As the UK-China relationship continues to strengthen, Wellington College International Shanghai, the second international school establishedby the UK’s Wellington College, has held its first “WellingTEN Talks” session on April 18th. The series of short presentations and discussions involved leaders in education reflecting on current issues in education. Participants in the first session included Julian Thomas, Master of Wellington College; Ni Ruiming, Master of Shanghai Pudong High School; and Gerard MacMahon, Master of Wellington College International Shanghai. The panelists discussed what schools should do to cultivate pupils’ individuality, prepare pupils to be successful in life and how to prepare pupils to meet current global challenges.
“WellingTEN Talks” is a Wellington College tradition. A WellingTEN Talk is a formula to deliver inspiring ideas in a short time, engaging audiences by highlighting areas for further intellectual development and exploration. As the first “WellingTEN Talks” in China, the theme of the session was "A Proud Tradition, Educating for the Future – the importance of making education global". The event aimed to take advantage of the “golden age” in China-UK relations, discussing the urgency and importance of cultivating the next generation of 21st century international leaders.
Mr. Julian ThomasAt the seminar, Julian Thomas, the 14th Master of Wellington College UK, outlined Wellington’s method for cultivating future leaders, "At Wellington College, we uphold the Wellington aptitudes, which means we have a determined and deliberate focus on producing well-rounded and balanced pupils. We firmly believe the essence of education lies in bringing out the inherent talents of children in all areas, allowing a pupil to become the best version of his or her self. Over their period of studying we develop their eight aptitudes, including moral and spiritual, cultural and physical, logical and linguistic, social and person aspects. We believe that if those aptitudes can be developed to the greatest extent they will have the basic skills needed to become international leaders in the 21st century." Master Julian Thomas went on to say, "Wellington College has a global orientation to be outward-facing and forward-thinking, passing on to Wellington pupils the aptitudes of a diverse education, and providing opportunities for different cultural and educational exchanges. By providing the world's best education for pupils, we hope that our pupils are inspired, intellectual, independent, individual, and inclusive. Pupils with these identities will stand tall in the 21st century."
Mr. Ni RuimingNi Ruiming, Master of Shanghai Pudong High School, who has 20-year of experience in school management, said, "In the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) test, the most influential worldwide study in global education, Shanghai pupils have ranked first for two consecutive terms. This achievement shows the strength of primary education in Shanghai. We are pleased to say that we place an equal importance on continuous self-improvement. However, we are also aware that Shanghai pupils are under great pressure, and display a limited capacity for innovation and problem solving. ”
Mr. Gerard MacMahonGerard MacMahon, Master of Wellington College International Shanghai, who has served for 12 years as the school master of schools in the UK and Middle East, stressed the advantages of the Shanghai campus while talking about the importance of international education, “Shanghai is one of the most internationalised cities in China. Pupils have free access to world class culture and lifestyle, which lays a good cognitive foundation for becoming international leaders. In addition, Wellington’s curriculum in Shanghai is designed so that all pupils become well-rounded adults, well equipped with the skills, knowledge, attitudes and values essential to meet the challenges of society in the 21st century.” Julian Thomas also mentioned that one of the major goals of the Wellington College is to build upon the success of their overseas schools. He reaffirmed Wellington’s intention to look for new opportunities and to expand into new territories, whilst taking the lead in advancing international education.