Earlier this afternoon, the Lord Mayor of Leeds, Councillor Graham Latty, has welcomed a group of students from the Chinese Xuejun High School at the Civic Hall. This visit is part of the fourteenth two-way exchange between Prince Henry’s Grammar School in Otley and Xuejun High School in Hangzhou, Leeds’ Chinese partner city.
In 2000, Prince Henry’s first hosted a Xuejun group as part of the Breeze International Youth Festival and the year after this initial visit the first school partnership between Leeds and Hangzhou was agreed. Since then, over 160 Prince Henry’s students and 25 teachers have visited Xuejun and more than 180 Xuejun students and 35 teachers have been to Prince Henry’s as part of the school’s homestay exchange programme.
Alongside this exchange programme, Prince Henry’s is one of the first schools in the UK to teach Mandarin Chinese to all students. Since 2000, Year 8 students take a Mandarin Chinese “taster” course and students in Years 9 and 10 have the opportunity to study an accredited course after school.
Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China