HPU education students visit London schools

BROWNWOOD – June 25, 2012 – Nine Howard Payne University education students recently returned from a trip to London where they visited schools to compare the Texas and London education systems.

education_students_at_kensington_palace_for_webThe group visited Knollmead Primary School and Chessington Community College, a college prep school, both in the Royal Borough of Kingston.

“Our trip provided education students the opportunity to experience another educational system and discover common techniques and strategies as well as appreciate distinct differences,” said Lauren Kirk, instructor of education.

At the schools, HPU students met and observed British students of all ages. Older students from Chessington answered questions posed by the HPU group, resulting in lively discussions.

“While at Chessington we were also able to visit with a student teacher and compare her university experience as a prospective teacher to what our students do at Howard Payne,” Kirk said.

According to Dr. Mitzi Lehrer, assistant professor of education at HPU, the group noticed many differences in education in America and England.

“At Knollmead, several observations were made by our students,” Lehrer said. “The students all wear uniforms, there is much activity in the classrooms and not many textbooks in sight and, even in the very cool spring, the students have 10 weeks of swimming in an outside heated pool.”

The HPU group also had the opportunity to see the sites in and around London.

“London is a logical choice of traveling abroad because of the common language,” Lehrer said. “Another attraction of London is the wonderful historic sites we visited: Westminster Abbey, Greenwich, Hampton Court Palace, Imperial War Museum, Cabinet War Rooms and Churchill Museum, Kensington Palace and the London Eye. We also traveled to Bath and toured the Roman Baths which are more than 2,000 years old.”

HPU students on the trip included Tonie Contreras, a May graduate from Early; Maddie Daugherty, a senior from Temple; Aimee Gow, a senior from Iowa Park; Kyle Heidelberg, a senior from Rowlett; Lori Horn, a senior from Granbury; Alisha Locklear, a May graduate from Bertram; Tiffany Minshew, a May graduate from Brownwood; Bianca Monge, a senior from Fort Worth; and Steffanie Sharp, a senior from Early. Trip sponsors included Kirk; Lehrer; and Brenda McLendon Alexander, senior vice president for finance and administration, and husband, Eddie Alexander.

“Professors Lehrer and Kirk did an outstanding job leading this international study abroad opportunity,” said Dr. Michael Rosato, dean of the School of Education. “Our students experienced first-hand the similarities and differences between the two educational systems. This is yet another tangible example of the high-quality instructional opportunities Howard Payne University students can experience.”

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Photo cutline: HPU students visited Kensington Palace while in London. Pictured are, from left, Alisha Locklear, Lauren Kirk, Tiffany Minshew, Tonie Contreras, Steffanie Sharp, Bianca Monge, Lori Horn, Maddi Daugherty, Aimee Gow, Kyle Heidelberg and Dr. Mitzi Lehrer.