Pupils embark on trip of a lifetime to Vietnam

Students Jody Humpries, Rachel Simmons, Vas Druzhinin and Teri Guest

Students Jody Humpries, Rachel Simmons, Vas Druzhinin and Teri Guest Pic: Emmet Simpson

A group of students from a Croydon secondary school are today embarking on the trip of a lifetime to Vietnam after spending almost two years raising funds for the adventure.

The 14 students from Addington High School will fly out today to spend three weeks in Vietnam, traveling to many different parts of the country. They will partake in voluntary work such as teaching younger children English.

The trip has been paid for entirely by the students, aged 15 and 16, through extensive fundraising and with help from their parents. One of the students, Rachel Simmons, said: “The trip has been planned for over two years, so we’ve had plenty of time to fundraise.”

The money raised by the students was made through selling food and drink on lunch breaks and at school open evenings.

The students accept they will face many new experiences in Vietnam, but are enthusiastic about encountering a different culture. Jody Humphries, 15, said: “I’m excited about the food in particular. It’s going to be very different, very fresh.”

For the group of students, this trip marks the furthest they have ever been from home, especially for such a long period of time. While many students said their parents’ had been understandably concerned, others were much less so. Teri Guest, 15, said: “My dad has actually been pretty excited! He has been looking up Vietnamese words to teach me.”

The teenagers will keep their families and friends back home updated on their adventures with a group blog. Eastlondonlines also hopes to report on the trip.

Addington High School has been under scrutiny in recent months following a critical Ofsted report in October last year which resulted in the school being put on ‘special measures’ status. The head teacher for the past 12 years resigned last month. While the students are away, Addington will convert to academy status under the wing of Ravens Wood School, in Bromley.

The trip to Vietnam is not directly related to the curriculum, but is instead intended to give the students a chance to experience a different type of culture in a very different part for the world

Ian White, the RE teacher who will be accompanying the students, explained why he believes the trip to be important: “This trip is all about the experience for these students. It’s a chance for them to see more of the world, to get out of Addington for a while.”

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