Shea O’Connor Combined School, South Africa

St Peter’s is partnered with the Shea O’Connor Combined School in Nottingham Road, in the Midlands area of KwaZulu Natal in South Africa. Our partnership started in 2009 as part of the British Council’s International Inspiration programme and we surpassed our initial goal of improving the participation of girls in PE, mainly because the partnership lit a fire for both schools. Father Shea O’Connor was an Irish priest who worked at the school and was murdered during a burglary at his home and staff and students aim to develop the school to make it the best place for education for local children that is possible.

Since 2012 we have completed three Connecting Classroom projects and have established: an annual focus on the partnership for both schools for one school week (including assemblies to every Year group and tutor reflection every day); an annual non-uniform day to boost funds from the Connecting Classrooms project; regular contact between schools including Skype calls (sometimes between classes) and emails; a variety of teachers involved to varying degrees in both schools; an International Co-ordinator at St Peter’s School; an annual uniform donation drive to boost attendance from very low income families; an annual book donation drive to help to build a lending library; an annual teacher exchange as part of the Connecting Classrooms projects; and a permanent display on a TV at St Peter’s, showing up-to-date information and photos to children in the lunch queue. Furthermore, we have embedded the partnership into the schemes of work for Geography, Maths and PE with Art, Music and MFL hoping to follow, where students across many Year groups use the partnership in lessons.

If you would like to get involved in this exciting and growing partnership, please contact us for more information.