- GEMS Wellington schools are first outside UK to partner Bite Back 2030
- GEMS Wellington Academy – Al Khail launches A-Level Food Technology
DUBAI, UAE: Four GEMS Education schools that together make up the GEMS Wellington group have joined celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s global ‘Bite Back 2030’ campaign with the aim of educating students on the importance of healthy meals and nutrition and furthering their understanding of food technology.
Bite Back 2030 began in the UK, where students have led a movement of young people to step up and take charge of the national conversation on child health and nutrition. Together, they have created and championed strategies within their schools, both at corporate and government level, to tackle rising obesity rates.
The impact of the campaign has already led to policy changes in the UK, and the GEMS Wellington schools are now proud to be the first international partners on this important mission.
The schools involved include GEMS Wellington Academy – Al Khail, GEMS Wellington Academy – Silicon Oasis, GEMS Wellington International School.
The schools’ teachers have been learning from the team of experts at Bite Back 2030 about what has been effective in the UK in terms of creative cooking classes and understanding campaign strategies, which has helped the schools create extra-curricular activities and student-led initiatives such as school recipe books and a review of school canteen menus.
Under the guidance of each GEMS Wellington school’s Bite Back Ambassador, students are discovering the simplicity and sustainability of healthy eating, as well as the impact of food miles and how good nutrition leads to better wellbeing.
Jennifer Kilsby, Bite Back Ambassador, GEMS Wellington Academy – Silicon Oasis, said: “We’re thrilled that our students are so engaged in the Bite Back 2030 campaign and the values it seeks to teach them. In line with UN Sustainable Development Goal Number Three, to promote good health and wellbeing, there is currently a global emphasis on sustainable food systems to support adequate nutrition.
“In secondary, we have been focusing on learning how to cook, prepare and present nutritious meals to meet the needs of teenagers. We have been creating recipes made by Jack Deane, Head Teaching Chef at The Jamie Oliver Cookery School. His recipes have helped inspire the Bite Back team in secondary to create delicious home cooked ‘Fakeaway’-style food, which is quick and easy but more nutritionally balanced than a typical takeaway meal. We are excited to lead this initiative and can’t wait for this movement to grow across all GEMS schools and hopefully even across the UAE.”
A-level Food Technology
Meanwhile, GEMS Wellington Academy – Al Khail (WEK) has become the only school in the UAE to offer A-level Food Technology. Twenty-seven students are already taking GCSE Food Technology, and the new A-level will give these students, as well as new joiners, an opportunity to continue and further their studies in the subject.
Accredited by the Northern Ireland exam board, the new A-level qualification will allow young people to develop the skills and knowledge required to pursue careers in a variety of industries including sports nutrition, catering, hospitality management and sustainable development.
Ursula Rochford, the newly recruited Food Technology Specialist at GEMS Wellington Academy – Al Khail, said: “We are delighted to see the GEMS Wellington group of schools take a lead on healthy eating, food sustainability and learning food technology as a formal subject. Food preparation and nutrition has been an exciting addition to the GCSE curriculum at our academy and has continued to gained popularity year-on-year.
“Our GCSE students are excited that they now have the option to take A-level Food Technology. The course will give them a deeper knowledge of the science of food and a greater understanding of nutrition and healthy eating. It will also develop their cooking skills and allow them to learn a range of complex dishes and focus on both technical and presentation skills.”