City life | By Gemma Bradshaw

A real sense of community and connection

Islington primary schools supported by City are named World Class Schools.


Earlier this year, Hugh Myddelton Primary School in Clerkenwell and Winton Primary School in King’s Cross were both awarded the World Class Schools Quality Mark (WCSQM). The rating given to the two schools, which have long been supported by City, recognises schools that are performing beyond the level of an ‘Outstanding’ Ofsted rating.


City has been working with Hugh Myddelton Primary since 2013 and with Winton Primary since 2018, fostering a strong partnership with both schools. Pupils at the schools take part in many activities at City, including tutoring, Visit Days, Spotlight Days and a Summer School, facilitated through City’s Widening Participation team.

Year Five pupils work together during City’s Summer School Programme.

Ben Copsey, Project Officer in City’s Widening Participation team comments:


“City has fostered a real sense of community and connection with the schools. To the students that attend our Visit Days, City is not just any university, it becomes their university. One that cares about their learning, supports their schools and, most importantly, welcomes them onto campus as valued and equal members of the City community.”


Around 100 City students currently work as tutors, supporting small groups of pupils with English and Maths, while developing important transferrable skills at the same time. Over 250 tutoring hours were delivered between Hugh Myddelton and Winton Primary Schools throughout 2019.


Spotlight Days involve small groups of pupils visiting City for an in-depth exploration of the campus and a closer look at a particular subject. Academic experts from across City’s Schools have taken part in these days.

City’s Widening Participation Student Ambassadors help out during the activities with the primary school children.

City’s flagship offering for the students is the Summer School, a week-long programme of coding and video game design for Year Five pupils. The programme is co-designed with students from Hugh Myddelton Primary and is attended by students from both schools, as well as their parents and carers. During the course of last year’s programme, students were also invited to explore the use of IT in health care, focusing on the EVA Park project within City’s Division of Language and Communication Science, a virtual world that gives people with aphasia unique opportunities to practise their speech and establish social connections.

Tony McMahon, Assistant Head Teacher at Winton Primary says:


“I can honestly say that [the Summer School] has been one of the most inspiring and exciting initiatives that I have seen in my ten years as a teacher. It was great to see [the students] interact positively and integrate with children across the schools taking part. Seeing a room of strangers transform into a cohesive class was just so impressive.”