The Duke of Edinburgh's Award Scheme is the world’s leading youth achievement award. It encourages young people to push their personal boundaries, gain new skills and enhance CVs and University applications.
At Wellington the DofE scheme is voluntary with pupils able to enter the Bronze award in Year 9, Silver in Year 10 and Gold in Year 12. There is every opportunity for pupils to gain all three awards and perhaps go to Buckingham Palace to accept their coveted Gold Award.
Qualified leaders guide pupils through the various sections of the award and then onto, and often the highlight, the expedition.
Our belief at Wellington is that if you are participating in the award and each year you take regular physical activity, learn a new skill, volunteer to help in your local community and go on a challenging adventure, then you have gone a long way to making the best of your time at the school.
The main source of information regarding the Award is the D of E website (www.dofe.org) and almost all you need to know is discussed there.
Pupils can start their Bronze D of E at the start of Year 9. Training will take place at the same time as the CCF Autumn and Spring Exercises (Friday only). There is no requirement to attend a weekly meeting. Pupils will then take part in a two-day practice expedition and a two-day assessed expedition. These typically take place on the Blackdowns and Quantocks. All dates are below. The cost of the Award is £85.
We would anticipate the pupils should be able to complete their Bronze Award by the end of Year 9. Completing the Bronze Award reduces the time needed to complete their Silver Award from 12 months to 6 months.
All enquiries about Bronze D of E should be directed to Mrs Bishop.
The Pupils can start their Silver D of E at the start of Year 10. If they have not taken part in the Bronze Award they will attend a weekly training session after school to organise their personal programme and to train for the expedition component. If they have completed Bronze they will complete some refresher training organised with their group leader before undertaking their three-day practice expedition. They will then complete a three-day assessed expedition. These typically take place on Exmoor or similar terrain. Some pupils take the option of mountain biking or canoeing, instead of walking, for their expedition. Dates are below. The cost of the Award is £100.
We would anticipate the pupils should be able to complete their Silver Award by the end of Year 10. Completing the Silver Award reduces the time needed to complete their Gold Award from 18 months to 12 months.
Any queries about Silver DofE should be directed to Mrs Clewes.
The timescales are given below:
One section for 6 months and one for 3 months
3 days / 2 nights
Pupils who have not completed their Bronze Award must also spend a further 6 months on either their volunteering or the longer of their physical or skills section
Pupils can start their Gold DofE at the start of Year 12. They have weekly meetings after school to organise their personal programme and to train for the expedition component. Pupils will then typically participate in three training days, a three day practice expedition and a four day final expedition.
Expeditions and training typically take place on Dartmoor, the Brecon Beacons and in Scotland.
We would anticipate the pupils should be able to complete their Gold Award by the end of Year 12. The Gold Award also contains an additional residential section.
Any queries about Gold DofE should be directed to Mr Legg.
The timescales are given below:
One section for 12 months and one for 6 months
4 days / 3 nights
5 days / 4 nights
Pupils who have not completed their Silver Award must also spend a further 6 months on either their volunteering or the longer of their physical or skills section
Please click here for the kit list from the D of E website. The importance of adequate kit cannot be overstated. Stout boots and serviceable waterproofs can make the difference between the experience of a lifetime and a thoroughly miserable 48 hours.
The School will provide many major items such as tent, stove and fuel, mess-tins, maps and compass and essential emergency equipment. We also have a small store of sleeping bags and roll mats available.
Much equipment can be purchased at very reasonable prices and will provide good service for years to come. Purchasing advice is at the bottom of the list but please contact the D of E team at School if you have any queries.
The D of E Award is a rewarding and fulfilling experience. Reward and fulfilment do not, however, come without effort. The expectation, at Wellington School and nationally, is that young people undertaking their D of E will show initiative and responsibility. Highly trained, professional staff will provide training, guidance, encouragement, resources and safeguarding but ultimately, pupils themselves will be responsible for their own progress.
The expedition is no exception to the above. Whilst pupils will be fully trained and risk will be managed professionally and to the highest standards, the expedition will be physically challenging. Pupils will not be under permanent supervision and will have to plan and behave accordingly.