Notice for Madrid Trip

We kindly ask that all students visiting Madrid in half term, bring their suitcase and hand luggage for a quick check during crew time on Thursday 18th May. This is just to check the suitability and sizes to ensure that we have no problems with the airline. Just the empty bag is fine, but we recommend where possible that students also bring the suitcase padlock, again to avoid any potential problems when travelling.

Thanks for your continued support.

IMPORTANT DATE CHANGES for DofE expedition weekends!!

We have made some changes to the dates for the practice weekend expedition and the assessed weekend expeditions in May & June.

After listening to students and also realising the amount of time staff will be taking out of their own time to cover the DofE weekends we have decided to move them to a Friday & Saturday rather than a Saturday & Sunday.

Therefore the new dates are as follows:

Friday 5th & Saturday 6th May

Friday 12th & Saturday 13th May

Friday 17th & Saturday 18th June

Friday 23rd & Saturday 24th June

Students will stay with the same weekend they have already been given.

Let me know if you have any problems with this.


Y9 FIELDWORK 6th MARCH- Admiral and Skipper

Y9 fieldwork for both Admiral and Skipper will be taking place on Monday 6th March, the first day back after the half-term holidays.

We will be leaving school after crew at around 9.30 and we should arrive back at school before the end of the school day.

All students must bring a packed lunch, warm outdoor clothing and comfortable footwear.

Y9 Hums Admiral and Skipper Extended Study- due Friday 3rd Feb

Student should re-read the chapters handed to them in class which include the artilleryman (Book 1 Chapter 11 and Book 2 Chapter 7) and must examine how the artilleryman changes. Students must ‘track’ the text (select and highlight key points) and write a brief summative answer of how/why they believe he’s changed, using quotations to support their answer.

DofE practise Walk in February.

As part of the training for their practise and assessed expeditions, we have planned a day practise walk for year 9 students in February. The date for your child will either be Saturday 11th or Saturday 18th February. Those going on the 11th February are those that have their practice expedition weekend on the 6th May. Those going on the 18th February are those that have their practice expedition on the 13th May. You will know the expedition dates at your SLC.

A letter will be sent home shortly with more information about the day.

Please can I state that students MUST wear walking boots with ankle support, other footwear will not be allowed. If you have any problems with this please let me know or speak with your crew leader. They must also have a water proof jacket and trousers. These items are not optional, they are necessary for the safety and well being of your child and they will not be able to take part with out these items.

Everything you need to know will be in the letter and on the DofE page of the web site.

Please email me if you have any questions.



DofE Expedition Weekend dates

Year 9 DofE Bronze award students will be completing 2 weekend expeditions. The first is a practice expedition, the latter an assessed expedition.

The practice weekend for your child will either be the 6/7th May or 13/14th May followed by the assessed weekend which will either be the 17/18th June or the 24/25th June.

You will be able to get these dates at the upcoming SLC’s.

Further information about the expeditions will be available very soon. If you have any questions please email me.


Y9 Fieldwork 3rd and 4th Jan

Hello and happy new year to you all! 

Just a reminder that Y9 Admiral will be out on fieldwork tomorrow, 3rd Jan and Y9 Skipper on Wednesday 4th Jan. 

Please remember to bring a packed lunch, make sure you are wearing warm clothing (big coats, hats, gloves and scarves necessary) and wear comfortable footwear that you don’t mind getting dirty/muddy. 

We will be leaving school at 8.30 and will arrive back at approximately 3.30, traffic permitting.

XP Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme.

The DofE Mission

‘To inspire, guide and support young people in their self-development and recognise their achievements’.

Dear Parent / Carer,

I am really excited to be leading the Duke of Edinburgh Award at XP. It brings back so many great memories from when I did it at school. I was lucky enough to be able to complete and achieve my Bronze, Silver and Gold awards. I believe that this achievement opened many doors for me and gave me experiences I wouldn’t have otherwise discovered. The Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme was introduced by Kurt Hahn, the same person who co-created Outward Bound, which Expeditionary Learning emerged from.

“There are so many rewards for young people who do DofE programmes and achieve an award. Its balanced programme of activities develops the whole person – mind, body and soul, in an environment of social interaction and team working”

The DofE Awards handbook for DofE Leaders

So at XP, all our students will begin their Duke of Edinburgh Award in year 9 starting with the Bronze award which they will complete by the end of the academic year.

The Bronze Award consists of a programme chosen by the student which includes a skill, physical and a voluntary section plus the completion of an outdoor expedition.

Volunteering: Undertaking service to individuals or the community

Physical: Improving in an area of sport, dance or fitness activities.

Skills: Developing practical and social skills and personal interests.

Expedition: Planning, training for and completion of an adventurous journey in the UK or abroad.

Two of the activities (excluding the expedition) must be done for at least an hour a week for a minimum of 3 months and the other activity for at least an hour a week for a minimum of 6 months. Each activity is monitored and finally assessed by someone with knowledge of that activity such as a coach (this can not be a family member). We expect students to continue these activities throughout the year, after the compulsory period where possible.

At the beginning of the year students were given access to their DofE online portfolios called ‘eDofE’. This is accessed through the DofE web site. Here they record their chosen activities along with their aims and goals. They must also upload evidence of their weekly activity which can be done in the form of scanned photos, images, notes etc. Students also need to ensure their paper activity log is signed by their assessor each week to confirm their participation.

XP provides a wide range of activities covering all three disciplines from cookery, gardening, clean up crew, table tennis, media crew, school magazine and more. A timetable of these activities  is available  to students in the DofE google classroom. It is also posted on the DofE section of the school website. If you would like to receive announcements and updates that are on the google classroom please ask your child to invite you to join.

As well as school-led activities, students can also choose activities outside of school, which we strongly encourage. There are lists of possible activity ideas posted in the DofE google classroom.

Although students are responsible for their own progress through the programme, their DofE leader and crew leader will be regularly tracking their progress. Every fortnight one crew session is allocated to DofE allowing students time to upload evidence to their portfolios and discuss any problems or issues they are having. We encourage you to actively monitor your child’s progress.

Students who do not need to do any school-led activities on Friday afternoon have the option of leaving school at 2:15pm, or staying in extended study.

In February, the friday afternoon activity sessions will end. This time will be used to prepare students for their outdoor expedition which takes place in May & June 2017. Following a successful practice expedition in May, students will then do their assessed expedition in June. Specific dates of the expedition weekends will be posted shortly.

Students will be trained in skills such as navigation, route planning and camp craft so that they are fully prepared for the expeditions. Bronze expeditions consist of 2 days hiking and one night camping.

I hope this helps you understand the DofE at XP. Our website is updated with all relevant information, however please feel free to email me if you need any more information.

Many thanks

Kate ap Harri

Voluntary DofE manager