Head to show China why Britain is Great


Michael Goodwin

Sibford School head Michael Goodwin is part of a UK delegation visiting China to showcase the attractiveness of UK boarding school education.

Michael Goodwin is one of just 20 head teachers in the UK selected by the British Council to participate in the mission, part of the GREAT Britain campaign, the Government’s most ambitious international marketing campaign ever.

Michael Goodwin flew out to China on Monday (October 14). During his week-long visit, which will be based in the Guangzhou region, he will conduct media interviews, take part in panel discussions, speak about the benefits of the UK boarding system for Chinese pupils, and visit local schools.  He will also conduct a sample lesson with students aged from 13 – 15 and attend a Memorandum of Understanding signing ceremony.

Before leaving Michael said: “This is an exciting, if somewhat daunting opportunity. To be one of just a handful of head teachers invited to help showcase the attractiveness of UK boarding school education is an honour. I hope that not only will I be able to demonstrate just how good UK education is, but that I will also learn more about what the Chinese expect from schools in the UK.”

Over the next four weeks the GREAT Britain Boarding Mission to China will be visiting a total of four different regions. Each delegation will comprise five head teachers and representatives from the British Council. The Guangzhou delegation, at which Michael Goodwin will be accompanied by head teachers from St Mary’s School in Cambridge, St Teresa’s in Effingham, Culford School in Bury St Edmonds and Oswestry School in Shropshire, is the first in the programme.

The GREAT Britain campaign is part of the Prime Minister’s ‘global race for growth’ and is an international marketing campaign showcasing the very best of what Britain has to offer in order to encourage the world to visit, study and do business with the UK. It supports the UK’s Olympic Legacy programme.

Michael Goodwin’s visit to China follows Banbury MP Tony Baldry’s recent visit to Xishuangbanna, in the Chinese province of Yunnan, to strengthen Cherwell’s link with the district.

Sibford School was established in 1842 as a co-educational boarding school for the children of Quaker families. Today the school welcomes both day pupils and boarders and currently has some 400 pupils, 60 of whom are boarders.

Said Michael Goodwin: “One of the benefits of UK boarding is that we offer the opportunity for overseas students not only to experience a British education and British lifestyle, but also the chance to integrate both with domestic students and students from elsewhere in the world. This integration is important and it’s why, here at Sibford, we limit our number of overseas pupils to a maximum of eight per cent of the total school population and ensure that we have students from a number of different countries.”

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