* indicates required

A global outlook on education

WOULD you like your child to emerge from education as a confident, independent young adult, with a full and life-long appreciation and understanding of other cultures? To possess invaluable, life-long interpersonal skills, such as an ability to forge new friendships quickly and easily, network with confidence and communicate well with others, having developed into a caring, global citizen?

Who wouldn’t? We all want this and more for our children, especially in today’s challenging, changing and uncertain world.

As schools, with our wider communities, it is our joint responsibility to deliver these attributes as well as many more, to prepare our students for the changing world.

Learning to appreciate and absorb cultural differences is part of the rich curriculum and guiding ethos at Northampton High School. The uptake of GCSE languages has dropped across the country since it was made optional in the 2000s. Against this national backdrop, the school celebrates the European Day of Languages each year (this year with a baking challenge as part of the activities), language exchanges, a residential in Year 8 to Normandy, cultural visits every year, an exciting Erasmus+ project, collaborating with schools in Germany, Hungary, Latvia and Portugal, as well as hosting of international university fairs, providing a myriad of opportunities for students to develop a global perspective. All students choose a language to study to at least GCSE level, and many choose more than one, continuing on to A Level studies.

The debate is not about which languages we should teach. Language-learning is more than mastering a language. It is about mastering the skills for language acquisition, transferrable to other languages in the future. Crucially, it is about developing the cultural awareness – a vital transferable skill, indispensable in international business negotiations. It is part of the armoury of our ambitious young people.

This is why, when receiving the news of receiving the highly regarded British Council eTwinning National eTwinning Award at the beginning of October, there was much reason for celebration at Northampton High School. The school was awarded the prize for outstanding contribution to international school collaboration. To secure the award, the school worked in partnership with pupils in five other countries – Spain, France, Greece, Slovakia and Slovenia – to create an outstanding project using digital collaborative tools. The project was entitled ‘Don’t judge a person by a face#eTwinclusion!’ and the judging panels commented about the school’s award-winning project: ‘this eTwinning project emanates commitment, collaboration and community engagement. The students engaged enthusiastically in the universal theme of inclusion as it impacts at all ages. Through the diverse and extensive use of technology, face to face encounters with their communities, artists and parents they have related high impact outcomes and legacy…in this excellent project’.

To secure the eTwinning National Award is a real honour for the students and teachers who participated in this project and many others. The eTwinning project has brought a broad range of benefits to pupils, and is an outstanding example of the international flavour enjoyed in school, as a commitment to developing pupils’ global outlook in these times of change.

Find out more by calling Northampton High School on 01604 765765 or email Amanda Wilmot at

Companies mentioned in this article

More news articles: