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Teacher trainees and local pupils reap benefits of new uni exchange programme – University of Reading

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Teacher trainees and local pupils reap benefits of new uni exchange programme

Release Date 05 June 2009

Earlier this year, the University of Reading was delighted to be the only UK University to be chosen by the Ministry of Education in Singapore, for an important new teacher training exchange programme.

The International Student Teacher Exchange Programme aims to offer an inspiring and educational experience through the sharing of good practice in teacher training.

Three University of Reading students on teacher training courses within the Institute of Education recently flew back from Singapore, where they spent a fascinating and enjoyable three weeks teaching music, drama and history in a Singapore School.

Now, their Singapore counterparts are spending three weeks teaching art, music and physics to pupils at Maiden Erlegh School. On Wednesday 10 June trainee drama teacher Hayley Butler who went to Singapore, will visit her exchange colleagues at the School to discuss the programme as well as sit in on one of the lessons.

Hayley Butler said: "The Anglo-Chinese college was the best place I could have been at. Although challenging, it took me out of my comfort zone and made me address areas where I am less confident. I believe it made me a much more secure and competent teacher. I'm looking forward to going to Maiden Erlegh on Wednesday and sharing my fantastic experience."

Winston Brookes, Director of the Graduate Teacher Programme, who accompanied the trainees in Singapore, said: "It provided an excellent experience for our trainees of an impressive educational system where teachers are keen to learn from what we can offer. We were received warmly by the Ministry of Education and all the schools involved. We met at least three former Reading graduates who are now teaching in Singapore and who had very fond memories of their undergraduate dates at the University."

The Institute of Education has good links with more than 300 local schools and enjoys a strong partnership with Maiden Erlegh. The School's pupils are benefiting from the knowledge and experiences of the trainees as well as learning about a different culture.

Reading's quality of teacher training, evident in its high ranking and Ofsted reports, was instrumental in the University being chosen for the programme.

Director of the University of Reading's Institute of Education Professor Andy Goodwyn said: "The Singapore education system is one of the highest performing systems in the world and its teachers are excellent. This partnership provides a wonderful enrichment experience for our trainees and for their's, and we expect it will lead to staff exchanges, professional development opportunities and joint research projects."

Ends

For all University of Reading media enquiries please contact James Barr, Press Officer tel 0118 378 7115 or email j.w.barr@reading.ac.uk

Notes for Editors:

The University of Reading's Institute of Education is a major provider of teachers nationally and regionally, offering PGCE Secondary and Primary, BA (Ed) and the Graduate Teacher Programmes (GTP). The secondary programme and the primary programme have both received the top Ofsted grades in 2006/7 and the Institute is now a category 'A' provider for all our courses. The employment rates of graduates are the highest in the University and the best in the country of any initial teacher training provider.

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