School life: International pupils descended on Ryburn High

The students had a great time taking part in activities and exploring the region
The students had a great time taking part in activities and exploring the region

Ryburn Valley High School had a distinctly international atmosphere in March, when over 50 students and teachers from schools in Portugal, Poland, Finland, Romania and Italy spent a week there as part of an exchange.

The visit, which was funded and arranged as part of the Erasmus+ programme, focussed on developing entrepreneurial skills and gave pupils the chance to learn about and experience other cultures first hand.

Groups of students from Ryburn already had chance to visit the other five countries, staying with families and exploring the regions, and this was the chance to return that hospitality.

In school, students competed in the ‘Great Erasmus+ Bake Off’, where teams pitted their countries’ speciality cakes against each other to see which would raise the greatest profit at a bake sale (winner: Portugal). They also formed international teams to create a marketing pitch and film a video advert for a product, and took part in a workshop led by the University of Huddersfield about using social media for journalism.

You may have come across students quizzing local retailers in Hebden Bridge to learn lessons about running an independent business, and how they managed to survive the devastating boxing day floods.

Ryburn teacher Mr Fantom, who was one of the team behind the week’s activities, said “we tried hard to organise real-life learning activities to get the students stuck straight into practical activities that would challenge them to problem solve, to work as teams and to put their entrepreneurial skills to the test. Given the mixture of ages, and their very limited shared language, it’s fantastic how well everyone worked together and what they were able to achieve.”