Newsletter November 2016

The Conlan School Course Guide

The Conlan School Course Guide demonstrates the broad range of study programmes we can offer you and your students. Through our ever growing network of contacts in the business and educational community, our aim is to provide experiences that will expand knowledge and increase confidence within the culture of Wales and the UK. We hope that during your time with us you and your students can progress personally and positively in every aspect of life!

Please, click here to download "The Conlan School Course Guide"!

Chester Rally Week
Rally GB returns to the city for the first time in 20 years!
See the stars of the World Rally Championship up close in the city centre.
The culmination of Chester Rally week sees the UK round of the World Rally Championship on the streets of Chester
The Official Wales Rally GB podium will be situated near the clock on Eastgate, it will be flanked by a big screen TV and accompanied by a live commentary team.
From around 2pm there will be various activities through Upper Bridge Street and along Eastgate to get everyone geared up for the arrival of the National Rally crews.
The main event reaches our streets when the top stars of World rallying will arrive back from a day’s action in Mid Wales. There will be opportunities for autographs and special selfie stations to capture the moment.
This really will be an event not to be missed; the sounds echoing through the streets will be a real treat.

Group from Guadaloupe
For one mild week in October Abergele hosted a group of 30 senior high school students from Guadaloupe, a French speaking island in the West Indies in the Caribbean. I spoke to one of their Group Leaders, Elisabeth Gustav, to find out more about them, why they chose to come to North Wales and what they thought of the experience.
The students are in their last year and preparing to take their Baccalaureate. They are a ‘special European class’ who have been studying more English than other students and will be examined to C1 level of the CEFR. Traditionally the school sends their groups to an English speaking country during their 3 years. They could have gone to the US but chose Conlan school in Abergele. They wanted somewhere with a unique environment away from big cities with a way of life that they had not experienced before. ‘They [the students] really enjoyed and valued the immersion of staying with host families’ Mrs Gustav said, adding that they were apprehensive before coming. That feeling dissipated when they were warmly welcomed after a long inward journey which had 2 delays! They enjoyed the classes and appreciated the attention given to grammar, something they ‘don’t have as much time to do’ back home. The visits and excursions were ‘fun’ and the ‘landscape is beautiful’ however she added that ‘the only problem was the weather’. Quite a few students came down with colds, including Elisabeth herself who was the first. Despite this setback, she added that ‘there was never a day when we thought ‘boring’..because teenagers can be pretty difficult....It’s a success because we are thinking of coming back...we’re very was good value for money [and] worth our time because we flew over 12 hours to get here’.
We are proud that this group has had a good time and found it worthwhile. We’ve certainly enjoyed having them, and the families have enjoyed the opportunity to engage with another culture.

Group Leaders left to right: Betty Belrain, Elisabeth Gustav, Catherine Nasso.

TESOL to Host Summit in 2017 on the Future of the ELT Profession
Alexandria, VA (17 October 2016) – As the demand for English language teaching and learning continues to grow globally, many questions must be answered: What are the qualities of a competent English language teacher? What role should English play in a multilingual global society? What policies should be in place to prepare the future generation of second language speakers? What are the myths currently driving those policies? What role should research play in this new environment? These are some of the key questions that will be addressed at the Summit on the Future of the TESOL Profession.
Hosted by TESOL International Association, this ground-breaking event will take place on 9–10 February 2017 in Athens, Greece. The Summit will showcase 12 respected and innovative thought leaders from six continents, whose ideas will challenge common misconceptions and will help re-envision a future grounded in equity, inquiry, and professionalism. The Summit is intended to generate a strategic conversation around four major themes: Futurology, English in Multilingualism, Reimagining English Competence, and The Profession as Change Agent.
The Chair of the TESOL Summit is Professor Emeritus Denise Murray of Macquarie University. "The use of English around the world has increased dramatically, bringing both opportunities and challenges for individuals, governments, and English language educators,” said Professor Murray “To meet the challenges and broaden opportunities, the TESOL profession needs to examine its knowledge base, values, and the diverse contexts of English language teaching. Through this examination the profession can ensure a more inclusive, collaborative approach for English language education in the 21st century."

The Summit will feature an invited in-person audience of 200 industry leaders from around the world who influence English language education policy and practice. These Summit Delegates will hold high-level strategic discussions, facilitated by the speakers, about what it means to be an English language professional. They will also help create a roadmap for countries and institutions seeking to upgrade or reform their language education policies.
In an effort to make this landmark event truly global, TESOL professionals and stakeholders from around the world will be able to participate online and live-stream the Summit. Online discussions will open prior to the event on 1 December 2016 and will continue through May 2017.

To sit on the fence
When you sit on the fence, you don’t want to choose a side or make a decision.
For example, “When we discussed the recent news story, Nathalie thought the man was guilty of murder, Tom thought he might be innocent but James wasn’t sure and sat on the fence.” James didn’t want to show his opinion.
The phrase implies that the one who sits on the fence is doing so for a reason. Perhaps James is ambivalent or wants to remain popular with both his friends. Politicians often remain “on the fence” in order to keep their options open in the future – you don’t want to choose the wrong side of course!
In fact, it was a politician, Carl Schurz, who used the phrase back in 1828 when he explained his political independence. He described his position “as that of a man sitting on a fence, with clean boots, watching carefully which way he may leap to keep out of the mud.” This was one of the first recorded usages of the phrase.
Are you one who doesn’t mind sharing your opinion or do you often “sit on the fence”?