Sister School Partnerships
Between UK & China Schools

Begin your school’s journey to a long-lasting, international school partnership with the official providers for the Government-backed Sister School programme.

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Sister School Partnerships

What is a Sister School Partnership?

Sister School Partnerships are long-term agreements between two schools (sometimes known as twin schools), consisting of immersive student exchanges, pedagogy exchanges, participation in joint projects and curriculum enrichment.

International school partnerships provide a great opportunity to help students develop skills that allow them to succeed in education, work and society. Sister School Partnerships with TEP are created with government backing to create a school alliance between a UK school and a school in China.

Meet the expectations of the Ofsted framework’s ‘Personal Development’ section; become a UK ambassador and teach valuable life skills such as resilience, confidence, independence, responsibility, respect and diversity appreciation. Furthermore, our Learning Unleashed website is an exclusive platform that sister schools can use to access an abundance of e-learning courses and teacher resources to support your partnership and supplement the education experience.

Our Sister School Partnership programme consists of bilateral student exchanges and participation in joint projects with a Chinese school. This is an opportunity for students to host Chinese students at their school and embark on a life-changing school trip to China. These experiences have been shown to encourage personal development and teach valuable life skills such as leadership, maturity and independence. Even for students who do not directly participate, our partnership programmes have been shown to have far-reaching benefits on the school community long after their initiation.

Benefits of a Sister School Partnership:

  • Encourages cultural tolerance and highlight diversity
  • Offers immersive education experiences that benefit the whole school community
  • Helps schools meet expectations of the 2019 Ofsted framework
  • Makes your school more competitive and attractive to parents
  • Increases students’ confidence and social skills
  • Creates enthusiasm for foreign language learning
  • Broadens your school’s international networks and access to new approaches to teaching and learning
  • Offers a unique professional development opportunity for staff.
A Heads Delegation to China initiates your Sister School Partnership.
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The Sister School Partnership Process

Leadership Delegation

To set up an international school partnership, UK headteachers must attend a leadership delegation in China.

Host Sister School

UK schools can then host their Chinese Sister School, giving all the students an incredible culture-sharing experience.

Visit Sister School

UK students will later visit their sister school in a life changing immersive experience journey to China.

Joint Projects

We encourage partnered schools to stay in touch through regular joint projects and shared education practices.

Sister School FAQs

How does a Sister School Partnership benefit my pupils?

  • Provides life changing, immersive experiences
  • Offers trips that will inspire, equip and support them to succeed in life and learning.
  • Gives students pride in their own culture by being ambassadors of the school and the UK
  • Increases personal awareness and confidence
  • Raises cultural awareness and highlighting diversity and similarities in lives around the world
  • Increases understanding on how interdependent countries and peoples are, both globally and locally
  • Gives exposure to varied opportunities that enable focus and clarity on their future potential
  • Results in life-long friendships.

How does True Education support the process?

  • We find a suitable sister school and initiate the contact with the school in China.
  • We contact local government authorities in China on your behalf.
  • We organise the trips to and from China with detailed itineraries – flights, accommodation, sightseeing and transport.
  • We have the Visa expertise and organise the whole process for you.
  • We support you with continued and regular communications and translations.
  • We compile Risk Assessments and help you comply with required  local authority documentation.
  • We support and encourage joint projects between the schools.
  • We have templates, resources and presentations that you can use for promoting and explaining the programmes to all stakeholders.

How does the Visa process work?

For your Sister School trip to China, all British passport holders will require a visa. If you hold any other passport or you were born outside of the UK (even if you hold a British passport), requirements may differ, and we suggest you contact us.

True Education Partnerships will assist with the Visa process if you supply us with all the relevant information. There are two options, a single person visa for each individual on the trip or a group visa.

Factors that may affect applications:

  • You hold a British passport but were not born in the UK.
  • You hold a British passport but your passport doesn’t state you’re a ‘British Citizen’.
  • You hold any other passport that is not British or in the EU.
  • You hold a dual nationality.
  • If you have a criminal conviction.
  • You have been denied a Chinese visa before.
  • You must reside in the UK permanently.

How much is the Head's Delegation?

To initiate the partnership there is a leadership delegation to visit your sister school. The cost of this trip, £1850*, is fully reimbursable when you launch your pupil trip.

Next Steps:

1) Register your interest in developing a Sister School Partnership directly with our team or via our website

2) Consider getting your Trust on board as they can often provide support, so speak to your CEO.

Find out more about the Heads Delegation to China in 2020 >>

Speak to our team