Independent School Parent
Community Outreach EMANUEL SCHOOL
The continued success of its Primary Ambitions programme and the work it has done to close lockdown learning gaps make this London school a clear joint winner in this category
An integral aim of this school is to build and nurture mutually beneficial relationships with schools and community organisations in the local area. The goal is to ensure that pupils have a sense of responsibility, purpose and an understanding that they can make a significant difference to the world around them.
Emanuel’s work in the community permeates every aspect of school life. All pupils from years six to 13 are involved in outreach programmes that are an integral part of the curriculum.
More than 180 pupils participate in the Duke of Edinburgh programme each year, volunteering thousands of hours between them. Links with the local community are commended through school newsletters, form time and assemblies, with stand-out student contributions recognised by Community Partnership school prizes.
The flagship Primary Ambitions programme is central to the school’s work in the community. Every Friday, Emanuel’s lower sixth students teaches local year six pupils from 18 state schools with a high proportion of pupils on free school meals. Students teach 20 modules, covering the arts, language, literature, politics, science, tech, maths and sport. The emphasis is on Emanuel students running each session, enabling them to develop leadership, coaching and mentoring skills as well as further developing confidence, empathy and respect for others.
Given the restrictions posed by Covid-19, partner schools have needed more support than ever. Throughout the pandemic, Emanuel’s lower sixth students embraced the challenge, adapting and developing the Primary
“A PROJECT THAT STARTED WITH A PUPIL IDEA IN 2017 HAS TAKEN LIFE, AND NOW ensures 1,200 primary pupils come to our school FOR COACHING, MENTORING AND TEACHING FROM EMANUEL STUDENTS”
Ambitions programme to a lessonsin-a-box format. Students prepared lesson plans and materials, group and individual activities and how-to videos, which were all delivered to partner schools to enable valuable enrichment activities to continue remotely.
The school has continued to help close the gap for pupils whose education has been hardest hit by school closures. The Ascent programme, developed through consultation with partner schools, consists of Saturday morning sessions for year five pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds who are failing to meet national standards in literacy and mathematics. Curriculum-linked sessions in these subjects, alongside interactive sessions in science, sport and the arts, are taught by Emanuel staff, enabling pupils to catch up, consolidate knowledge and build confidence.
Each year, more than 6,500 children and young adults participate in community programmes. Now Covid-19 restrictions have been lifted, the school will strive to do even more. Headmaster Robert Milne said: “A project that started with a pupil idea in 2017 has taken life, and now ensures 1,200 primary pupils come to our school for coaching, mentoring and teaching from Emanuel students. Everyone involved in the Primary Ambitions partnership is delighted with the recognition and is motivated to do even more in the next five years.” emanuel.org.uk