RGS offers every pupil the chance to participate in the longstanding and very well-regarded Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme, offering those who complete their Gold Award the chance to be presented with their certificate by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh at St. James’ Palace.
The DofE scheme is designed to offer the participant opportunities to develop independence and teamwork. It is also recognised by potential employers and prospective businesses and companies as a good indicator of all-round personal development. In addition to this, the scheme intends to foster and encourage the principles of self-reliance, commitment and patience in participants.
The scheme itself consists of three awards: Bronze (done in Years Nine and Ten), Silver award (done in Year Eleven) and Gold Award (done in Sixth Form). Each award has four common sections (Volunteering, Skill, Physical and Expedition) while Gold has an additional one (Residential).
In keeping with the scheme’s aim for independence and self-reliance, pupils decide for themselves what they will do for each section. This means they gain recognition and reward for co-curricular activities they may already be doing at RGS. Pupils plan, train for, and complete an expedition together. Participants do several practice expeditions for each Award so that they are both prepared and trained ready to complete their qualifying expedition.
In recent years, expedition locations have been as diverse as walking in the Brecon Beacons, The Lake District, Snowdonia and more locally Long Mynd. Cycling along the Celtic Way and canoeing and sea kayaking in Sweden and Scotland!