THABAZIMBI – The British Council (Global School Partnership) started a collaborative program a few years ago with schools all over the world. The delegation visited Thabazimbi Local Municipality on 29 April 2010. They were warmly welcomed by the Mayor Naledi Lucas Matlou of Thabazimbi Local Municipality. The delegates were accompanied by Mr MA Makwela (Principal of Groenvlei), Mr MP Molapisi(Acting Circuit Manager of Thabazimbi), Mr TM Maponya(Deputy Manager-Governance), Ms S De Wet(DCES), Ms E Mashishi(Principal of Thusanang), Ms Mary O’Hara(St. Matthew’s P.S Northern Ireland-Principal), Mr Marshall Kilgore(Principal-Drumachose Primary School) and Mr Glen Reiley(Principal-Linavady High School-Northern Ireland). This program involves working with education authorities and schools in South Africa and promotes an approach based on school partnerships that provide direct access to the experience, expertise and insights of teachers and learners in both countries. The British Council work with teachers, head teachers and education officials in establishing and developing partnerships with schools in the UK. Assistance with partner finding, guidance materials and advice on personal and professional topics are just some of the features offered. The aim is also curriculum enrichment and the development of innovative educational strategies.
It is increasingly evident that interdependence as well as self-reliance shapes the future. School partnerships are an unbeatable means of providing young people with direct experience of this reality. This is an exciting and innovative way to teach and learn about global development. Teachers and students from the UK and South Africa are being inspired to understand our mutual interdependence and to help each other become active global citizens. Partnerships can also help provide a context for real, topical content across a range of subjects and help teachers and learners to relate to issues of development, global citizenship, cultural understanding and ethical awareness.