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Global School Partnerships Starter Grants

By: Kevin Watson MSc - Updated: 12 Feb 2018 | comments*Discuss
Global School Partnerships Teachers

The UK Department for International Development (DFID) runs a scheme called Global School Partnerships.

The Global School Partnerships programme introduces worldwide issues to children, families, teachers and communities. The aim of the programme is to encourage children to make a commitment to a world that is fairer and more sustainable.

The partnerships are between schools in the UK and elsewhere. There are now 2,000 such partnerships that link the UK to 56 countries. The overseas schools are in Asia, Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America.


UKaid funds the programme through DFID. The managers are a group of four organisations: the British Council, VSO, the UK One World Linking Association and the Cambridge Education Foundation.

The types of grant available are a starter grant; a reciprocal visit grant; a global curriculum project grant; and a local authority grant.

Teacher Taster Sessions

Anyone interested in the Global School Partnerships programme should apply for the starter grant. But first, teachers may wish to find out more about the programme and what’s involved.

DFID therefore runs Teacher Taster Sessions. These present a summary of the programme. They also show how it can benefit a school.

Among the issues the sessions cover are professional development opportunities, and help with meeting the criteria of the curricula. Teachers also receive advice about finding a partner school, and the grant sources that are available.

The sessions last about an hour and a half and take place across the country. For more details, contact VSO on 020 8780 7396.

Next Step

The next step is for teachers to discuss with their colleagues the possibility of an overseas school partnership.

Teachers may want to think about the motivation for such a partnership, and what they hope to achieve. Other common issues include how a partnership can improve the goals of a school, and how the learning experience for children can benefit.

Applying For the Starter Grant

To apply for the starter grant, teachers need to visit the Cambridge Education Foundation’s website. It’s possible to complete the form online. Alternatively, teachers can download the form and send it by email or post.

There are 1,000 starter grants of £250 available. Teachers can use them to look further into the option of a global school partnership.

Eligible Activities

Teachers can use the grant for eligible activities. These include supplying cover and travel so they can go to one of the Introduction to Global School Partnerships workshops. The workshop itself is free. DFID maintains a list of the latest set of workshops on its website.

Teachers can also use the starter grant to cover the cost of in-school training. This can come from a local Development Education Centre (DEC). See the website of the DEA charity for contact details of the nearest DEC.

Further Grants

After receiving the starter grant, and making a decision to progress, teachers can apply for further funds.

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