Celebrating School Partnerships

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Celebrating School Partnerships

Head of External Relations, Caroline  Wren at a Partnerships meeting with St Piers School

Caroline Wren, Head of External Relations at Lingfield College, shares the benefits of partnerships.

As Partnerships Week draws to a close, I just wanted to share why partnerships are so important to us. Partnerships are essential for us here at Lingfield College, and very simply, it is to improve and enrich experiences for our children and those in our local community. It links to our ethos of creating wholesome young people who recognize the contribution they can make to those around us. Partnerships at Lingfield College have increased but the partnership offering has been in existence long before I started looking after partnerships.

When I got involved, I reached out to our local schools met with the Heads of these schools and I didn't really have an agenda per se I just said I wanted to work together to form a genuine two way partnership with the ultimate goal of benefiting all children involved and I'm always very keen to ensure that this is not just a tick box exercise, it has to be meaningful, there is no hierarchy, and nobody has the monopoly on good ideas! Fundamentally it had to be about the children. Partnership activities are varied, sharing staff for specialist subjects, professional development for staff, volunteering opportunities for students or using and sharing facilities, the opportunities are plenty! I would just like to extend a huge thank you to our following partners:

Dormansland Primary School Faye Davies and Mark Cook
Lingfield Primary School Cassie Puplett and Anna Sutton
Felbridge Primary School Hugh Hogan Fleming and Anna Sutton
Oxted Secondary School Kate Stodart and Alexander Matthews

Partnerships extend further than just schools. We have a lovely relationship with St Piers and Young Epilepsy. We are delighted to welcome students from Saint Piers who are studying for GCSE maths and taught by our teachers and use our facilities for PE and Science. In return, Saint Piers have been very kind to us and have facilitated work experience on their farm and we have met just this week to discuss lots of ideas of other things we can collaborate on. Another valuable partnership is with Little Ones at Home run by Hayley Stoner a local parent in the village. Hayley runs a series of online webinars which are hugely popular and effective for parents of young children tackling issues with toddlers from potty training through to bedtime battles. We share these webinars with all our partners, so parents are getting support and in turn children are benefiting.

I love getting out to see all our partners and discussing what works well, what do we need to work on and how we can make things even better, being responsible for partnerships is without doubt one of the favourite parts of my role!