Duke of Edinburgh's Award


The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is a personal challenge from the Duke himself to today’s youth. It is concerned with personal development and aims to get young people involved in new activities or to develop others they already enjoy. Each pupil is allocated a group leader from the staff team, who ensures they have advice and help on how to complete the Award. Successful candidates receive a certificate.

The award is progressive and operates at Bronze, Silver and Gold levels. It is very popular, commencing in Year 10 for Bronze and Year 11 for Silver. CCF Squadron cadets operate on a different timeline and can progress onto the Gold Award after completion of Silver.

To achieve the Award, pupils complete four sections: Skills, Volunteering, Physical Recreation and the Expedition.

The Skills section encourages pupils to develop areas of competence, for example by gaining a first-aid qualification.
Service encourages pupils to help out their local community.
Physical Recreation is aimed at getting the pupils to be active on a regular basis.

These sections must be undertaken for a minimum of three months for the Bronze Award and six months for the Silver – so a great deal of personal commitment is required. This means that many employers now view the Award as an extra qualification, and it gives pupils great satisfaction to be able to say that they met the challenge set by the Duke of Edinburgh and gained their Award.

Expeditions are run in house by the Outdoor Education Department, taking place in the summer term. Pupils plan their own expeditions are self-planned and are unaccompanied. Expeditions encourage and develop courage, teamwork, self-reliance, decision-making, planning and leadership skills in addition to enjoying and appreciating the countryside. Pupils are required to attend training sessions on campcraft, navigation, risk assessment, first aid and route planning.

The Bronze Expedition currently takes place in Kent, where around the North Downs. Pupils are required to cover 20 miles over two days with full packs, spending one night under canvas. A degree of physical fitness is a necessity here.
The Silver Expedition takes pupils to East Sussex and the rolling landscape of the South Downs, where geographical highlights include the Seven Sisters, Cuckmere Haven and Pevensey Bay. Candidates plan their own routes covering 30 miles and two nights under canvas.

Colfe’s has authority from the DofE Award scheme to administer its own DofE activities.