Harwich International Port was pleased to donate a cheque for ¢G4,000 to The Harwich School on Wednesday 30th October 2002, as part of its ongoing commitment to the development of the Language College at the school.
In 1999, Harwich International Port was approached for sponsorship by The Harwich School, which was undergoing a year-long fundraising campaign to enable it to become a Language College.
To be eligible for Language College status, the school had to provide evidence of unconditional private sponsorship, to the value of ¢G100,000. Under the ‘Specialist Schools Programme’, this then unlocked Government funding, totalling ¢G1,000,000 over nine years.
After hearing of the school’s campaign, Harwich International Port was delighted to help, with sponsorship of ¢G2,000 every year, for three years (2000/2001/2002).
The school, a mixed comprehensive with 1,150 pupils, succeeded in its bid to become a designated Language College in 2000, and was one of only 99 schools nationally to win the prized status. Refurbishment and purchasing of new equipment took place during the 2000 summer vacation, and an old school block was transformed into a series of modern, state-of-the-art language laboratories. The new facilities were officially opened on 13th November 2000 by Jacqui Smith MP, then Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Schools Standards.
The new classrooms boast improved acoustics, a central role-play area and video-conferencing room, with white-board technology. The Language College not only benefits its students, but is also available to the community for adult education and business language courses.
Speaking at the cheque presentation, which covers the Port’s donation for 2001/2002, Terry Davies, Divisional Manager of Harwich International Port, said:
“Harwich International Port is delighted to have been able to support The Harwich School in its development as a Language College over the last three years. It is vital that children in particular have the opportunity to develop their knowledge of different languages and cultures, and it is fitting that Harwich International Port, with its close European and Scandinavian links, should assist the local community in this way.”
Lynne Gettings, Language College Co-ordinator at the school, commented:
“The Harwich School is immensely grateful for the financial support given to us by Harwich International Port, and also for their commitment to our Language College status. The new opportunities available because of the additional funding are benefiting students of all ages and abilities. Spanish teaching is now established within the school up to GCSE: 200 students participated in visits abroad last year; the number of our primary partner schools studying languages has increased and parents have enjoyed taster sessions in a range of languages.”
Ms. Gettings added:
“As a Language College, The Harwich School has a key role at the heart of a community with international links.”