Horsforth Newlaithes Primary School has been involved with the Trust since 2010. The trustees first approached headteacher Jo Blacoe with a project that would involve year 6 children at the school as well as children in Bogu.
‘The children and staff of Newlaithes are so excited about the developing partnership with Bogu. Having already exchanged video footage and scrap books, our pupils have had an insight into life in this remote village, however, there is a wealth of opportunity for this insight to be developed further. Our aim is to broaden the outlook of our pupils and their families by bringing the World Wide Community into our curriculum here in Horsforth. The Global Schools Partnership will formalise our work with Bogu, which will help to deepen the understanding of our communities in a mutual and reciprocal way. The Trust’s work has been an ideal conduit which is allowing this to happen.’ (December 2011)
Trustees along with Year 6 teacher Marianne Bastey, developed the idea of scrapbooks which would illustrate the children’s lives in Leeds. The 2011 the took the Leeds scrapbooks out to Bogu in January and the children were able to see pictures and descriptions of Newlaithes school, the children, their hobbies, their uniform, the wider environment; even snow! Year 6 also made a short film of their school which we were able to show the children in the village.
They also decided to bake buns for the rest of the school to raise some money specifically for sports and games equipment. The foam footballs and bats and balls were a great success with the children in the village.
The children in Bogu then worked in teams to describe their school, homes, games and environment. The resulting scrapbook was brought back to Leeds and given to Newlaithes in a special assembly given by the 2011 team. During the assembly, the whole school listened to our descriptions of Eritrea, the difficulties and differences between life in Leeds and life in Bogu and a film which we had made of the school and village.
This year, in order to develop the partnership further and formalise it, Newlaithes have decided to apply for Global Schools Partnership funding. If we are successful, the two schools will work together on a project with a common global theme. The funding also makes it possible for reciprocal teacher visits to take place.
Newlaithes also took part in a whole-school ‘Book Amnesty’ during the month of November. During the amnesty, children brought in their old books from home. These were shipped to Eritrea and used to stock the new library.