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15 - Classroom in the clouds

Pupils from borough schools are working together to help transform the lives of children in rural Nepal.

A local project, led by Sally Sixsmith head teacher at St James’s Primary School, Wollaston, has brought together 18 borough schools to raise vital funds through activities and events, to support Nepalese based charity ‘Classroom in the Clouds’.

The charity was founded in 2007 to improve the prospects of children living in rural areas of Nepal through education. It uses donations to build new classrooms and to sponsor teachers.

The Dudley project, run by St James’s, also aims to establish a teacher exchange programme, with two Nepalese teachers having the opportunity to come and experience school life in England in June 2017.

The money raised by Dudley schools will be used specifically to sponsor a female teacher and then the long-term aim is to build a four classroom school in a remote Himalayan village.

So far St James’s Primary has raised more than £10,000 through various activities including sponsored treks in the schools grounds, non-uniform days and a sponsored sky dive by a member of staff. 

Children at Gigmill Primary have also raised more than £1,000 through a non-uniform day, selling wristbands and a sponsored run by a member of staff.

Sally Sixsmith, head teacher at St James’s Primary School, said:

“During a sponsored trek in the Nepalese Himalayas in 2014, I was lucky enough to meet Dawa Geljen Sherpa, who acted as my guide through the mountains.  He told me all about how he’d founded ‘Classroom in the Clouds’ and truly inspired me to get involved in a project that is changing children’s lives.

“I’m lucky enough to teach in a country where every child has a right to an education and I am proud that children in our schools are passionate about helping those that aren’t as fortunate as themselves.

“This project also gives us the opportunity for our children to learn about life in Nepal and in turn for Nepalese children to learn about our way of life.

“Later this year, my colleague and I look forward to travelling to Nepal to help train local teachers and prepare for the return exchange.  If anyone is interested in supporting the project, I would urge people to get in touch with me via the school.”

Councillor Ian Cooper, cabinet member for children’s services, said:

“Throughout their time at school, it is important children learn about different cultures and life experiences of others.  And in this case, I am delighted children in our schools have been inspired to raise funds to give children in rural Nepal the best possible start in life.  Well done to all those involved.”

Along with St James’s, the following primary schools are supporting the project: Bromley Hills, Caslon, Cradley, Crestwood Park, Foxyards, Gig Mill, The Glynne, Greenfield, Lapal, Lutley, Netherbrook, Olive Hill, Pedmore, Peter’s Hill, The Straits, Woodside and Wren’s Nest.

For more information about the charity go to www.classroomsintheclouds.org

To get involved in the project, call St James’s Primary School on 01384 818810.

News Release Contact Information

Press office, 01384 815219, pressoffice@dudley.gov.uk