English UK South Launch
English UK South launches in Bournemouth on 30 November 2018
The official launch of English UK South took place in Bournemouth last week with representatives from language schools in Dorset and Hampshire.
English UK South, which is made up of 20 language schools located in Bournemouth, Christchurch, Poole, Portsmouth, Winchester, Swanage and Southampton, had an initial first meeting of potential members in May this year and since then a working party chaired by Simon Freeman has driven the group forward. Simon, previously Principal of Westbourne Academy in Bournemouth, said, "It is the right time to do this and there has been a lot of interest at the meetings. We've already had expressions of interest from around 30 institutions, with the hope being that more will join us in time."
The launch was also attended by Sarah Cooper , Chief Executive of English UK, who said that all regions in the UK are now covered by their own regional group, apart from English UK South East, which was in the pipeline. She said that the regional groups were extremely valuable for members and hoped that representatives from each would be able to attend the annual StudyWorld conference in September.
The aims of the group include joint marketing campaigns in order to promote the region in a cost effective manner as well as regional training sessions in a bid to encourage best practice in the industry. "We hope to reduce travel costs for our members and make sure that training is relevant to our region and members," said Simon. "Time and money are always issues for centres, and it's often difficult to travel further afield."
The launch event included talks by Vincent Smidowicz, Regional Account Manager at Cambridge Assessment English; Mark Henebury, ELT Specialist, Education Team, Department for International Trade; Roy Cross, Principal Consultant, Partnerships & Evaluation, English for Education Systems at the British Council and Tobias Ellwood, MP for Bournemouth East and Current Under Secretary of State at the Ministry of Defence.
Tobias Ellwood praised the work of language schools in the region for bringing jobs and wealth for local people. He himself studied in an International School in Vienna and he stressed that it was important for educators to instil an international outlook into the younger generation, particularly when it came to being tolerant of other people's differences.
Bethan Norris Senior Editor
Study Travel Magazine