Government to fund foreign exchange trips for thousands of pupils

The UK government is aiming to allow poorer pupils to reap the benefits of foreign trips by launching  a student exchange scheme

Foreign exchanges are set to become more accessible to less advantaged students, thanks to a new government scheme.

As part of the £2.5m scheme, secondary schools will be able to apply for funding in order to send pupils on exchange trips to other countries.

The aim of this is to allow pupils aged 11+ to “experience other cultures and go to places they wouldn’t normally visit”, said education secretary, Damian Hinds.

He added: “As Britain leaves the EU, it’s more important than ever to show how much we value international opportunities.”

The £2.5m could support foreign trips for 2,900 poorer pupils.

Initially, at least, schools with above-average numbers of pupil-premium students will be favoured.

The British Council found that only 39% of state secondary schools currently run exchange programmes at all. For private schools, it’s 77%.

Hinds said: “School exchanges are so valuable, bringing subjects such as modern languages and international history to life, as well as helping pupils develop into confident, independent and well-rounded young people.

“School exchanges are so valuable, bringing subjects such as modern languages and international history to life.

“This investment will help schools who may not have much experience organising trips abroad to ensure their pupils don’t miss out on all the fantastic benefits these experiences can bring.”

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