In addition to the above, students in Year 9 are strongly encouraged to begin taking part in the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme (DofE). The scheme is designed to provide young people with fundamental life skills through challenges and activities; in turn, encouraging confidence, tenacity, and selflessness. It is also a particularly worthwhile addition to university and job applications, demonstrating an ability to go the extra mile.
The scheme is comprised of three different milestones; Bronze, Silver, and Gold, with each one requiring the successful competition of several key challenges before moving to the next level. At Lucton, Bronze is completed in Year 9, Silver in Year 10, and Gold generally in Year 11-12. Regardless of the level, there are several common key indicators that must be achieved in all.
Skill: Students will be expected to grasp a new skill; from learning a musical instrument, to understanding how to administer first aid, the choice is theirs.
Physical: A key requirement is to take part in a sport or physical activity that has not been experienced before, and to set an achievable goal to measure success. Again, the choice is down to the student and could include anything from lacrosse and fencing, to weight training or rock climbing.
Volunteering: Aimed at encouraging community spirit and selflessness, some will choose to undertake charity work and community projects, whilst others may prefer to provide first aid support at various events, or to help younger students with their studies.
Expedition: Many requirements of the Duke of Edinburgh Award can be attained through Lucton’s Combined Cadet Force (CCF), not least of which the opportunity to take part in expeditions all over the UK. At Bronze level these last for 2 days and 1 night; however, those that achieve Gold are required to complete 4 days and 3 nights, including 1 night of “wild camping”.
Successful completion of Bronze and Silver levels earns a certificate and badge; however, those that achieve the coveted Gold award will also attend a presentation at Buckingham Palace and, even more importantly, a tremendous sense of personal satisfaction and pride.