Northampton Academy has been awarded Champion School status by the NCS EM1, the regional provider of the National Citizen Service (NCS), a flagship youth programme for 16 and 17-year-olds. The status has been awarded to those institutions who, like Northampton Academy, have excelled in promoting the programme and recruiting young people to take part over the last academic year.
Ninety students from Northampton Academy took the opportunity to do NCS. Each student spent three weeks developing themselves personally and professionally and then afterwards spent 30 hours each engaging in social action. This had a huge impact on the local community. Some of the projects the students would have created, managed and carried out themselves include:
- Cleaning up Abington park
- Renovating Broaden Horizons Garden
- Raising money and awareness for the Cynthia Spencer Hospice
- Fundraising events for the Hope Centre
- Raising awareness and money for the Alzheimer’s Society care homes across Northamptonshire
- Fundraising for Golden Steps Nursery
These are just a handful of the projects that have come from schools in the centre of Northampton. This summer there were over 80 projects carried out by students across Northamptonshire.
The award was presented at the NCS EM1 Champion School Awards Ceremony, held at a Leicester City Football Club on 6 December 2017. The awards recognise the schools and colleges across Lincolnshire, Leicestershire, Rutland and Northamptonshire, who have excelled in endorsing and promoting NCS to their students. Sixty-nine other schools and colleges in the EM1 region also received Champion Status at the ceremony.
Karen Betty, careers manager at Northampton Academy says,
“At Northampton Academy, we recognise the markedly positive effect that participation in NCS programmes has had on both our students and the school. We have seen a notable change in pupil wellbeing and engagement with academic work.
For young people, NCS provides a host of practical and emotional benefits, among them a positive contribution to UCAS personal statements and wider social and personal development. Nationwide nearly three-quarters of those who have taken part in NCS feel more confident about getting a job, and nine in ten feel that it has helped them develop useful skills for the future. They also demonstrate high levels of confidence and resilience, something that we have noted amongst those pupils at Northampton Academy who have graduated from the programme.”
NCS is a unique two or three-week full-time programme focused on fun and discovery, plus 30 hours committed to a community project that benefits both young people and society. On this government-backed programme, participants build skills for work and life, while taking on new challenges and adventures, making new friends, and contributing to their community.
Vicky Breckin, NCS EM1 Regional Coordinator in Leicestershire, said:
“NCS is an investment in the future of young people. Everyone who takes part has the opportunity to develop new skills, meet new friends from different schools, and gain the confidence they need to be successful in life and work.”
“We are delighted to partner with so many schools and colleges across EM1, and we are proud of their tremendous efforts to ensure that as many students as possible get the chance to benefit from the skills and experiences that NCS offers. We could not reach these young people without the support of the schools and colleges, and we look forward to continuing our work together.”