Education for All at Ringwood School

Posted by Kate Evans Education Marketing & Communications Manager

2nd Jul 2013

Millie and Sam, GCE Young Ambassadors for 2013, tell us about the Education For All day they put on at their school.

Our Campaign to Find 1.7 Million Missing Teachers!

Keen to keep up the pressure on world leaders to find enough teachers and get every child into school, we took advantage of the Steve Sinnott Foundation's Education For All Day on 21 June to introduce the 'Send My Friend' campaign to Year 9 students at Ringwood School.

Teachers are the focus for the 2013 - 2014 campaign as the United Nations estimates that there is a global shortage of 1.7 million teachers, with 1 million professional teachers needed in Africa alone. In the year 2000, world leaders made a promise that every child would receive a quality primary education by 2015. However, there are still over 60 million children missing out on even a basic primary education, with millions more struggling to learn in oversized classes and with unqualified teachers.

The Plan for the Day

We were allowed to take all Year 9 students off timetable for various activities, such as making puppets with key messages on what makes a good teacher and a good school. We were able to share our experiences in the Delhi slums this spring. The school also benefitted from a visit from John McLaverty of Oxfam Education, who accompanied us to Delhi.

The day began with a presentation in all tutor groups that ended with 'Turn on the Light', a short film. Year 9 then went to the hall and lessons began for other years. 

The school languages department supported the campaign by creating their own puppets. They asked the question, "What makes a good teacher?" to students in other year groups, but here students had to answer in German, French or Spanish. The puppets now adorn the entire length of the  languages corridor.

The ladies in the canteen lent got involved in the day by serving Indian food. The Chicken Korma was delicious!

What Makes a Good Teacher?

Year 9 students' views about what makes a good teacher were very different from those of the Delhi students. Top of the Delhi students' lists is that the teachers turn up for lessons - something we take for granted here.

Year 9 students also added their voices by writing letters and a wall of messages. These will be sent to MP Desmond Swayne to pass on to the Prime Minister to remind the UK government of their promise to make sure all children have access to primary education by 2015.

The Global Campaigners

We feel a need to push the Send My Friend campaign to its limits at Ringwood and beyond, and to this end we have been working over the past few weeks with a great group of Year 9 and 10 students who we call the Global Campaigners, and we have shared everything we learnt in Delhi.

We have held weekly meetings and now the Campaigners are really useful in our campaign to get 1.7 million teachers into school.  On June 21st, the team of Global Campaigners were able to help us teach the lessons to Year 9. Each campaigner worked in a tutor group looking at case studies supplied by EFA Day, designing 'ideal teacher' puppets and ideal schools, tweeted and wrote to every politician possible.

Knowing that water is a key issue in Delhi and will become increasingly so, we asked students carry out a audit of their own water use. They then had to calculate how many buckets they would need to carry this much water. Many tested the weight of a water bucket on their head!

Sharing with the Junior Schools

To spread the campaign further, we held a special assembly and workshop sessions for Year 6 students from Ringwood Juniors and Broadstone Middle School who also enjoyed a lunchtime Bollywood session on Ringwood School Radio! We wanted to make sure that as many people as possible get to hear children's stories and the challenges they face in getting a quality education. We visit Burley School tomorrow for a similar exercise, and Poulner School in Ringwood for a workshop near the end of term.  Again, we'll be assisted by the Global Campaigners.

Two of our campaigning friends, Jade Wardle and Amy Whitwham, said: "It was great day. It inspired others and students learnt a great deal. It showed just how lucky we are to live in a country where education is free."

Blog post written by Kate Evans

Education Marketing & Communications Manager

More by Kate Evans

Kate Evans