Three Bridges students complete DofE for first time

Six students from a small Cornish school which supports young people with autism are taking part in the highly-accredited Duke of Edinburgh Award.

It is the first time students, aged between 16-19, from Three Bridges Education Centre at Blackwater, near Truro, have been involved in DofE, and it is hoped they will achieve their bronze award this year.

The bronze award includes sections on volunteering, improving physical wellbeing, developing practical and social skills, and an expedition.

Jenna Hancock, teacher at Three Bridges, said: “This is a very exciting curriculum development for us as the students are doing what any other students their age are doing – including experiencing their first overnight expedition and vocational opportunities as a result.

“The value of achieving a Duke of Edinburgh Award cannot be underestimated and it supports the development of young people for future life and work.

“The personal and non-competitive nature of the DofE programme enables participants from different starting points to be equally proud of achieving their award based on their own personal challenge and journey.”

The students have been following the bronze expedition training framework within the classroom, working in conjunction with Karin Saunders from Young People Cornwall, and have also been on many short local walks at Tehidy, Carn Brea, St Agnes and Hayle.

They have developed their skills within first aid and emergency procedures, map reading, food technology, swimming and completed work-related learning as part of their volunteering section at a local farm.

In June and July the students will be carrying out a practice and qualifying expedition, with the aim of inspiring their initiative and spirit of adventure.

Last year Three Bridges received an overall “good” rating from Oftsed, with one area rated as outstanding.

The school provides individual learning programmes designed to meet the needs and interests of its students and created to engage, challenge and inspire.

Jenna said: “We are absolutely delighted to be taking part in this special award, and it is proof these young people can achieve whatever they put their minds to.”