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School of Sanctuary Trip to Otley All Saints

We were very lucky to welcome some young people from your school today, and wanted to thank you for allowing them to spend time with us. 

Mrs Mason brought Abdelaziz, Lana (and Mum, Nabila), Esmail and Meron along to spend time with our Year 6 pupils. 

We have been doing some work in class - trying to understand what is happening in different areas of the world to cause such unrest and, more specifically, what it means to be a refugee. We contacted Mrs Mason a while ago to ask if she would be willing to bring some of her students in who could share their stories and help to deepen our understanding.

Your young people spent the whole morning with us, sharing their very personal, and often painful, stories; teaching us how to count and write our names in Arabic and Tigrigna; encouraging us to try some Arabic dancing; helping us learn about how to prepare and enjoy fatayers; teaching us about the nature of their faith and how deeply proud they are of it; and taking time to answer our questions carefully and thoughtfully.

Our children and staff were wowed by the strength, resilience and gentleness shown by your pupils in the face of such unimaginable challenges. Having them with us was an invaluable experience and, most importantly, allowed us time to help our children challenge the, often negative, portrayal of young people who are refugees in the media and beyond. They were all incredibly articulate, patient and knowledgeable - an absolute credit to your school and to their families.

Thank you once again for allowing this visit to take place.    

Sincerely,

Phil Robertson

Deputy Headteacher

Otley All Saints CE Primary School

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Lawnswood School, Ring Road, West Park, Leeds LS16 5AG

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