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Press release from the British High Commission Nairobi

14 July 2020, Nairobi:

The historic Durham brand will come to Kenya in January 2021, with the opening of the Durham International Nursery & Pre-Prep School in Nairobi – the first time a British school has opened a branch in East Africa.

With a 600-year legacy of outstanding education in the UK, Durham International will open at first for 2-6-year-olds, with the aim to open a full Primary and Secondary School in future years. The spacious site will be in the leafy suburb of Thigiri, with facilities of the highest standard – including large classrooms, a fully-equipped IT suite, a heated swimming pool, a dedicated art room, a dance studio, and a music room.

With the uncertainty and challenges caused by Covid-19 in all schools in Kenya, Durham International took the decision to delay its opening from September 2020 to January 2021. But they will host open days for prospective pupils early September 2020.

The decision is in line with the recent announcement by the Ministry of Education to delay the opening of all schools in Kenya until the new year. Whilst Durham International Nursery & Pre-Prep School is a new school in Nairobi, it is operated in partnership with the 600-year-old traditions and heritage of Durham School UK. It comes after the successful opening of Durham School for Girls Doha, Qatar.

Sue Small, Headteacher-elect of Durham International Nursery & Pre-Prep School said:

“We look forward to welcoming a diverse community of children with a range of cultural, and educational backgrounds, languages, talents and abilities to our brand new school in January 2021. We know many parents are excited to join us as our Founding Families and become part of the international Durham community.

We are committed to ensuring that every child will get the best possible start to their educational journey at Durham, one filled with happiness and where they develop a ‘Confidence for Life’.”

The British High Commissioner, Jane Marriott, attended Durham University, which shares a close relationship with Durham School.

She said: “As a former student of History at Durham University, I am delighted Durham will be opening a school in Nairobi in January 2021. Education links are a key part of the UK and Kenya’s relationship, and it’s fantastic to see Durham School being the first British school to open a branch in East Africa.

“I met the Durham team at the Africa Investment Summit which the UK hosted in London this January, and their commitment to provide high quality education for families in Kenya was crystal clear.”

Kieran McLaughlin, Headmaster of Durham School said:

“We are wholly committed to supporting Durham International Nursery & Pre-Prep School in Nairobi and as Headmaster here in Durham I look forward to our sister school establishing its reputation as the best possible place for children to begin their educational journey in Nairobi.”

Ann Champion, Early Years Foundation Stage Director for Kenya (and previously Head of Early Years at Durham School UK for 26 years) said:

“The School’s wonderful surroundings provide a safe and nurturing environment for our pupils as well as providing endless opportunities for outdoor play and learning. Our bespoke curriculum develops the ‘whole child’, with a focus on mindfulness and the teaching of our core values – Moral Integrity, Ambition, Respect and Kindness. This is the MARK of a Durham School education.”

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