A UNIQUE educational partnership between West Cumbria and China has been strengthened with the opening of two new schools.

The historic St Bees School has this week opened two offspring schools in China – a primary school in Shijiazhuang in the Hebei Province and a high school in Dongguan in the Guangdong Province – both of which will take the iconic ‘St Bees’ name.

By opening the new schools in China, St Bees and its Hong Kong-based managers the Full Circle Education Group can pioneer a ‘fusion curriculum’, offering a free-flow of learning which gives St Bees and Chinese-based students the option to exchange schools for parts of their education, allowing them to explore a different culture and experience. The curriculums will run in parallel so allow for a seamless transition.

The team launch the two St Bees China schools.

The schools’ opening events were attended by more than 1,000 interested parents, and guests included Roger Sinnett (Headmaster of St Bees School), Mark George (Head of the Trustees of St Bees) and Mike Starkie (Mayor of Copeland).

Full Circle CEO Danny Wang is joined by Mike Starkie
and Roger Sinnett.

Mr Sinnett said: “A number of other British schools have set up international campuses in the East. However, as part of the new St Bees School structure, St Bees UK will be the mothership of an exciting, pioneering venture that’s unparalleled by other institutes.”

“The school is leading the way in merging the best elements of Western education with the foremost elements of an Eastern education. The results are simply phenomenal, and merely a year after reopening, students at St Bees are already performing over two years ahead of their peers.”

Headmaster Roger Sinnett addresses the audience.

“They are loving education and learning and now have even more opportunities for a global exchange so they can truly become international citizens of tomorrow.”

“As we build up our student numbers following our reopening, parents want reassurance that we have the resources in place to deliver our vision. These two openings confirm that we do.”

“With capacities of 1,600 and 500, they are an integral part of the St Bees network and take us on our next step in the further development of the Cumbrian campus, St Bees UK.”

“These Chinese schools cannot exist without us, enabling us to demonstrate our long-term commitment to UK-based students and parents.”

“Current parents at the school say that it has already made a difference to their child’s education, and they talk passionately about our innovative curriculum and the dedication and enthusiasm of our staff, and long may that continue.”

Mr Starkie said: “I was delighted to be invited to China to help launch the two new schools; St Bees Schijiazhuang and St Bees Dongguan.”

“My mission was to speak to the two Chinese communities about the very best of what Copeland can offer to their children.”

Danny Wang, Mike Starkie and Mike Graham.

“By welcoming more students from China to study at St Bees School and strengthening the links between the countries, it will hopefully encourage students within Copeland to consider St Bees as an option.”

“As part of our growth agenda, we need to provide independent schooling as part of our educational offer. St Bees has been part of Copeland’s fabric since 1583, and I am proud to support this positive and innovative initiative to help it progress and thrive.”

The next open day at St Bees UK is on Saturday 16th November, in addition to a ‘St Bees Question Time’ on Thursday 21st November. Further details are available at


  1. Astonishing stuff! I wish all uccess and prosperity to the renascent St Bees – both in Copeland and in China!

    1. Wonderful news! Such a credit to the hard work of those who have achieved this continuing tradition of St Bees education.

  2. Wonderful news and all credit to those who have worked so hard to ensure that education continues in the tradition of what St. Bees has long provided! VeObestvwishes

  3. Many congratulations St Bees Schools and best wishes for a forward thinking prosperous future! Great to see Copeland supporting such a great endeavour also!

  4. I’m sure Archbishop Grindal and the succession of stalwarts who helped the School to thrive for over four centuries would be thrilled to see the developments of recent years.
    It is so uplifting to hear and read about current developments and know after an anguishing period we can look to a very bright future for the School.
    Well done to all concerned – it would be invidious to mention individuals so I say ALL concerned.

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