British Council and Kolkata-based South City International School (SCIS) have announced a renewed strategic alliance for English language teaching and learning.
The partnership, which began in 2018, provided easy access to the British Council offerings to SCIS students and supported professional development of the SCIS teachers through British Council teacher training modules.
The two partners on May 9 announced the renewal of this collaboration through which the programme will be scaled up and cover students from a broader age bracket. In addition to this, the British Council’s globally recognised English language programmes for younger students – Summer Camp and Early Years programme – will now be offered at the South City International School.
Over the last four years, 25 middle school teachers of classes VI to VIII have undergone long term training for professional development to improve the standard of teaching at the school. British Council and SCIS have also worked together to extensively coach over 1,300 students in senior school (classes IX to XII) in areas such as group discussions, extemporary speaking, presentation skills and academic writing by incorporating training sessions in the academic timetable.
Barbara Wickham, director India, British Council, said, “We are delighted to extend our partnership with the South City International School. It has been a fruitful association that has helped expand professional opportunities for Kolkata’s youth, and we are glad to scale up the programme to add value to an even broader audience. Through our renewed association and with our new world-class classroom-based programmes we hope to bring back the essence of primary education while also building confidence, creativity, social and communication skills of the young students.”
The summer camp by the British Council will enable an interactive and engaging classroom learning experience for students, and develop their creativity, curiosity, imagination, and communication skills. It will give them the optimal exposure and confidence in storytelling and narration through art, drama and speech. The camp will be held from May 23 to June 6. Students will also receive a certificate on successful completion of the course. This will be the first face-to-face summer camp in 3 years by the British Council in Kolkata.
The soft skill programmes offered by the British Council under the strategic partnership will be supporting the strategies of the National Education Policy 2020.
Wickham said, “The policy (NEP 2020) seems to be very flexible with many positive changes focusing on employability. Our offerings at the British Council will also add value to the learning outcome of the students.”
SCIS founder principal John Andrew Bagul said, “As educators we truly understand that learning never stops. At SCIS we are always finding ways to keep at the cutting edge of teaching methodologies to deliver the best possible learning experience to our students. Our partnership with the British Council has yielded phenomenal results over the years, allowing us to improve our quality of teaching and equipping our students with sharp English skills needed to succeed in a globalised economy. We are looking forward to another positive outcome with the new programmes aimed at helping primary level students.”
“Soft skills are required in every profession. You will have to know how to present yourself, how to deliver a presentation or how to communicate no matter what profession you take up. We, at our school, have been focusing on soft skills and practical knowledge even before the policy was introduced,” he added.
Ravi Todi, director, South City International School and Debanjan Chakrabarti, director East and Northeast India, British Council were also present at the press briefing at South City International School.