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星期四 2016年9月29號

【SCMP Education Post:Boarding Insider】Three sizzling schools right by the British coastline

Educated just a few miles from the North Norfolk Coast myself, I am only too aware of the wonders a coastal setting can do for a child’s peace of mind, physical development, all-round enjoyment and inquisitive nature at boarding school. Here I look at three schools which make the most of their advantageous settings to deliver an enriching curriculum to their pupils …


When narrowing down UK boarding school choices, Hong Kong parents do not have to be so fixated on league tables, exam results and sending children to the most famous public schools. There are several boarding schools hugging Britain’s coastline which are no slouches in the academic department and with a capacity to offer alternative enrichment programmes which revolve around watersports. The atmosphere, too, at schools and colleges by the sea generally have a hint of the laid-back about them. Let us look at three schools which could see Hong Kong children skimming stones into the sea or having a laid-back revision session on the beach come the sunny month of May:


Roedean School

Located in Roedean village, right on the outskirts of the popular seaside town of Brighton and just a short walk to Brighton Marina, Roedean School educates girls aged 11-18. The School is located on a cliff and offers splendid views of Brighton Marina and the English Channel.


Roedean champions the idea of offering a package which “is much more than just work”. Not a school to get bogged down with league tables and academic results, Roedean focuses on providing an “all-embracing” education, preferring to value every single individual rather than a select few. At Roedean, a holistic education really does mean honing pupils’ interpersonal skills and offering them a wealth of memorable experiences.


Roedean does have a large number of day pupils yet boarding at the School is an extremely pleasant experience. Moreover, there are over 200 girls on site at the weekends. Exceptionally high standards of care, a convivial atmosphere in boarding houses and a vast array of inter-house competitions and events in drama, music and sport, all work together to ensure that girls are extremely happy.


Roedean’s co-curricular programme is excellent with girls in the lower years experiencing HHH. HHH stands for Head, Heart, Hand and the programme encourages girls to step out of their comfort zones and try something new, such as learning Russian, Sign Language or taking Cookery classes.


All in all, Headmaster, Mr Oliver Blond, has got Roedean ticking along nicely and the 2016 Independent Schools Inspectorate inspection report would seem to confirm my sentiments.


Plymouth College

Plymouth College is located in the town of Plymouth, Devon, and is for day and boarding pupils from the ages of 3 to 18. The College is co-educational.


In an academic sense, the College affords tremendous breadth and depth to pupils with plenty of subjects to choose for GCSE/IGCSE examinations. The IB Diploma is also available as is the BTEC Extended Diploma in Sport for the many sport-minded individuals who are attracted to Plymouth College.


It would be unfair to say that Plymouth College is all about enrichment but certainly activities are almost too numerous to mention. Given the College’s location, kayaking is popular, while training courses are given in outdoor survival. Outdoor Education is a prominent fixture in Plymouth’s curriculum, with the College’s push the provision of a holistic education never seeming to falter. Budding snooker players from Hong Kong may also be interested to learn that the College has access to a local club’s facilities in the autumn and spring terms. 


Plymouth College is internationally recognised for developing its own day and boarding students into Olympic and World champions. It is able to do this through a scholarship scheme perhaps better described as The Plymouth College/Plymouth Leander partnership. Of course, athletes gain a first-class education as well as top-class swimming training.


The Royal Hospital School

Located due south of Ipswich, The Royal Hospital School is a 11-18 co-educational school with naval traditions.


Perhaps the School is not as “coastal” as Plymouth College and Roedean, but it is still worthy of consideration due to its unique seafaring heritage and the excellent provision for sailing at a nearby reservoir.


Royal Hospital has a long tradition for musical excellence, something else Hong Kong parents may wish to consider. The School’s Music School is truly state-of-the-art, while the curriculum for years 7-9 emphasises practical music making quite strongly.


Just a short mention of Royal Hospital, but Hong Kong families are encouraged to find out more about this wonderful school keen on upholding its heritage and traditions.


All in all, three quite different schools in terms of atmosphere, traditions, academic provision and sporting priorities.


Origianl article: http://www.educationpost.com.hk/resources/education/160929-overseas-education-uk-three-sizzling-schools-right-by-the-british-coastline


1 寄宿百科 2 英國大學
3 談英國 4 赴英須知
5 赴英遊學 6 選校攻略
7 留英所得 8 親子關係
9 英名校大比拼 10 留英專家分享

陳思銘(Samuel Chan) 並非如一般外界人所認為的「富二代留學生」,家人數代都在流浮山經營海鮮買賣,父母學歷程度雖然不高,但努力工作賺錢把Samuel從小(9歲)就供養到英國寄宿學校格雷舍姆學院 (Gresham College)讀書,才能讓他早早就體會到英式教育優越全世界的原因。
Samuel Chan在留英之前亦都曾苦於在香港的教育體系中掙扎求存,但是香港朝令夕改的教育制度卻令他的成續止步不前,甚至感到老師也對自己失去興趣。直到接受英式教育後,他深深感受到兩地學制的差異:在英國,永遠是先發掘學生的興趣,再透過「興趣」作為推動其學習的原動力,釋放潛能。在英國,他獲得了使自己能夠表達自己並嘗試新事物的信心,最終以優秀的成續升讀英國頂尖的學府。
Samuel Chan留英長達15年,在諾定咸大學(University of Nottingham)獲得經濟學學士後,在華威大學(The University of Warwick)攻讀完政治經濟系碩士後回流香港。回流香港的Samuel鑑有感於香港教育制度無法充分釋放學生潛力,於是回流英國的他創辦了英識教育,以幫助更多有志留學英國的同學提供各類支援及顧問服務。
白手興手固然辛苦,但奮鬥數年英識教育終獲香港品牌發展局頒發「香港服務名牌」的升學教育中心,亦是同業首間獲此認證的品牌。後來,Samuel於2017年奪得「英國傑出校友獎」,該獎是英國文化協會及多家英國高等院校的共同構思,並由英國文化協舉辦,評選活動獲不少名人及王室人員支持及參與。可見,讓身為香港人的「陳思銘」的名字深深烙印在英國學術界傑出人仕的陳列櫃中。雖然事業受到肯定,但Samuel並不安於現狀,後來在2020年更創立Britannia Gateway 的學術培訓平台,提供更多元化的課程以幫助客戶適應英國課程。

論名氣,Oundle 未追得上 Eton、Wycombe Abbey 等頂級名校,但學校的學術成績在英國依然名列前茅。作為傳統名校,Oundle 非常重視全人發展,為學生提供多元課餘活動選擇。學校奉行英國碩果僅存的 House Dining System,或是令香港家長趨之若鶩的一大原因。
Bromsgrove 的師生比例是一比八,比一般的寄宿學校低。此外,綜合我曾到訪的學校,此校硬件設施之完善,可入選全英設備最佳的三大校園。校方不惜工本為學生提供舒適環境,甚至收購附近的酒店改建成宿舍,令宿生有名符其實的「五星級享受」。此校極具前瞻性,是國際化的英國宿校。
Brighton College 是英國首屈一指的私校,是香港家長最愛的寄宿學校之一。 看一間學校,除了教育宗旨、多元化活動、成績之外,更要看校長的魄力。十年前,校長 Mr. Richard Cairns 成為 Brighton College 校長後,把學校由全英國接近 150 名推至首 20 名。除了在教育方針上大力推動改革之外,也為了保持學生的求知慾而非常努力,是難得的好校長。
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