Ardingly College and Ifield College celebrate successful partnership projects in Parliament

Staff from Ardingly College and Ifield College joined ministers, shadow ministers, MPs and peers in the House of Commons to celebrate the thousands of successful partnership projects taking place between state and independent schools across the UK.

Thursday, 5th March 2020, 10:10 am
Updated Thursday, 5th March 2020, 10:12 am
The solar car team, made up of students from both colleges

The event was hosted by the all-party parliamentary group (APPG) on independent education.

During the event, the group recognised the ways that schools from different sectors work together to create learning and development opportunities, such as teacher training, setting up and sponsoring new state schools, and careers and higher education workshops and advice.

Speakers at the event included Lord Agnew, parliamentary under-secretary of state for the school system, Andrew Lewer MBE MP, chairman of the APPG on independent education and

Barnaby Lenon, chairman of the Independent Schools Council.

Guests were presented with copies of a report published by the ISC entitled Celebrating Partnerships, which showcases just a handful of the many meaningful partnerships that exist today and features the work of Ardingly College with Ifield Community College.

Having outperformed major universities in the Australian Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2019, the two schools are using their knowledge gained to build a flat pack supplied solar car for the developing world, able to power a small house when not being used for transport.

After the event, Dr Andrew Spiers, director of Ardingly Solar, said: “An educational partnership of this nature, where there is a genuine desire to share both resources and teachers’ enthusiasm and knowledge, greatly increases the learning outcomes of both sets of students.”

Rob Corbett, headteacher of Ifield Community College, said: “The partnership project with Ardingly College has given our students a tremendous and highly educational experience of real-life problem solving in a technological project.

“It has fired their enthusiasm to pursue careers in engineering and high tech solutions, as well as bringing to life the very real need to find alternatives to carbon based fuels.”