JCB Academy UK exchange 2014

JCBBanner (Demo)

Later this year, St Patrick’s Technical College will introduce an exciting initiative for students to introduce them to the global opportunities they have in studying for a trades and technical career. Our inaugural exchange to The JCB Academy in Staffordshire, will see four students and two staff spend two weeks attending classes at one of the UK’s newest University Technical Colleges.

The JCB Academy is a school similar to St Patrick’s in many ways with the curriculum and learning techniques allowing students to combine theory and practical activities with a strong focus on Engineering.

Like St Patrick’s, The JCB Academy has strong links with local industry.  JCB, the world’s third-largest construction equipment manufacturer, is the College’s major backer. Lead by JCB Group Chairman, Sir Anthony Bamford, local business leaders have shown significant support for this educational venture by providing equipment, expertise and engineering staff to assist College staff in the delivery of pre-apprenticeship and pre-tertiary Engineering courses.

In 2012, staff from St Patrick’s Technical College visited The JCB Academy and discovered that there was much our schools could learn from each other. Many of the learnings from that experience have since been implemented here at Edinburgh North, while in Staffordshire our flexible approach to pre-apprenticeship programs has been adopted.

During October last year, St Patrick’s hosted two staff members from The JCB Academy to investigate further aspects of our school to be adopted in the UK and to formulate the concept of an annual staff / student exchange program between our schools.

We are delighted to offer students the opportunity to be part of this in 2014.

INFORMATION EVENING – Tuesday 18 February

An Information Evening for students and their families wishing to learn more about this opportunity will be held at St Patrick’s Technical College on Tuesday 18 February, 6.30 – 8pm.

If you wish to attend, please register your interest with Mrs Vanessa Morley at the College Administration on 8209 3700 during school hours, or email


Where exactly is The JCB Academy?

The JCB Academy (JCBA) is located in the village of Rocester, Staffordshire.  It is approximately 30km west of the city of Derby and 30km to the east of Stoke-on-Trent.  We are likely to have the exchange fly into Manchester (approximately 100km north) as the nearest major airport.

When will the exchange take place?

We plan to leave on Saturday 27 September and return to Adelaide on Monday 13 October.  This is the two week break between terms 3 and 4.

How many students / staff will be going?

We would like to send four students.  They will be accompanied by two staff members.

Where will students stay while on the exchange?

Students will be hosted by families with students attending JCBA.  These families will be interviewed, in person, by a member of the St Patrick’s Technical College staff in April this year.

How much will the exchange cost?

Full cost details are currently being calculated, however with accommodation provided by host families, the majority of the cost will be in the return airfare between Adelaide and the United Kingdom.  Some costs, such as travel insurance, are requirements of Catholic Education SA and will need to be included in the overall package cost.

What sort of activities will students be involved in while on the exchange?

Students will join in many regular JCBA classes throughout the two weeks as well as work on a joint project with JCBA students.  The JCB Academy Open Day is on Saturday 4 October and St Patrick’s Technical College will have a display as part of that event featuring the all exchange students and staff.  Students will visit a number of the Academy’s local industry partners, including the JCB World Headquarters.  There will also be a number of social activities planned as well as a trip to London at the end of the two weeks.  A detailed program will be discussed at the Information Evening in February.