The last year has undoubtedly been one of the most challenging in memory for people from all walks of life and from all corners of the world. As an international business, Educatius Group continues to face unprecedented complexities due to the ever-changing landscapes of global travel and education during a pandemic.
Despite the unusual circumstances, Educatius UK and Ireland has been fortunate enough to continue safely enrolling students on our high school exchange programmes. Working within the national guidelines and strictly following national Covid-19 health regulations in both the UK and Ireland, we have been delighted to welcome over 600 international high school students from 22 countries since August 2020.
Although fantastic progress has been made in the development and roll-out of vaccines, all areas of the UK and Ireland currently find themselves under national lockdown restrictions including school closures. As a result of this, our high school exchange students currently in the UK and Ireland are now respecting the national ‘stay at home’ rules and are continuing their schooling online from the comfort and safety of their host family home.
With the current lockdown measures set to remain in place until March at the earliest, it is certainly a challenging time for everyone. However, after the success of our BaseCamp programmes in August and January for newly arrived students required to quarantine at home for 14 days, we were inspired to create something fun and interactive to help our student community during this period of winter lockdown.
During a lockdown it’s more important than ever to stay connected and make time for the things you enjoy and our 100% free 100% online Student Enrichment Programme has provided just that- a way for Educatius UK & Ireland students to socialise, collaborate, create and learn. At a time when everyone needs a boost, we have been delighted to offer this unique and exciting programme for our international students as a way to provide them with extra support and new opportunities to enrich their exchange experience.
Each week the programme (which is hosted on Slack) includes live social student community events after school hours, academic courses and unique special interest clubs run by Educatius staff, plus a selection of fun and educational extra-curricular resources for students to enjoy at their leisure
In the first 2 weeks of the programme, Educatius UK & Ireland students have enjoyed:
- ‘Speed Mate-ing’ on Glimpse- A fun live event to match, meet and chat with other exchange students through speed video calls
- Covideo Parties – Community film nights with live online discussions
- Cambridge English Assessment Course run by Mark Hellyer, Academic Manager
- Lockdown Photography Club – Students learn about a new British or Irish photographer each week, are set a brief and have their work showcased on Instagram @educatiusphotographyclub
- Live competitions and quizzes with prizes to be won
- The Great Educatius Bake Off – Weekend home baking competition culminating in the student community choosing the winning ‘Star Baker’
- Spotify shared playlists and music projects
- Yoga classes and fitness classes via Zoom
- Educatius Global Table – International recipe sharing club
- Educatius Fantasy Football League
- Joystick Warriors Gaming Club
- Criminology Central – Weekly lectures on criminology theory with combined reading, film and TV recommendations
- Coding Club
- Happy Healthy Minds – Mindfulness, meditation and relaxation resources
- Travel Writing Club
Eabha Doherty, Student Enrichment Programme Manager, says, “We all know how difficult life during a national lockdown can be, so Educatius UK & Ireland is delighted to be able to provide this unique programme at a time when our international exchange students need it most. The Enrichment Programme truly offers something for everyone and has been a real hit amongst our diverse student community. The wellbeing of our students is our number one priority so it is our pleasure to provide these fantastic young people with unique opportunities to socialise, learn and connect with each other online until they are safely permitted to do this again in person.”