Getting out gains award for school

Year 6 pupils at Valley Road Primary School, Corporation Road, Sunderland, celebrate winning a national learning outside the classroom award.

Year 6 pupils at Valley Road Primary School, Corporation Road, Sunderland, celebrate winning a national learning outside the classroom award.

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TAKING the indoors out has helped a school scoop a national award.

Valley Road Community Primary School has won a National Learning Outside the Classroom, LOtC, Award for its work in getting youngsters out into the big wide world.

The Corporation Road primary in Hendon, Sunderland, beat stiff competition to clinch the award for having the most inspiring and exciting approach to helping pupils learn about life outside their school grounds.

Valley Road Principal Christine Young, said: “We are extremely proud to have received this award. Our teachers work hard to ensure all of our pupils benefit from a programme of learning that motivates, engages and develops their skills and understanding of the world around them.

“Our revised creative curriculum and programme of LOtC activities have had a hugely positive impact on our students and this award reflects that success.”

The LOtC Awards for Excellence and Innovation are presented in recognition of schools’ commitment to providing a creative curriculum that challenges young people and offers regular, real-world, hands-on experiences.

Valley Road underwent a rigorous judging process to demonstrate the breadth, diversity and impact of their learning outside the classroom on the children.

Through a six-year programme and careful redesigning of the curriculum to place quality, first hand, real learning experiences at its heart, young people at the Sunderland school are making significant progress in their thinking and language skills.

SATS results for Key Stage 2 pupils have risen from 40 per cent achieving level 4 in English and maths in 2002 to 70 per cent in 2009.

Judges were also impressed by the school’s Charter of Entitlement, which sets out opportunities for each student, including a minimum of three visits outside school each term.

Young people can take part in activities ranging from cultural excursions to theatres, museums and galleries to surfing at the beach and residential stays in the Lake District.

Students are also encouraged to take part in community events and good partnerships with other schools allows the LOtC provision to extend even further with joint camping trips and musical performances promoting team working, leadership skills and boosting confidence.