Duke of Edinburgh's Award Scheme
The aim of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is to encourage independence in young people outside the classroom and it is an internationally recognised qualification which has been defined as the second most important qualification that employers and universities look for after academic achievement. St Joseph’s Catholic College has offered the award as part of its extra-curricular programme for over 17 years and is now its own operating authority. As well as this, several staff members are qualified expedition assessors. All pupils in Year 9 are encouraged to enrol in the Bronze award and many of these will continue with the Silver award in Year 10. In the Sixth Form students are encouraged to work towards the Gold award, with some joining the programme as direct entrants at 16.
At each level, pupils are expected to complete a series of practical and adventurous challenges and it is up to each individual to organise and complete each one with support from the College. These include learning a skill, doing something physical, volunteering in some way and completing a practise and assessment expedition (which is organised and supervised by the College and for which students prepare for through after-school training sessions). At Gold level students are also required to attend a residential for at least four nights with people they are unfamiliar with.
The areas that students visit for their practice and qualifying expeditions include the Ridgeway, the Mendip Hills, the Brecon Beacons and Dartmoor. The College has a good stock of expedition equipment to lend to students to ensure the opportunity is available to all.
A spokesperson for the scheme was recently quoted as saying
'The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme is concerned with empowering young people to take greater responsibility for their own lives, to discover new talents, to advocate on behalf of others and to take positive action in the community.'
For further information on the Award click here: www.dofe.org
For any queries regarding the Duke of Edinburgh's Award please contact one of the following members of staff depending on the nature of your query:
Duke of Edinburgh Award Centre Manager: Mrs J Hall
Duke of Edinburgh Award Leader: Mrs K Moss