24 Aug New British schools to open in Mexico City and Geneva
A new family-run British international school will open in Mexico City next year. The Wingate School is the brainchild of Tom Wingate, a Briton with 30 years of teaching experience in schools around the world, including the City of London School, Wesleyan School in Atlanta and Greengates School in Mexico City.
Mr Wingate will be head teacher at the new establishment, which is a co-educational day school with a focus on the “intellectual, emotional, social and moral development” of each child (wingateschool.mx). His Mexican wife is a diplomat there, and he has lived in Mexico on and off since 1986.
He anticipates that around 30 per cent of students will be foreign, with the rest Mexican. While 80 per cent of lessons will be taught in English, the lessons in Spanish, geography and history will be taught in Spanish.
The school will follow the British early years foundation stage standards for children up to the age of five followed by the international primary curriculum, then the Cambridge IGCSE for 14 to 16 year olds and the International Baccalaureate diploma for 16-19 year olds.
“The fact that we are offering a British curriculum and British English as opposed to American English has a certain cachet,” – Mr Wingate.
Mr Wingate’s son, a maths teacher, and daughter, an admissions and administrator coordinator, will work at the school too.
The establishment will be split over two campuses. The first, for primary children aged five to 10 years, will open in Virreyes in August 2016. The following summer, a second campus will open in Interlomas for four to 18 year olds. Fees will be around 10,000 pesos (approximately £390) per month.
In other news, 41 British international schools run by Hong-Kong based Nord Anglia Education will run a new performing arts curriculum in future in collaboration with the New York-based Juilliard School of dance, music and drama (naejuilliard.school).
According to Andrew Fitzmaurice, chief executive officer at Nord Anglia Education: “Excellence comes from inspiration rather than league tables.”
He added: “The evidence for an education in the arts is clear – learning music can increase academic development, helping students to improve literacy, mathematics and cognitive development. It also helps young people develop cultural literacy and personal skills – from collaboration through to perseverance – which are critical to the modern workplace.”
Nord Anglia has a presence in 16 countries, teaching more than 32,000 students from kindergarten to the end of secondary school.
Among the first 10 schools to roll out a new music curriculum this year are the British International School of Washington, the English International School in Prague, Dover Court International School in Singapore and Regents International School in Pattaya, Thailand.
Children are learning about different genres of music and developing creative skills such as improvisation and composition. They are also benefiting from one-to-one music lessons and workshops and performances hosted by Juilliard’s worldwide network of performers and teachers.
The new curriculum will be put in place at the other campuses over the coming years and be expanded to include drama and dance.
Finally, increasing demand for school places by expats in Switzerland has prompted the Geneva English School, which is currently an early years and primary, to open a new secondary school next September (geschool.ch). This will follow the National Curriculum of England with an international context, and offer IGCSEs.