reford has published and been interviewed in many local, national and international media outlets on curricular and business trends in American and international education, including The Wall St. Journal, The Washington Post, NPR, Crains Business Journal New York, The Daily News, US News and NAIS Magazine. Born and raised in N. Ireland, he earned a double First at Oxford University where he also earned his doctorate. Dr. Reford has taught at Oxford University, The Stanford University Program in Oxford, Moscow State University, The Institute of Foreign Relations, Moscow, and worked in some of the most prestigious private schools in America, including many years as a teacher and senior manager at Sidwell Friends School in Washington DC. He has worked closely with important educational organizations including The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), The College Board and NWEA, and also with top schools in The United States, Britain and across Asia.

As the first employee and founding CEO of BASIS Independent Schools, he led the teams that created the BASIS Independent School brand and opened the two flagship schools in Silicon Valley and Brooklyn. These simultaneous school openings still stand as the most successful private school openings in the history of American private education in the modern era.

Subsequently as Chief of Business Development and Brand Officer for the holding company, BASIS Educational Ventures, he focused on creating the BASIS Diploma and BASIS Curriculum Schools brands as the gold-standard global American k – 12 educational brands, and creating the business strategy for future international expansion. Alongside the Chief Financial Officer, he co-led the entire transaction process to open the first BASIS Curriculum School outside the United States and China, in Bangkok Thailand.

BASIS International School Shenzhen's mission is to provide its students with the finest education offered in any academic community in China.


Thomas Qiu, Head of Operations

Mr. Qiu has more than 23 years of experience in management, cross-culture and cross-language communication, government relations, and foreign affairs. He worked for three international schools before joining BASIS International School Shenzhen.

As the first Head of Business/HR of the International School of Dongguan (ISD), Mr. Qiu worked intensively with the Head of School and successfully achieved joint accreditation by the U.S.-based Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and the China-based National Center for Curriculum Study and Textbook Development (NCCT) in December 2013, and had the honor of being invited by the NCCT Accrediting Office to join their accrediting team as one of the professional representatives from international schools. As the founding Head of Operations of Shen Wai International School (SWIS), Mr. Qiu had made contribution to its operations system that laid a solid foundation to the success of the school. Prior to his employment at SWIS, Mr. Qiu was the Operations & Government Relations Manager of Shekou International School (SIS), the first and leading international school in Shenzhen that is owned and managed by the Princeton-based International Schools Services (ISS).

Before he moved to the international school sector, he had six years' experience as the founding Chief Representative and Office Manager of the China-Britain Business Council Shenzhen, a UK government sponsored business promotion organization in partnership with the British Consulate General Guangzhou, 2 years experience as a Quality Assurance and Language Specialist at Softitler of Deluxe Digital Studio, the world's leading movie subtitling company in Montreal of Canada, and over 8 years' experience as an official of the Foreign Affairs Office of Shenzhen Municipal Government.

On top of his Bachelor Degree in English Language and Culture received from Guangdong University of Foreign Studies in 1993, Mr. Qiu also gained his MBA degree from the University of Birmingham UK in 2000 under the Chevening Scholarship awarded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the British Government.

An international traveler and global citizen, Mr. Qiu has set foot in 23 countries in Europe, North America, Asia, Oceania and Africa for business and tourist purposes, and he has working and living experience in the UK and Canada. He is a master of English, Mandarin, Cantonese, and other languages in Guangdong Province of China.