As a small rural comprehensive, less than 1% of our students are from non-Caucasian ethnic groups. Due to the relative isolation of the school, we feel it is important to promote a sense of European and international identity by providing opportunities for our students to have a positive exposure to people from other cultures, in order to extend and enhance their knowledge and understanding of the cultures and heritage of countries other than their own.
The school has a long history of integrating an international dimension into the whole school curriculum, as specified in the International Policy. International connections are embedded within schemes of work on a departmental level, and we participate in a range of cross-curricular projects designed to increase student awareness of other cultures and to better prepare them for life and work as Global Citizens. We have been the coordinating school in several ‘Comenius’ projects, covering a range of themes and subjects. Through this we have developed strong bonds with several schools in many countries across the European Union and are planning to participate in the new ‘Erasmus +’ programme, which will allow us to explore in more detail the issues facing young people today and so help them prepare more effectively for the future.
We have a well-established partnership with a school in India supported through the ‘Connecting Classrooms’ and previously the ‘Global School Partnership’ programmes. We do annual reciprocal teacher exchanges to share good practice and have an on-going programme of project work, which involves several classes and year groups. We have also recently established a second Asian partnership with a school in China with whom we plan to work collaboratively and do regular student and teacher exchanges. We have already welcomed a party of students and teachers, who spent a week experiencing school life with us last summer. We look forward to hosting them again this summer, along with the possibility of some of our students making a reciprocal visit in the future.
We firmly believe that if we want our learners to become aware of global issues and understand that their future is intimately bound up in the future of other people and places, then we must provide opportunities for them to take initiative and make things happen. Thus we invite students who show an interest in learning more about the world and meeting new people to become International Leaders. These Leaders play an important ambassadorial role in keeping students informed of the international activities taking place within the school and participating in conferences to share what we do with other schools. They also help organise and present project work done with partner schools along with hosting visiting students and teachers from other countries.
If you would like more information about International activities at Thomas Keble School please contact:
Miss Rachel Thomas