The Mount Vernon School announced it has formed a strategic partnership with The Dewey Schools in Vietnam.

The graduating class of 2025 will be the first to include a cohort from Vietnam, who will also receive a diploma from the Sandy Springs-based private school.

Mount Vernon Head of School Kristy Lundstrom told Rough Draft that students will benefit from the connection with The Dewey Schools (TDS) through interacting with friends from different cultures in everyday activities. They may learn a new skill together, visit new places, and talk about their interests and ambitions.

“The more we know, the more we grow. We want Mount Vernon to be a diverse community. This enduring partnership is an important step in achieving that goal,” she said.

Mount Vernon hopes to have five to seven students from Vietnam during the first year and with additional students in the years to come.

“So far, they are loving Atlanta during their summer exchange program,” Lundstrom said.

Mount Vernon Ventures, (MVV) – the strategy, research, and consulting arm of The Mount Vernon School – developed the initial partnership in 2020. It provided TDS access to Mount Vernon’s K-12 curriculum which focuses on inquiry-based learning and competency-based educational pedagogical approaches, according to a press release.

Through the relationship, TDS students will have the opportunity to attend The Mount Vernon School for their junior and/or senior year to receive a Mount Vernon School diploma. Or they can participate online via The Mount Vernon School Online and receive a dual diploma from both schools.

“In the Mount Vernon mission statement, we aim to graduate ‘globally competitive’ students. This is of high value to The Dewey Schools as well. The partnership between Mount Vernon and The Dewey Schools will provide cultural immersion and prepare them to be globally competitive,” Lundstrom said.

The partnership will provide opportunities for students, faculty, and staff in both countries to increase their global perspective through curriculum development, onsite visits, and opportunities for exchange, according to a press release from Mount Vernon School.

Members of the MVV team traveled to Vietnam in September 2022 to visit two TDS campuses, Tay Ho Tay in Hanoi and Hai Phong. The team observed classrooms, interviewed teachers, and provided feedback to administrators and teachers. The MVV team saw Mount Vernon School norms on walls, maker labs, and art rooms with projects from Mount Vernon’s campus.

A group of Mount Vernon Upper School students traveled to Vietnam and visited TDS Tay Ho Tay in March. The meeting helped the students of both schools get to know each other and broaden their understanding of the country and people of the two nations.

Fourteen TDS students visited metro Atlanta from July 7-21 for a Summer Cultural Immersion Program on The Mount Vernon School campus. The program focused on design thinking, humanities, art innovation, and maker, and included visits to Savannah College of Arts and Design, Georgia Tech, and the University of Georgia. .

Bob Pepalis covers Sandy Springs for Rough Draft Atlanta and Reporter Newspapers.