Chinese Exchange Visit 2017

Posted at 2:05 pm on 1st March, 2017

St Bede’s welcomes our visitors from Number 18 Middle School, Fouzhow, China.

Last half term we welcomed our International friends from 18 Middle School, Fouzhow, China. This exchange visit was a first on many levels for our school community and was a resounding success for everyone involved. This visit was in collaboration with Edunion, an organisation based in Preston, who carry out school exchange visits to China on a regular basis. We first got in touch with Edunion back in July ’16 and very quickly our visitors had planned their visit. When our guests arrived in the UK they spent a week in London and Oxford taking in the sights before travelling to be with us in Ormskirk for their second week, and what a week it was. During this week they stayed with 25 of our host families who volunteered to become host families, we are ever so grateful for their dedication, support and enthusiasm towards the exchange, and our parents really helped make it the success that it was, we cannot thank them enough for everything that they did prior to and during their visit. Our visiting students experienced British family life, food, culture as well as being treated to after school events such as ice skating, running, lazer quest, trampolining, shopping, ferry crossings, the sights of Liverpool and Southport, the list goes on.

While they were with us in school they attended normal school day lessons, including PE, Drama, Music, and Creative Arts, which is outside of the normal curriculum for them in China. With us they experienced British education, they ate our food in our canteen at lunch, whilst developing their communication and English skills. They built a special bond with their host families and it was a week that both visiting and host child will remember for ever, demonstrated not least by the tears and emotions expressed on their last day.

The week’s impact however went beyond the families and host children, as it had a positive impact on our whole school and parish community with a highlight for the visiting staff, being an afternoon tea event at the parochial house, very kindly organised by Father Godric. They were overwhelmed by his hospitality.

We very much look forward to our return leg of the exchange in October, when we will make an exciting return visit to our friends at Number 18 Middle school, Fouzhow, before spending a few days taking in the sights of Beijing before our return to Manchester.

In addition to the week, we also made a documentary of their time with us, funded by the Confucius institute, emphasising the importance of exchange visits on an International level and also highlighting the difference and similarities of our school systems and life as a teenager on opposite sides of the globe. All in all it was a great accomplishment for our school and we have now made friends on an international level, whom we are proud, grateful and excited to have made.

A fantastic week for our whole school community.

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