A SCHOOL with students of more than 50 nationalities on its roll recently celebrated its cultural diversity.

Earlier this month, following a suggestion from students, Mary Immaculate High School, in Wenvoe, celebrated this diversity by holding its first ever Culture Week.

During the event, students were encouraged to express their cultural and ethnic backgrounds and talk about their traditions and what makes them who they are.

The event was organised by Ore Egbetola, Mary Immaculate’s Wellbeing and Spiritual Officer.

She said: “Pupils have been keen to celebrate their cultures for some time, and it was even a big part of the speeches given by our new head boy and girl.

“The headteacher thought it was a good idea, so I had to figure out how to turn that into an activity.

“I thought it was bigger than just one day, so we decided to spread the celebration over a week, which included St David’s Day, so we could learn about Welsh culture as well.”

Students made a list of foods they would like to try, and on each day the canteen staff prepared various international dishes, including Italian, Spanish, Welsh and American foods.

Teachers were also encouraged to explore culture through their lessons, so in maths students created pie charts about the demographics in their forms, and in history they explored how different cultures have influenced the culture of the UK.

The event culminated in a culture fair in the school’s sports hall, where students and their parents set up stalls to share their culture.

There were stalls representing students from countries as diverse as China, Congo, Nigeria, Portugal, Romania and Somaliland, and many students dressed up in their national dress.

Barry And District News:

The school put on a cultural diversity festival

Barry And District News:

There were some fantastic clothes on show!

Year 10 student Wei Ni said: “I really loved it because of the new opportunity to socialise and learn about the different cultures within our school community.

“It gave us pupils and teachers something exciting to look forward to. I feel it brought everyone closer. The mood and energy in the school was surreal!”

Year 7 student Seren said: “I think we should do it every year, as it was an easier way to experience other people’s cultures and learn about our differences.”

Miss Egbetola now wants to make Culture Week an annual event at Mary Immaculate.

“We have so much to learn about the world and about each other,” she said. “The more we do that the more we learn about ourselves and the closer we become as a community.”

Mary Immaculate headteacher Huw Powell said it was a fantastic and moving experience.

“The pupils threw themselves into everything on offer. I am so proud of them and of our local community for helping us with this hugely worthwhile activity – well done to all!”