In 2008 I first experienced the world of Summer Schools. I was going to New Zealand to work as a Sports Coach on my placement year from university, and with a few free weeks before I was due to leave the UK, I decided to apply to be an Activity Leader at Dean Close Summer School. I’d always worked with children, coming from a background in Sports Coaching, and was attracted to the role because of the unique challenges of working residentially and with international students. What a fantastic choice! I worked at the school for 3 weeks leading a variety of activities such as Silly Olympics, Talent Shows and Pool Parties. It was a truly enjoyable experience! The following year, on returning from my time abroad I immediately returned to work for Summer Boarding Courses again at Dean Close. I had another fantastic summer, full of exciting challenges, great kids and a brilliant staff team.
The following summer, 2010, I had the opportunity to work at one of our newer schools, Norman Court, and I jumped at the chance. With my added experience I took on the role of Activity Manager, which enabled me to coordinate the programme of afternoon and evening entertainment for the students. The school proved to be fantastic for our 8-12 year old age group, with big open spaces, and a stately home for accommodation. We launched a variety of different activities including Capture the Flag, Treasure Hunts and our English Fete afternoon complete with bouncy castles and inflatable slides. I found working at a school for our younger students immensely rewarding. With many of the children being away from home for the first time, it was amazing to see their transformation over the course of just a few weeks. Often nervous, timid children with little or no English would leave the school as confident and energetic students fully participating in lessons and activities.
In 2011 I took on the role of Centre Manager for the next two years at the school. One of the most rewarding elements of this was seeing so many students returning to us, or going on to one of our other SBC schools for older students, and seeing how much they have developed over a period of just a few years!
I am delighted to say I will be joining the Head Office SBC Family in January to coordinate one of our new schools, Abberley Hall in Worcestershire. Following the sad closure of the main school at Norman Court last year, Abberley Hall will now be catering for young students aged 8 – 12 years old. I will be using all the experience that we have gained from Norman Court to ensure that Abberley Hall provides all our students with an unforgettable experience and we are excited about recreating the Norman Court magic at Abberley Hall. The idyllic setting at Abberley Hall makes the school an incredibly safe and friendly environment for children to come and stay. We aim to help all our students to improve their English and grow in confidence but more than that too – we want to provide the experience of a life-time!
Will – Director of bookings