Youngsters at Boldon School have the chance to be part of a £50million cadet scheme.
The Government announced today that the Boldon Colliery school was one of 25 nationally chosen to be part of the Cadet Expansion Programme.
Thousands of students, many often from less prosperous areas, are set to benefit from the scheme, building new skills, such as team-work, problem solving and leadership that school cadet units bring.
These will be opened in areas where previously opportunities such as this were limited and Boldon's Sea Cadet unit is set to launch in September this year.
Ingrid Moir, head of post 16 education at Boldon School, is leading the project and said she was delighted with the news they have been chosen by the Minister of Defence and the Department of Education for the project.
She said she has had links with the Sea Cadets for around 25 years, so they school was keen to get involved with the new programme.
Mrs Moir said: "This will be a brand new group and we will only be recruiting from the school."
They will be holding assemblies over the coming weeks to explain to the young people what the group is all about and they have already had a lot of interest from the pupils.
She said young people interested in joining the school's Sea Cadet Unit also have the opportunity to take part in a free summer camp at MOD Caledonia in Rosyth for four nights in June, to find out more about the operation.
The Sea Cadets is a uniformed youth organisation that provides training opportunities based on the principles of the Royal Navy.
This new wave of cadet units follows an announcement last year by Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon on another 25, as the government remains on target to have a total of 500 running in UK schools by 2020.
The CEP is backed by £50million funding from LIBOR banking fines, which pays for set up costs, the students’ uniforms, equipment and training.
Defence Minister Mark Lancaster, said: "These new units help deliver on the Government’s manifesto commitment that more students should be able to enjoy the rewards of joining the cadets from every background.
"Cadet Forces offer a fantastic opportunity for students, providing exciting new opportunities and helping to instill the positive values of citizenship, responsibility and fairness.”
The cadet units are aimed at providing challenging and enjoyable activities for students, offering them the opportunity to learn new skills, engage in adventurous activities and help them gain vocational BTEC qualifications.
Headteachers of some of the school already running cadet units, have said having cadets as students improves attendance and classroom behavior and research has shown an increase in academic achievement, self-esteem and self-confidence.