Leo Academy Trust Develop Sister Schools In Hangzhou

In July 2019, a cluster of Leo Academy Trust schools hosted over 100 Chinese students as part of our Sister School Partnership Programme.

Ahead of launching the return student exchange visits to China, a group of senior leaders travelled to the six sister schools in Hangzhou on a leadership delegation. True Education Partnerships and the partnered schools organised itineraries that enabled the visitors to learn about the history of the local area and education practices.

Leo Academy Trust look forward to learning from each school’s international research, excellent curriculum design and teacher development. In October 2020, a group of students from four Leo schools will visit their sister schools to develop an immersive educational experience for their students.

Immersive Sister School Visits

The group first arrived at Hangzhou Cuiyuan No.1 Primary School to initiate a Sister School Partnership with Brookfield Primary Academy. Founded in 1986, the school currently serves a total of 1300 students in Hangzhou.

After receiving a warm welcome the visitors observed an English lesson, commenting on the conscientious, confident and polite manner of the Chinese students. Similarly, Cheam Common Junior Academy were welcomed with a rock band from their sister school Cuiyuan No.2 Primary School by grade four students to recognise the occasion. Afterwards, the visitors learnt about the young pioneers course available to students as part of the school’s curriculum.

Mrs Lester, Headteacher at Cheam Fields Primary Academy, was very proud to sign a Sister School Partnership agreement with WenXin Primary School. On arrival, the senior leaders were met by a spectacular marching band. The immersive school visit included calligraphy lessons and an observation of a traditional Chinese music course.

Xiao He Primary School, the sister school of Cheam Park Farm Primary Academy, promotes happiness education to all of its 950 students. Students are encouraged to read and share aspirations in the school’s dreams garden.

The delegation was a great opportunity for the senior leaders to exchange teaching practices. During an English lesson, the teachers discussed how they can teach foreign languages across the trust. Consequently, Leo Academy Trust have launched their Mandarin Language Programme for students across the trust to enjoy weekly lessons ahead of their trip to Hangzhou in 2020.

Leo Academy Trust have also entered a Sister School Partnership with both Shenglan Experimental Primary School and Boachuta Shenhua Experimental School, who proudly hosted the visitors.

True Education Partnerships have brought learning to life through our work with our sister schools.

Phillip HedgerCEO, LEO Academy Trust

Philip Hedger, CEO of Leo Academy Trust, said: “Our new Sister School Partnerships with schools in Hangzhou are now an integral part of our curriculum at LEO Academy Trust.

“Children learn Mandarin and study Chinese culture and civilisation from Year 4. True Education Partnerships have brought learning to life through our work with our sister schools.

“We have already hosted over 100 Chinese pupils from Hangzhou at schools across our Trust, with our Principals making a return visit to Shanghai and Hangzhou. The welcome we received was incredible and the quality of education being provided was impressive.

“As well as discovering more about local life in China, our leadership delegation brought home a wide range of school improvement ideas to implement back in London. We are now eagerly looking forward to taking a group of Year 6 pupils to visit our sister schools in 2020.”

Ofsted Recognition

Leo Academy Trust now offer a Mandarin Language Programme to their students ahead of their visit to their sister schools in October 2020.

Leo schools have received strong praise from Ofsted for their strong commitment to ensure disadvantaged pupils take part in things they’d otherwise not experience. The offering of Mandarin language and Sister School Partnerships with schools in Hangzhou has been recognised as a vital part of this achievement.Β 

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