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October 07, 2009

African maths teachers learn from Coventry schools

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Four teachers from South Africa received a warm welcome to Warwick this week, as they embarked on a two-week programme to experience teaching practices in the UK.

The teacher exchange forms part of a wider project named ‘Warwick in Africa’, originating in 2006 when the University of Warwick sent 12 maths students to teach in suburban and township schools across Johannesburg with the aim of making a positive contribution in Africa. The scheme has proved such a success that last year organisers decided to bring a group of African educators over to Britain to learn British methods of teaching.

This year’s participants, Mr Frank Phalane, Ms Phumzile Mthiyane, Ms Palesa Mazibuko and Mr Elliot Banda, all teach maths to secondary school pupils in Johannesburg and are hoping to take a wealth of educational knowledge and experiences away with them.

Mr Elliot Banda said: “We are all delighted to be able to take part in the Warwick in Africa teacher exchange programme. We hope to learn new methods of teaching Maths during our time here, which can be shared with our colleagues and learners back in South Africa.

“We want to explore the English curriculum as compared to the South African one, and have already noticed that there are new topics in our curriculum which have been taught for many years in England.

“We have had very useful discussions with teachers in local primary schools and academics from the University of Warwick, and have experienced first-hand how teachers use advanced technology to help them teach (including, interactive whiteboards, laptops and projectors, etc).”

During the programme, the four teachers will spend time visiting a number of local schools including, Grange Farm Primary School, Coundon Court School, Finham Park School, Westwood School, Tudor Grange School and Caludon Castle School.

But it is clear that the project would not be able to go ahead if it wasn’t for the continued generosity and financial support from friends and alumni of the University, companies, foundations and trusts.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Nigel Thrift said: “The first year’s work was funded entirely by the philanthropic support of alumni and friends of the University of Warwick, and one donor in particular.

“With extra funding secured from the Barclays Capital Foundation in 2007, Warwick managed to double the number of students we sent to South Africa and gathered the resources to expand beyond South Africa to send a group of students to teach in the schools of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. We now bring teachers from South Africa over to Britain to experience UK teaching.

“This project reaffirms Warwick’s commitment to access to education and its international vision. Assisting the education of school children in South Africa in this way means Warwick can really make a difference.”

Notes to editors

• The ‘Warwick in Africa’ teaching project has been set up to enable University of Warwick students who have completed their teacher training or taken part in the Student Associate Scheme in the Warwick Institute of Education to teach maths in schools in Africa. In 2009, for the fourth consecutive year, maths and science students from the University of Warwick will work in schools in Alexandra and Soweto

• The four teachers will be at University of Warwick between 27th September and 10th October 2009

• Activities include the following: visiting schools for 11 – 18 years old in the vicinity of the University to look at the UK National Curriculum for maths, resources and teaching methods, holding discussions with staff and pupils and observing lessons; seeing how maths teachers are trained in the UK; visiting primary schools to look at the primary curriculum for maths and how it feeds secondary curriculum to ensure effective transition from primary to secondary education; meeting faculty staff in the Institute of Education to discuss teaching methods; meeting staff from the Mathematics Institute with specialisms in teaching; meeting staff from the wider university community; and cultural activities including visiting the theatre, historic buildings etc

• Funding for the programme comes from friends and alumni of the University of Warwick and various companies, foundations and trusts including, Barclays Capital and the ExPat Foundation. Anyone wishing to make a donation should contact Mary McGrath via email at:

• Further information on ‘Warwick in Africa’ can be found at:

For further information please contact:

Natalie Field, Assistant Press Officer

Communications Office, University of Warwick, Coventry, CV4 8UW


Tel: +44 (0)24 7657 5601 Mobile/Cell: +44 (0)7824 541 142

September 10, 2009

Student wins award for contribution to Coventry’s medieval heritage

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A University of Warwick research student has been recognised for his significant contribution to Coventry’s medieval heritage after winning a university award.

January 09, 2009

One of Wolverhampton’s Brightest Teenagers Wins Maths Competition

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One of Wolverhampton’s brightest teenagers has won a maths competition set by one of the UK’s leading Mathematicians for the International Gateway for Gifted Youth.

October 15, 2008

Expert comment – Inpatient psychiatric care

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Warwick Medical School Professor of Psychiatry Scott Weich argues that inpatient NHS psychiatric care is expensive, unpopular and often unsatisfactory.

In an editorial for the British Medical Journal this month, Professor Weich said a recent national review of inpatient services by the Healthcare Commission rated 59% of trusts as fair or weak.

He said: “Where things are bad, they are very bad, and these are the places where the needs of the most excluded, vulnerable and disaffected (including those from black and minority communities) are least adequately met.”

Professor Weich stated that the number of psychiatric beds had fallen by 31% between 1996 and 2006.

He added: “That service users welcome further reductions in bed numbers speaks volumes, not only for the reprehensible state of many inpatient units, but also for users’ confidence in community services.”

To contact Professor Weich, call Kelly Parkes-Harrison, Communications Officer, 02476 150483, 07824 540863

May 12, 2008

Boston University and University of Warwick Launch Partnership

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Boston University and the University of Warwick, one of Britain’s leading research universities, have announced a partnership to leverage the strengths of each institution through research collaboration in new and emerging disciplines.

The announcement coincided with a BU visit and speech by Rt. Hon. John Denham MP, the British Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills, who echoed the recent statements by British Prime Minister Gordon Brown for more inter-university collaboration between the U.S. and the United Kingdom.

April 22, 2008

Warwick launches international Summer University for brightest young people a year early

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In August the University of Warwick announced that it was to launch a new international organisation for gifted young people in Spring 2008 with its first “Summer University” to be held in 2009. That announcement has generated such a high level of interest that the University has now decided to accelerate its plans and mount the first International Gateway for Gifted Youth Summer University (“IGGY Summer U”) this Summer in July and August 2008.

June 20, 2007

Gifted Kids Say No Place For British Values in the National Curriculum

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A survey of some England’s gifted children in The National Academy for Gifted and Talented Youth, based at the University of Warwick, has found that those pupils see no place for the teaching of “British Values” in the National Curriculum.

June 23, 2006

WBS Research Asks – Can The Public Sector Become Lean?

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Research by Dr Zoe Radnor and Mr Paul Walley of Warwick Business School at the University of Warwick has found that the methods employed by Toyota, to make their production system "Lean", can be applied to public sector services. This could have a positive impact on employee morale, customer satisfaction and process efficiency.

November 22, 2005

Indian Political Leader Becomes Warwick Professor

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Warwick Manufacturing Group at the University of Warwick is delighted to welcome Jaswant Singh one of India's most respected public figures as its latest Professor.

Report Declares Birmingham Leads on Innovation in Ethnic Minority Youth Crime

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With the recent ethnic riots in Birmingham it is no surprise that a new report by researchers at the University of Warwick declares Birmingham to be a leading city on ethnic minority youth crime – the surprise is that they mean Birmingham is leading the way in innovation in its design of programmes to prevent ethnic minority youth crime. However the report notes that the schemes only touch the lives of a few hundred such young people and calls for this work to be extended to serve thousands rather than just hundreds. The report also calls for more co-ordination of effort and for real consultation with young people.

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