Aspire 2 Me visits Ecclesbourne School
The school brief indicated that some pupils were at risk of becoming potential NEETs (not in education, employment or training) in the future. Aspire 2 Me was recruited to address the situation now to minimise the risk of this happening.
The programme ran as 8 x 1-hour sessions at the beginning of the day (either a Tuesday or a Wednesday) and ran on a weekly basis.
The aim was to encourage team work and trust between students, so they could develop effectively throughout the sessions. This was initially a challenge as students from different year groups took part and were weary about working together. Fortunately, this was quickly overcome with some ice-breakers.
Tony started building their trust and respect by talking about his challenges, both career and personal, and how he overcame them. This got students thinking about their own challenges and gave the group a level playing field from the start, so that they don’t see Tony as a superior, but rather a friend.
Over the 8-week programme, challenges and activities were set to try and test students on their leadership skills, team work and individual pride when succeeding in tasks. The group were fantastic and passed everything Tony threw at them. You could see as each session passed, students grew in confidence as individuals and a team.
The journey culminated in a final exercise, where students had to present their findings to a panel of Head of Year teachers.
Students were split into 2 groups and given the task of putting together a PowerPoint presentation of what it was like growing up as a teenager in Derby. They completed this activity both in 1 session and at home. For the final session, they had to pull all their work together and present it to the panel of teachers.
Tony Lormor said, “The presentations went really well, they were even asked if they could present this to the peers in an assembly in the near future.
Seeing a group of young people come together and see what they can achieve individually and collectively as a group is an amazing feeling.”