Principal’s Welcome

Uplands aims to provide excellent international education for students of all nationalities in a challenging multi-cultural environment. Uplands believes that hope for world peace lies in an interdependent international community where the principles of respect for self, respect for others are strongly held.

Matthew Bristow
Matthew BristowPRINCIPAL


Matthew Bristow was born in Beckenham, in the United Kingdom but started his exploration of the world living with his parents in South America (Trinidad & Tobago and Ecuador). He attended school in England at Dulwich College and Exeter School before being awarded a commission in the Royal Navy serving in the South Atlantic and the Persian Gulf. Matthew then graduated from Homerton College, Cambridge where he obtained a BEd. in Physics. Whilst at university he also obtained a commission in the Territorial Army and served for 10 years in the Cambridge University Officers Training Corps combining this with his teaching career in England.

Matthew moved to Hong Kong in 2008 where he was the Assistant Principal at Quarry Bay School before moving to Singapore to take up his first Principal’s position at EtonHouse International School & Pre-School. In 2010 Matthew was appointed as the Founding Principal of Nanchang International School, Jiangxi Province, China leading the school from its opening (with only 4 children) to it becoming a candidate school for the IBO Primary Years Programme.

Matthew has moved to Uplands with his wife and three children and is looking forward to working with all the school community to continue developing Uplands as one of the best international schools in Asia.

Welcome to the website of the International School of Penang (ISP) – Uplands, one of the oldest and most established international schools in Malaysia. I hope you have found the answers to your questions. Information about the curriculum, subjects, ethos and fees is one thing, but to get a real feel for the school a visit is a must.

We encourage students and their families to spend some time with us in order to have a first hand experience. Prospective students nearly always choose ISP once they have had a visit.

Travelling in Penang can sometimes take longer than expected, finding the right school at the same time as a place to call home should be taken into the equation. Extra-curricular activities and concerts are well attended to make the most of the school experience.

It is important that you also know that we have several expectations on students, parents and staff. Self-discipline is encouraged, challenges should be embraced and risks taken. This happens within a framework of fair and firm discipline. Students should enjoy coming to school and feel safe and accommodated. Our curriculum is focused on the goal of the best preparation for the IB Diploma.

I look forward to meeting you in person. We have tried to answer any potential questions you may have on this website, but there are bound to be some that we miss.

Please contact us with any queries.

Welcome to Uplands!


Mr. Matthew Bristow
Principal, International School of Penang (ISP) – Uplands

Guiding Statements

The International School of Penang (Uplands) is a not-for-profit, co-educational and non-denominational day and boarding school for students aged between 4 – 18 years old.

Vision: To provide an exemplar international education in a dynamic multi-cultural environment, encouraging all school members to be active learners and engage with the local and wider community.

Mission: To be an international community that upholds the School’s values, nurturing its members to become globally minded citizens.
Motto: Respect for Self. Respect for Others.

Contact Us

Further Information

For further information or to make an appointment to visit, please contact the Admissions Officer at the address given below:
Contact Us Telephone: (604) 881 9777
Facsimile: (604) 881 9778