Education news from Kent's schools and colleges

All the latest from Kent's schools and colleges in May

All the latest from Kent’s schools and colleges in May

Olympic dreams

Kent schoolchildren will join millions of other young people experiencing the magic of the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games during Lloyds TSB National School Sport Week.

From 28 June to 2 July, Britain’s biggest ever school sporting event – a week that aims to use the power of London 2012 to inspire children to take part in more sport and physical activity – will take place across schools in England and Wales. 

Delivered with the Youth Sport Trust, Lloyds TSB National School Sport Week was a resounding success in 2009, with more than 10,500 schools and three million children taking part.  In 2010, the week promises to be even bigger and better with Bank of Scotland National School Sport Week coming to Scotland for the first time from 7-11 June. 

How to get involved:

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�— All primary and secondary schools in Kent can register at 

�— Registered schools will receive a free teacher planning and activity pack, full of ideas to help plan their week and ensure the whole school can get involved.

�— Schools will help their pupils to try a new Olympic or Paralympic sport and live the Olympic and Paralympic Values. They will also be organising opening and closing ceremonies plus inter and intra-school competitions.

�— Young people will be invited to make a Sports Pledge, creating a short or long-term measurable goal, to be fulfilled either before or during the week. 

Ration books and gas masks

Students at Sutton Valence Preparatory School, near Maidstone, stepped back 60 years for a re-enactment of life during the Second World War.

With visits from Utility Jude and the WRVS, plus a session spent making boxes for their gas masks, the children in Year 6 learned all about life on the Home Front - and were well-prepared should the sirens have sounded.

Berets, tanks tops and baggy shorts were the order of the day and the pupils all ate wartime food – suitably rationed – and learned how children were evacuated to homes in the country, as bombs rained down on cities and downs throughout Britain.

The school field was set up as a military outpost, with examples of wartime vehicles, weapons and uniforms, and pupils also made children’s identity cards, wrote telegrams and packed their suitcases ready for evacuation.

Step into dance

Swept up in the dance fever sweeping the country, more than 100 secondary schools across 13 London boroughs, including Bromley, are starring in a series of Step into Dance events.

Launched by the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) and funded by the Jack Petchey Foundation, Step into Dance is a fully inclusive community dance programme. The project, which involves 13 borough events, culminates in Step LIVE! on 11 July at Sadlers Wells, which will showcase the most talented and exciting school groups across all London boroughs.

This year a record-breaking 2,000 students are taking part in the programme, including 154 from Charles Darwin, Darrick Wood, Hayes, Kemnal Technology College, Marjorie McClure, Priory, Ravens Wood and Riverside in Bromley.

Since January 2007, Step into Dance has encouraged participation in dance from students aged 11-16 by offering free weekly classes in a diverse fusion of dance styles including ballet, Bollywood, contemporary, jazz, street dance and musical theatre, regardless of experience and ability.

Story time

Reception classes at Sutton Valence Preparatory School were transformed into one gigantic fairy story as children - and Reception staff – came to school dressed as fairytale characters. 

Several Snow Whites and Little Red Riding Hoods came face to face with knights, princes, pirates, fairies and wolves as their imaginations ran riot.

The children took part in fairytale workshops, including wand, crown and mask making and cooking ‘poisonous’ toffee apples. Each class thought up their own fairytale based around the characters they had come dressed as.

In the afternoon, the children enjoyed a fairytale ball and banquet, featuring fairy cakes and grape juice served in goblets.

Queens of debate

After a fierce day of debate in Tunbridge Wells, students from Faversham’s Queen Elizabeth Grammar School emerged victorious, chosen as south east debating champions by prestigious judges.

The Faversham students saw off stiff competition by debating contemporary issues such as are clinical trials in developing countries exploitative and should there be any limits on artistic expression?

They took on Godalming College, Surrey, in the final and successfully argued against the motion ‘Attempts to extend radically the human lifespan should be welcomed not feared’.

Yasmin Dunkley, currently studying History, Politics, French and German at Queen Elizabeth’s, was also awarded the prize for the best individual debater. Yasmin, who aspires to join the Foreign Office, attributed the victory to the growing culture of debate at her school, which is seeing large numbers of pupils join the debating society.

The team won a place in the Three-day Debating Matters Competition National Final in London in July, together with subscriptions to Encyclopaedia Britannica and �1,000 worth of Hodder Education books for their school.

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