On Sunday 23rd February four Year 9 students embarked on the first leg of their Australian exchange with students from Carey Grammar School, Melbourne.

The first leg was to be a six week stay with their exchange partners (Benjamin, Lucy, Mia and Lucy) and host families out in Australia; they departed with much excitement and little knowledge of the global drama about to unfold.

Whilst in Melbourne Charlie, Morgan, Rosie and Scarlett attended classes and were treated to a programme of activities in the locality and further afield. Some highlights from the students were:

“I loved the Australian lifestyle; we spent lots of time outside socialising with our new friends at the parks and meeting at each other’s houses to swim in their pools. School days were a lot shorter. Even though our exchange was unexpectedly cut short I made great friendships and was looking forward to them all being at Taunton School for the Summer term. My exchange Mia had asked lots of questions about boarding and was very excited to be spending time in Weirfield.” (Rosie Imm)

“My highlight was when we went to the twelve apostles, I am looking forward to spending more time with Lucy and showing her how different England is to Australia.” (Morgan Gunter)

“The highlight of my trip was the activities we did every week. I also enjoyed just how nice and welcoming everyone was in Australia. If my exchange Lucy was able to come I would have wanted to take her to London.” (Scarlett King)

Though the exchange has now been interrupted due to COVID-19 (and Charlie, Morgan, Rosie and Scarlett had to arrive home two weeks early) both schools hope that the second leg can happen at some point in the next academic year though in the meantime our students will cherish the memories and friendships they have made and the spirit of independence they have gained.

Adrian Roberts, Head of Geography and IB Coordinator