Dunoon pupils enjoy 31st German exchange

Pupils at Dunoon Grammar recently took part in the school’s 31st German exchange visit.

Thirty-five pupils returned to Dunoon Grammar School from a 10-day trip to Germany, laden with not only gifts and dirty washing for parents - but with many magical memories that will last a lifetime.

The pupils, accompanied by six staff, visited Hardenberg Gymnasium in Furth, Bavaria.

This was the 31st year of the Dunoon-Hardenberg exchange and marked the final German exchange for three staff from Dunoon Grammar - Mrs Clark, Miss McKillop and Mr Campbell.

Mrs Clark and Miss McKillop founded the exchange and have worked tirelessly to enhance the experience over the last three decades. Both teachers have now retired from Dunoon Grammar School and, along with Mr Campbell who has been involved in the exchange for 19 years, have packed their exchange travel bags for the final time.

During the trip, the Dunoon pupils were fully immersed in Bavarian life and culture, taking part in a diverse mix of rich learning experiences, including an outdoor education high ropes course; a visit to the largest museum of cultural history in Germany; a walking tour of the UNESCO World Heritage Site on the banks of the Danube river; and arts and craft workshops.

The pupils also got to visit the BMW Group Plant in Regensburg where they were given a tour of the factory.

Argyll and Bute Council’s Policy Lead for Education, Councillor Yvonne McNeilly said: “I would firstly like to thank Mrs Clark, Miss McKillop and Mr Campbell for their dedication and commitment to the exchange visit over the years.

“It’s clear that the German partnership is a success. These trips are a wonderful opportunity for our young people to experience different cultures and help to enhance interest in global issues, as well as a broader general knowledge.

“For many pupils this is their first time going somewhere without their parents, and really helps to boost their confidence and self-esteem.”

Head Teacher David Mitchell added: “The 31st exchange between Dunoon Grammar and Hardenberg Gymnasium has been a great success. The warmth and respect displayed between the pupils and staff involved was evident.

“The range and quality of learning experiences provided for the pupils was first class and I am confident that many lasting friendships have been initiated during the exchange. I would again like to thank all staff and pupils involved. I would like to extend my thanks to the parents of our pupils. Without their support and commitment, this fantastic exchange would not be possible.

"I would of course like to thank Mrs Clark, Miss McKillop and Mr Campbell for forging and nurturing these fruitful links with our friends at Hardenberg Gymnasium. They have created something really special and I am sure their legacy will live on for many years to come.”

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