Forty staff and students from the Anglo European School recently returned from a week of intensive study at the United Nations in Geneva. The Anglo is the only state school known to offer such a programme. As well as receiving briefings from departments within the Palais des Nations such as peacekeeping, disarmament, the work of interpreters and the work of the Human Rights Council, the group also spent time at a number of specialised agencies that form part of the UN system. The World Health Organisation, the World Meteorological; Office the World Intellectual Property Organisation, the International Labour Organisation and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees all formed part of the programme. The International Telecommunication Union provided an insight into the development of telecommunication. According to party leader, Headteacher, David Barrs, “the students discovered how central Ingatestone was to the story of telecommunications!. Situated between Chelmsford where Marconi pioneered radio broadcasting and Brentwood where Alan Sugar’s Amstrad popularised domestic computer use, Ingatestone is very well placed to make this claim!
In the post-referendum world the group also visited the World Trade Organisation.
David added “Once the students understood that the UN is not a World Government and that it cannot force countries to act in certain ways, they came to see it as a force for good. If they want to make their mark on the world using their education and ideas, they need to understand how the world works. The UN touches every part of their lives one way or another, be it through their studies, their careers or their daily lives”.
The school will visit again in 2018.
The photograph was taken in the main conference room of the Palais des Nations in Geneva. Mr. Barrs (front left), Mrs Kowalski –teacher (right) Mr Newton – Director of Sixth Form (seated- right).