St John Plessington Catholic College

Duke of Edinburgh Award

The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award has been running in school for over 20 years. We are delighted to have been a Directly Licensed Center since 2012 meaning that we can offer all levels of the Award to our pupils with the help of our committed, highly skilled staff.

The Award at SJP is run in school by staff from many different departments who generously volunteer their evenings and weekends to help run expeditions. This supports Mr. Jones and Mr. Shillinglaw who oversee the running of the Award including registration, eDofE support, expedition planning and awards evenings.

The sense of adventure that our students show, coupled with the skill and dedication of our staff has seen the DofE Award go from strength to strength is growing from strength. Since 2012 we have encourage all students in year 9 to take up the challenge of the Bronze Award. This has been a huge success as we often see over 180 year 9’s who grasp this opportunity each year.  This is continued through the levels as we have a high number of students who wish to carry on through Silver and Gold.

The Award offers our students so much in terms valuable life skills along with being highly sought after for job and university applications. These skills are gained through completion of skill, physical volunteering and expedition sections. These sections have challenged our students to learn new skills, try new sports and give generously of their time to others in the community. The range and breadth of activities our students do is simply breathtaking, for example: working in charity shops; fundraising with organisations; supporting local youth groups or primary schools; working in local parishes; playing for local and county sports teams; developing musical or artistic skill; mentoring and supporting younger pupils, to name but a few.  The students’ online record keeping testifies to their progress and the gratitude of the people they help and is always a joy to read and is a credit to their efforts and character.

We are very thankful to everyone who supports our students on their DofE journey, especially parents and carers and those who assess and support students in their skill, physical or volunteering sections.

Each award gained is a huge achievement for our students and we are very proud when their hard work and commitment is recognised at the annual Awards evening. It really is a joy to watch students develop in confidence through all levels of the Award and very much personifies the aim of our college to empower students not to have more but to be more.