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Erasmus UK Visit

The dust (and paint!) is finally settling at Fulston Manor School following the excitement of a week-long Erasmus residential visit from 9 different European nations.  Culminating in large-scale open-air artworks and television appearances, the week has once more highlighted Fulston’s commitment to providing unique learning opportunities for all.

The dust (and paint!) is finally settling at Fulston Manor School following the excitement of a week-long Erasmus residential visit from 9 different European nations.  Culminating in large-scale open-air artworks and television appearances, the week has once more highlighted Fulston’s commitment to providing unique learning opportunities for all.    

Arriving at various points during the last weekend of September, our guests were welcomed into the homes of host families and offered the finest in Kent hospitality and leisure activities; from perfectly crafted Yorkshire puddings to frenetic Krav Maga sessions, all our visitors left with memorable impressions of life in the South-East, testament to the kindness and generosity found here in our community.          

With an ambitious agenda of visits and workshops, it was a challenge for all involved to keep pace with the week’s programme.  Punctuated with musical performances from Kent folk acts and Fulston Manor’s own celebrated jazz and samba bands, our visitors were provided with insightful sessions exploring national identity and migration, poetry and infographics.  Soaking up the historic sights of Rochester town centre and Canterbury Cathedral, Leeds Castle and Spitalfields Market, 40 adventurous young souls were offered a whistle-stop tour of the region and invited to learn about the heritage and cultural diversity apparent in the UK. 

However, these experiences were not simply passive excursions.  Each had a purpose and sought to engage participating students with the core aims of the 3-year European Union-funded Project, a Project reflecting upon a changing continent and engaging young people with the reality behind the headlines.  Focussing on artistic representations of migration and the UK as a ‘melting pot’, students took to the streets of Brick Lane and its environs to chance their arm at photographic collages using the school’s computer technology.   Powerful, heartfelt messages advocating solidarity, understanding and tolerance were exhibited during the closing ceremony and of course, the group had to prepare themselves for one final artistic endeavour…       

On a forgivingly warm Friday morning every nation worked side-by-side to create an impressive mural of 10 interconnecting flags outside the Millennium Hall using nothing but spray cans and cardboard.  Covering a space of more than 60m₂ and securing Meridian News coverage, the finished piece now serves as a compelling reminder of what can be accomplished by young people eager to succeed through collaboration and co-operation.  Bringing the Erasmus week to a fitting close and embodying Fulston Manor’s original motto ‘may they learn the art of friendship’ the young people who recently visited these shores have left us with a powerful, visual demonstration of how this can be achieved.