Shirebrook school students ready to put their language skills to test with trip overseas

A Shirebrook school has been “overwhelmed” by students hoping to put their foreign language skills to good use after it announced plans to hold its first oversea trips following the coronavirus lockdown.

By Shelley Marriott
Monday, 10th May 2021, 12:57 pm

Shirebrook Academy takes part in a number of overseas visits and vocational trips each year and made its own piece of history in 2019 when it organised its first-ever exchange visit to France.

However it had to cancel all of its trips, alongside all of its other extra-curricular activities, last year, while sending nearly all of its students home to learn remotely.

Even though they are now back in school it has yet to hold another trip but, with lockdown easing, has announced that it wants to take students to DisneyLand Paris in November and to Barcelona in April next year.

Shirebrook Academy is planning to restart its overseas trips again following the lockdown and has been overwhelmed by the interest from students desperate to go abroad again

The school has held both trips regularly in the past, with students enjoying the rides and the French culture on the Paris trip and visiting landmarks such as the Nou Camp, the Sagrada Familia and Las Ramblas during their visits to Barcelona.

James Edwards, head of modern languages at Shirebrook Academy, said: “Our overseas trips have been a hugely successful in the past and it was a huge shame when we had to cancel all of last year’s visits.

“We were very excited about the prospect of announcing them again but were unsure about what the take-up would be bearing in mind that there is a lot of uncertainty about foreign travel. However, there is a huge buzz of excitement and we could fill the Barcelona trip nearly three times over.

“It’s extremely heartening. Not only does it show how much students want to be able to use their French or Spanish, it’s a sign that they are really keen to start travelling again and get things back to normal after being confined to their homes and communities during lockdown.”

Shirebrook’s foreign exchange visit involved hosting a party of students from the private Bon Accueil school, based in Toulon, in March 2019, followed by a trip to Toulon to stay with French families and learn about life of the French Riviera two months later.