STUDENTS
08/09/2015 06:38 BST | Updated 08/09/2015 06:59 BST

A Boarding School Is Offering Places To Orphaned Syrian Refugees

A boarding school in Suffolk is offering two free places to orphaned Syrian refugees, and is asking other schools in the UK to do the same.

Fran D'Alcorn, headteacher of Saint Felix School in Southwold, said boarding school would provide pastoral care as well as education to some of the most vulnerable children entering the country.

D'Alcorn said the issue of young orphans seeking asylum in the country would not be an easy problem to fix, as local authorities would have an "immensely difficult" time trying to place the youths in schools, children's homes or with foster parents.

saint felix school

Saint Felix School, an independent co-ed boarding school in Suffolk

The UK is to accept up to 20,000 Syrian refugees over the next five years, David Cameron announced on Monday.

The Saint Felix School has a history of supporting young people fleeing persecution; during World War One, it assisted Serbian refugees, while in the Christmas of 1938, the school opened its doors to a group of Kindertransport children escaping from Germany. During the Vietnamese Boat crisis then-headteacher Mary Oakeley offered to take children of desperate families into the school.

Robin Fletcher, national director of the Boarding Schools' Association, to which Saint Felix belongs, said the group supported the school.

"We know educating the next generation is key to the future success of any country, not least a war-torn country such as Syria.

"Our boarding communities can provide a safe haven in which the refugees can have access to a strong network of pastoral support and structure including counsellors while continuing their education – arming them with future skills to fight back again the regime within Syria."

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