Duke Of Edinburgh update

Duke Of Edinburgh update

Wey Valley students go from strength to strength with Silver Award

Over 50 Year 11 students from the Wey Valley School are expected to complete their Silver level Duke of Edinburgh Award this year.  The climax of the Award was two gruelling expeditions with cycling in Devon and walking over the Quantock Hills.

Mr Salmon, Head of PE confirmed that the students have been exceptional on the course this year with over 1,620 voluntary hours of support in community and as a result, the students have gained a diverse range of sports and skills. Students have also used these skills to complement their other studies in school.

Mr Salmon added that the cycle expedition, which included 4 teams of students, followed the Devon ‘Coast to Coast’ long distance route from Ilfracombe to Plymouth over three days. The 110 mile route was planned, practiced for and executed independently by the students and proved a real challenge in navigation and fitness. The recent weather added to the challenge with fallen trees and saturated ground.

Liam Tewkesbury, a Year 11 student on the cycle expedition commented on the great preparation leading up to the expedition as students camped during the three day venture and had to carry all the camping kit with them on their bikes. Liam also added the great teamwork across the group as all students supported each other and completed the trail on time during the three days.

The walking expedition took place over the Quantock Hills for the assessment with practice sessions in North Dorset.  Mr Salmon reported that the routes were a real challenge and the teams worked well together to travel and camp independently. Highlights included good weather, visiting beautiful wild meadows and great camaraderie within the group.

Annabelle Fall, in Year 11, who took part in the walking expedition thoroughly enjoyed the trek, noting team work and the opportunity to now consider the Gold Award which many students will take on at Wey Valley next year. Annabelle added that students will need to participate in a residential trip, apply physical, knowledge and voluntary skills for a further year to gain the Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award.

Mr Salmon remarked that the Wey Valley School has the highest uptake of students in Dorset for the Duke of Edinburgh Award and the skills and experiences have developed our students into great role models. All students have shown considerable progress in confidence and independent learning and have been a delight to work with this year.  Many now wish to move onto the Gold Award and as such would become one of the rare 4 % of young people to complete all three awards.  The school wishes them every success.