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Special exchanges celebrate 20 years

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This year marks the 20th anniversary of the French exchange trip for a special school in Spalding.

The Priory School’s first exchange trip launched in 1994 with IME Le Luart Special Federation School in France.

Brian Amess, a pupil who attended the first trip in 1994 when he was only 14 years old, will now see his daughter Alice leaving for the exchange next week.

Mr Amess said: “The French exchange was an exciting trip and it was the first time I had ever been on holiday in my life. It was great fun.”

Alice will accompany 11 other members of her year. She said: “I am really looking forward to the trip and all the activities we will do and improving my skills in French.”

Kate Issacs, the Year 9 teacher who has been organising the trip for the last 18 years, believes the exchange is “a fantastic opportunity for the students to get a feel and understanding of another culture. Each year the students come back as a different person”.

Every year the exchange revolves around a certain theme, with this year’s theme being ‘Transport’.

During their week stay in Spalding, French pupils joined their Lincolnshire counterparts in cycling, rowing, playing football as well as visiting the Romany Museum and taking a ride in the Water Taxi to Springfields.

Pupilshave also taken the train to Peterborough where they visited the museum and Queensgate. In the evening they enjoyed a fun-filled party.

They have also ventured out of the area, visiting the Railway Museum and Jorvik Viking Centre in York. Before their French visitors departed on Friday morning they all enjoyed lots of games in school.

Despite only taking around 12 students each year, the welcoming of the French students to the school proves to be beneficial for the whole school who actively get involved and ultimately learn.

The French exchange has proved to be an exciting and advantageous trip for the last 20 years and will hopefully continue in the future.

 

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