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Sunday 05-Mar-2017
【SCMP Education Post:寄宿學校攻略】舊瓶與新酒的完美混合-Benenden School
提到英國寄宿女校,有人的第一感覺就是「古老,守舊,一味讀書」。然而,今天想介紹的Benenden School則一反其道。學校外表典雅宏偉,同學們予人感覺也賢淑有禮,但原來內裡是一班敢於挑戰、追求新知識的時代女性。在英識的辦公室中,就有一位Beneden舊生,活現了這種時代女性之感。
Benenden School位於英國東南面,鄰近Tonbridge School,所以兩校之間有不少交流和校際活動。相比起一些主張女校學生不應與男校學生接觸的教育理念,Benenden算是開放得多。
亦因其開明前衛的教學主張,令Benenden在多方面都表現出色。先談成績,Benenden School在2016年A-Level中有74% A*-A的佳績;GCSE A*-A也有83%,成績驕人。學科方面,除了一般寄宿學校都有的科學、外語,亦有Classical Civilisation、宗教研究、演藝及舞台學等。A-Level學生亦可以選擇修讀A-Level Extended Project,發展他們的批判思考、演說能力和寫作能力等。
Benenden School同時透過音樂去開闊學生的思想及陶冶性情。Lower School的女生們 ( 7、8和9年班 ) 每星期都有一節一小時的音樂課;學校樂團多不勝數,有爵士樂隊、搖滾樂團、詩歌班等。每星期五, Benenden School都有「Friday Lunchtime Concerts」讓同學一展音樂才華。可見Benenden School全力將音樂打入女生們的生命之中。
除了比較文靜的音樂活動之外,Benenden School的女生亦積極參與運動。每位同學都會參加超過一項運動,當中Lacrosse ( 袋棍球 ) 更是「全民參與」。「女生們愛互外活動,滑浪風帆、繩降,數得出的都有。」據校方所言,女生的活躍程度不下於其他男校生。
Benenden亦推崇女生在舞蹈方面的發展。根據英國《The Good Schools Guide》的評語,Benenden School的舞蹈室「是我們見過空間最廣闊、彈性最大、設備最齊全最全面的。女生有機會接觸音響設置、燈光和舞台管理等學問,揉合出色的音樂造詣簡直令學校的藝術層次再度昇華。」
Benenden School的女生一反傳統的好靜形象,無論是音樂或運動方面,表現都不下男生。女生們在這宏大的250英畝校園、充滿古典味的維多利亞和都鐸風格建築中學習,難怪英識的Benenden 舊生都以「舊瓶新酒」去形容這所學校。
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Education Experts
With an entrepreneurial spirit spreading across online, print and broadcast media, Samuel is an award-winning educational consultant and celebrated columnist. As a leader in the field of education, he was honoured with the British Council’s Study UK Alumni Award and his most prestigious achievement to date includes the founding of Hong Kong’s premier educational brands - Britannia StudyLink, Anglo Belgravia and Ascent Prep. 

Mabel Chan is the Principal Consultant of Britannia. Having studied in both the UK and the US, she is an expert in school matching for overseas education. She writes education columns for Sing Tao Daily and The Standard, and answers questions arising from parents and students patiently.


MB Cheung, our senior consultant, has been writing education columns for major local newspapers for more than 25 years. With his experience and unique insights, he shares a variety of tips and advice on overseas education for the readers (and DSE students)

#School Analysis
Considering its reputation, Oundle School may not catch up to Eton, Wycombe Abbey and else top elite schools. However, Oundle’s academic performance is among the best in the United Kingdom. As a traditional top boarding school, Oundle pays huge attentions to student’s holistic development, by providing them diversified extra-curricular activities. In addition, Oundle still implements the House Dining System, which is rarely remaining among uk boarding schools. It is also one of the reasons why Hong Kong parents making a beeline for.
The ratio of teachers and students in Bromsgrove School is 1:8, which is lower than the average among uk boarding schools. In addition, according to my school visit experience, Bromsgrove has the best facilities, that it is undoubtedly one of the best three campuses in the UK. Besides, Bromsgrove spares no expense to provide students comfortable environment, it even invests on the nearby hotel and transfers it into dormitories. As a result, students can possess the “5-star enjoyment” on campus. To conclude, Bromsgrove is definitely a prospective and globalised uk boarding school.
Brighton College is Britain’s premier private school and one of the Hong Kong parents’ favourites. To understand a boarding school, despite of looking at its educational tenet, diversified extra-curricular activities and academics results, it is essential to observe the boldness of the principal. 10 years ago, after Mr. Richard Cairns taking up the duty of the Brighton College’s principal, the school ranking raises from the 150th to the top 20th. In addition to promoting educational reformation, Mr Cairns is such a good principal, that he still strives for maintaining students’ curiosity at the same time.
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