Gordano School wins Department for Education ‘Character Award’

Gordano School has just received an award from the Department for Education, for its work in developing character within pupils.

Nicky Morgan, Education Secretary, announced the 21 Schools and 6 Charities that have won this year’s Character awards on the 25th February. Gordano School has been singled out as the only Secondary School in the South West to obtain this national accolade.

Gordano’s application, submitted in December 2014, highlighted the work that Gordano does to promote outstanding effort in pupils.

Gary Lewis, Headteacher, said,

“It is very encouraging to know that the work that we are doing here with our young people meets this national gold standard.”

Gordano School’s strapline is ‘Pride, Achievement and Community’, and this is a mindset that we hope each member of the school aspires to attain. Pride, reflected in hard work and good attitudes towards each other and the school. Achievement, attained through success in learning, participation of activities within the curriculum and also through a wide range of extra-curricular activity. Community, an essential factor in our school of over 1850 pupils, developed through house activities, lessons and extra-curricular events within the school, and externally within Gordano’s wider environment.

Gordano’s extra-curricular programme, Gordano Extra, launched in 2014. The scheme, open to Years 7 -11, has been a fantastic way to introduce pupils to new experiences and activities, and relies heavily upon the willingness of Gordano Staff and local community members to give up their time to work with pupils in a range of activities. Gordano has appointed an Extra-Curricular Coordinator, who oversees the club activities and publicises the extra-curricular programme to staff and pupils.

Gordano also has done major work in promoting an ‘outstanding effort culture’ with staff and pupils alike. The Effort Profile has been developed by staff, governors and students within Gordano School to define our expectations of effort and to support students and parents in understanding how to improve their resilience, independence and self management skills. It is a self-assessment resource that students and parents are familiar with, and is used in both the classroom and pastoral system.

From September, students will have access to an online portal where they will self-reflect on the skills that they develop during their time at the school.

Community involvement within the Gordano Partners scheme brings local businesses into the school to encourage greater knowledge of the workplace and business practices. Student engagement with business breakfasts, mock interviews, work experience and careers workshops provides a wide range of opportunities for pupils to increase their understanding of the work place, and the skills that they need to develop in order to enter the workplace once leaving school.

The Character Award brings a £15,000 prize fund, and the opportunity to go head-to-head with the other nominated Character Award winners in March, where a further £20,000 prize fund will be awarded to the overall winner.

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