Reepham High forms link with Shenzhen Education Bureau in China

Pupils from Shenzhen visiting Reepham High School. Photo: Reepham High School

Pupils from Shenzhen visiting Reepham High School. Photo: Reepham High School - Credit: Archant

Reepham High School has been selected as the first partner school in the UK for the Shenzhen Education Bureau in China.

Pupils from Guangming School at Reepham High. Photo: Reepham High

Pupils from Guangming School at Reepham High. Photo: Reepham High - Credit: Archant

It was selected ahead of 'a huge number of schools in the UK', and the agreement was signed after several months of visits and exploratory talks.

The partnership includes optional Mandarin lesson taught by a native speaker for years 9, 10 and 12, and has already seen 25 pupils and four members of staff from Guangming School attend lessons at the high school this term.

Principal Mark Farrar said his pupils were excited about the link, and added: '[The bureau] was looking at the ethos and quality of lessons and whether they could learn from us, as well as them providing opportunities for us.'

Project manager Zhen Wei said China's education system was 'a little bit behind in some areas, while it is very cutting edge in other areas', and was looking to learn from the UK.


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She said: 'China's is a very, very structured system and well designed, but it is not very flexible, whereas the British education system is very flexible, and accommodates each individual student.'

She added that the bureau was particularly interested in the fact that English schools offer vocational subjects.

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Ms Wei said the bureau had decided that Reepham was the perfect partner.

She said the Chinese pupils had been impressed by Reepham pupils being further ahead of them in subjects apart from maths, despite having a shorter school day, and the Chinese teachers were looking at how to make their lessons more efficient.

She added that Reepham had two or three times more choice of subjects than Guangming School, despite having a quarter of the number of pupils.

Do you have an education story? Email martin.george@archant.co.uk

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