SIXTH form students gained vital skills to help them progress in their chosen careers through a future leaders’ scheme introduced at Haslingden High School and Sixth Form.
Year 12 students were given the chance to upskill themselves and 80 students stepped up with 86 per cent achieving an ASDAN certificate in Leadership.
The five-step programme developed various skills by getting students to first evaluate themselves and assess their own personality – a Myers Briggs personality test and look at different aspects of leadership in detail.
Opportunities in school and in the community, then led students to further develop skills for life including writing and delivering a speech, taking part in a debate with up to four others and talking to a larger group of people about a subject they were passionate about.
Head of Drama Andy Anderson said: “They had to do 10 weeks of volunteering and within each subject area and faculty at Haslingden High School, there were opportunities for the Year 12s to help with the curriculum or run after-school clubs in science, drama, dance and computing.
“They also created a United Nations debating club and an eco-squad club. One of the students worked with Year 7s to decorate a stairwell with a science display while others worked in the community.
“A student, who also works, helped her manager out by training a new member of staff while others taught survival skills to a Scout group and coached a football team.”
The final stage saw the students evaluating themselves and examining how they had tackled the challenges.
At a special presentation assembly, Mr Anderson presented students who had completed the programme with their certificates and the top 20 also received an Amazon voucher from Headteacher Russell Clarke.
Mr Anderson added: “This is the first year that we have run the programme. It boosts skills and confidence and when students are applying for a Further Education place it is useful for their personal statements.”
Art teacher Helen Leaver said: “Mya worked with two Year 8 groups within our department. She worked in small groups and with certain individuals.
“She has an amazing affinity with children, is very professional and her leadership qualities are exemplary.”
Student Isabelle Booth, 12, said: “During my dance leadership I put myself out of my comfort zone by having to teach a group of students on my own when I would usually be reluctant to do so.
“I quickly realised how rewarding it was to talk and befriend the students, when typically, I would shy away from talking to people I don’t really know.
“I feel this experience has allowed me to develop and appreciate that my open minded and empathetic nature is invaluable and something I’m very glad to have.”
Also running a drama club was Aisha Kirkham. She said: “Going forward, I will definitely use the leadership skills I’ve learned across the project to help build a greater understanding on how to meaningfully interact with and help develop younger students.
“As someone who’s thinking of the teacher pathway this provided a useful insight into what to expect and has given me an educational dimension not many other students get to experience.”
Other teachers remarked on how the students who participated had grown in confidence, shown stamina and excelled.
Headteacher Mr Clarke was proud and delighted to speak to all the students involved.
He told them: “This experience should serve as a strong foundation on which to build and should also provide confidence for all students that they possess the necessary leadership skills to overcome challenges in the future.”
Headteacher Russell Clarke, right, and Head of Drama Andy Anderson, second left, with the top 20 Haslingden High School Future Leaders.