Over the past five years over 450 Shotton Hall Academy students have visited many European countries studying abroad, learning about different cultures and most importantly making new friends!
Erasmus aims to:
- Give young people a glimpse of life in other countries from a perspective beyond that of a tourist.
- Raise students’ horizons and thereby empower them to have the confidence to travel throughout Europe for higher education and/or employment.
- Supplement the curriculum by participating in academic fieldwork in other countries.
- Encourage active citizenship through developing an understanding of democratic processes and an awareness of other cultures.
Our international work is led by British council ambassador, seasoned globetrotter, and self-styled international relations ambassador, maths teacher, Ian Kell.
As well as racking up lots of air miles, Mr Kell has presented training to teachers from four countries in Athens and 29 countries in Warsaw. He has also led training sessions on internationalism at British Council conferences and through The Academy at Shotton Hall, he has supported international project start ups in County Durham, Tyne and Wear and Northumberland.
Erasmus helps students develop new skills, raise their aspirations and gain vital international experience.
To illustrate some of our project aims; our collaboration with Spain is a Mathematics project, our collaboration with Finland is in ICT and other projects have a firm emphasis on Food Technology, promotion of reading strategies or Citizenship.
In addition to this, staff can teach, train or job shadow abroad, develop their professional practice, and build relationships with international peers gaining fresh ideas. Staff working in Shotton Hall SCITT did experience a work shadowing experience in Finland.
As a school, we have collaborated with international partners to drive innovation, share best practice, and offer new opportunities to young people. In the last 12 months, students and staff have had the opportunity to visit Finland, Budapest, Norway, Slovenia, Ciriè, Bremen, Gdansk, Croatia and Warsaw to name but a few!
Around 32 students have been involved this year and they have engaged in projects, which have focused on: Migration, ethics of food production, identity, stereotypes, challenging sexism, racism bullying and homophobia, virtual reality and sustainable cities
In recognition of the Academy’s experience and expertise in international projects, our staff have delivered training sessions to an international audience of teachers in Tblisi Georgia, Corinth in Greece and Warsaw
We have also played host to a number of schools from Spain, Portugal, Italy, Poland, Cyprus, Finland and Slovenia.
As a supplement to our Erasmus projects, Shotton has been actively engaged in E-Twinning, this is a virtual platform where students can communicate in a safe and controlled manner with students abroad. The Academy is a designated E Twinning School and has won the UK prize for the overall best project twice, most recently in 2019, but for seven successive years we have been awarded a major UK prize in one or more category.
In September 2018 The Academy was awarded International School Status and Mr Kell was presented with the award at a special ceremony in the palace of Westminster by the Minister of Education.
Erasmus and E-twinning is not just about international cooperation, over the years we have collaborated with other schools within the trust, and also worked with schools from Liverpool, Manchester, Belfast, Glasgow, and London.