Kingsford Community School

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Impressing international audiences with linguistic talent and cultural understanding

Once again, Kingsford Community School pupils have performed exceptionally highly in a number of international competitions, securing top results and attracting the attention of international media.

Year 10 Kingsford pupil Homaira was the Greater London winner for Mandarin in the 2022 Anthea Bell Prize for Young Translators, organised by University of Oxford, while Year 9 pupil Cherry also secured a commendation in her category. The prize celebrates exceptional linguistic ability, aiming to promote language learning across the UK and inspire creativity in the classroom.

In the recent 2022 'Chinese Bridge' Mandarin Speaking Competition for UK Secondary Schools, meanwhile, organised by CLEC UK (Chinese Center for Language Education and Cooperation) and supported by the Education Section of the Chinese Embassy and the British Council, Kingsford pupils took 1st prize in both individual and group categories. A total of 63 schools across the UK took part in the demanding online event, with independent judges looking “for real communication and presentation, not rehearsed performance” and “someone who has really got to grips with the Mandarin language appropriate to their level of learning.” Kingsford’s Tayiba in Year 9 pupil took 1st prize for the best Individual performance in her category, while Year 8 pupils Gianina, Sean, Fatoumata and Amadeja, and Year 10 pupils Elizabeth, Matas, Joshika, Khadija and Nazmia all came out on top with their group performances.

These competitions are just two examples of Kingsford Community School supporting the “Chinese bridge” and providing pupils with outstanding opportunities for personal development. As the first Confucius Classroom in the country, and voted the best Confucius Classroom in the world, Kingsford Community School maintains a special relationship with CLEC and the British Council through the International School Award. These links are of exceptional quality and provide pupils with opportunities to develop their talents and interests.

In celebration of Kingsford’s pioneering work in harnessing Mandarin teaching to support pupils’ future employability, journalists from Chinese broadcasting company CGTN filmed our pupils speaking about how important Mandarin is to their future aspirations and the future of our world. The online broadcast formed part of the media’s coverage of the celebrations for the 50th Anniversary of the Establishment of China-UK Ambassadorial Diplomatic Relations.

"I would like to be a businessman myself," Year 11 pupil Benjamin tells CGTN, "and I believe Mandarin will be a big help due to the economic state of the world and also just knowing a different language could develop my connections with other people."

In her recent piece entitled “China is the future”, a visiting journalist from Xinhua news agency also praised Kingsford’s innovative, personalised teaching methods and “language learning fever” with high numbers of pupils across the school taking up Mandarin. 

“I am incredibly proud, not only of our competition winners, but of every single one of our pupils who embrace the exciting international opportunities available to them at Kingsford”, says Head Teacher Joan Deslandes OBE. “These results are further proof that Kingsford pupils experience a transformational international experience, preparing them to be linguistically competent, culturally informed, and highly employable global citizens.”


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