D Tech Designs

Repton School Pairs Classic Latin with Modern Learning Platforms for Students

Repton School was just one of countless academic settings forced to pivot to distance learning in the wake of the pandemic. Rather than hampering access to resources and hindering student opportunities, School staff mobilised to keep the transition as seamless as possible for every pupil. This included creating remote learning provisions while continuing to look ahead at future academic programming.

In the process, Repton School was able to alleviate school attendance and access as a source of stress and anxiety for 96% of students during the pandemic. This was a remarkable feat considering that, when the crisis first struck, the School had no prior infrastructure to support digitised lessons or decentralised teaching. What’s more, Repton School has continued to add to its roster of offerings as a result of consistent planning and analysis of educational benefits. Most recently, this was showcased by the launch of a Latin Online programme.

Benefits of Learning Latin in a Modern World

Latin is often perceived as an irrelevant or dead language in contemporary society. However, English speakers use Latin naturally in their daily lives. The words bonus, ego, multi, and verbatim are just a few examples of English words directly derived from Latin. Depending on the study and sampling used, researchers have placed anywhere from 30-60% of English words as having been derived from Latin. Wherever the final numbers fall, it’s clear that Latin had a major influence.

Language learning as a whole also has a long list of lauded benefits. According to the World Economic Forum (WEF), adding a second language can help improve overall cognitive function or improve your ability to multitask. Notably, the WEF also reported that the number of UK students learning a second language at GCSE level was only 30-50%.

Repton School has long worked to counter those lagging language learning statistics. Students are offered access to French, German, Spanish, Mandarin, Japanese, and Latin language courses. Content blends textbook and classroom learning with real-world exposure to native speakers and contextual use. With an entire department dedicated to Modern Foreign Languages, the School strives to provide pupils with opportunities for career and cultural impact.

Specific to Latin, Repton School Headmaster Mark Semmence shared, “Highly organised and logical, it sharpens the mind and improves critical thinking, attention to detail, and problem-solving skills…In our modern world being able to think precisely and communicate clearly are qualities that are in high demand.”

Repton School Goes Global with Latin Online Programme

In particular, Latin holds a special place at Repton School. Acknowledging it as a foundational component of the English language, the School offers studies in Latin and the Classics starting in B Block (Year 9). While students at the Derbyshire campus have had access to courses and faculty for Latin learning, other locations had expressed interest in the value of adding Latin to their curricula.

Repton School found the solution in the remote learning network it had established for main campus students during the pandemic. The result was the launch of Latin Online, an EdTech programme designed to deliver Latin instruction of the highest quality to students at Repton Dubai and Repton Abu Dhabi locations. Just as in Repton UK, the Latin Online programme includes studies of language, linguistics, and literature.

The new programme found an eager and welcoming audience with students abroad. It will also offer the added benefit of broader access to virtual visiting speakers for students throughout the Repton family of schools. With a number of recent Repton School graduates moving on to top universities for study after focusing on classical subjects and languages, the future continues to look bright for Latin education.

Remote Learning Success at Repton School

It’s no surprise that Latin Online is receiving accolades and excitement with students, faculty, and industry leaders. It stands as the latest addition to an already strong repertoire of online programming recognised across the UK for its design.

Repton School won the 2021 Education Business Award for Remote Learning, valuing the School’s swift move to distance learning with robust IT solutions while also prioritising student wellness. Despite the potential for upheaval in routines and access, Repton School students did not miss one day of lessons due to the efforts put forth by the entire staff. From creating digitised curricula to finding a means to encourage physical activity with virtual coaching, the School mobilised to maintain the quality of education and life for every student.

The award also reflected the need for community and teamwork across the Repton family. Semmance explained, “Communication with parents, pupils, and staff was at the heart of keeping our School spirit strong and pupils’ learning on track.” Arguably, the School’s ability to quickly adapt in the face of adversity also played a critical role in student success.

As EdTech continues to evolve, Repton School continues to embrace technologies that further the quality and access of education for its students. The systems put in place by necessity for the pandemic will continue to find use through programmes like Latin Online, bringing even greater educational access to students no matter where they are in the world. It is also through unique programmes like Latin Online that Repton School continues to preserve classic subjects in the face of contemporary change.

About Repton School

Repton School is a co-educational independent school for boarding and day pupils aged between 13-18. Foreign and classic languages are just part of the mainstays that inspire development and discovery for students. By studying languages, students are also able to experience new cultures, arts, perspectives, and opportunities for personal and professional growth. Learn more about Repton School’s language programmes: https://www.repton.org.uk/school-life/academic-excellence/languages

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