Combined Cadet Force
We are proud to have a flourishing Combined Cadet Force (CCF) open to all students from Year 8 upwards. There is an Army and a Royal Air Force (RAF) Section that provides exciting opportunities for our future young leaders.
One Contingent Field Weekend is allocated per term, typically beginning on a Thursday evening and returning home on the Sunday afternoon.
A rough outline of the combined syllabus of training followed by all cadets is given below:
- Year 8 & 9 Basic Training
- Year 10 Advanced Training
- Year 11 Instructional Technique, Command & Leadership
- Lower Sixth: Junior Instructors
- Upper Sixth: Senior Instructors
The syllabuses for both Sections allow for Joint Training. All cadets cover: Drill, Turnout, Military Knowledge, Navigation, Skill at Arms and Marksmanship, and basic Fieldcraft.
After completing Basic Training the Cadets are able to specialize in either Army or RAF based training. During this advanced training the cadets will further develop the basic knowledge and practical experience they have gained in areas such as, Fieldcraft, Competitive Marksmanship, Aircraft Theory, Aircraft Flight, and Leadership, to name but a few. There is also the opportunity to attend a number of MoD sponsored courses specialising in subject areas.
There are opportunities to carry out expeditions and adventure training. The events allow the Cadets to gain advanced training in activities such as, canoeing, climbing, mountaineering, skiing, caving and mountain biking. These courses run in very small groups to allow the Cadets to receive dedicated one-to-one instruction. All Cadets have the opportunity to take part in the Duke of Edinburgh Award as well. The CCF Syllabus contributes towards some of the sections.
Duke of Edinburgh Award
The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme (DofE) is voluntary and available to all students from Year 9 and above. Taking part in the Award works extremely well with CCF. A lot of the skills in one area can be used in the other areas.
Our Award programme is hugely popular with all students. The School is very proud to have one of the highest completion rates in the UK. On average 95-98% of students complete their Award, compared to the 55% national average (DofE National Statistics March 2022).
The format for the Award is run so any individual student is able to achieve all three levels of the Award - Bronze, Silver and Gold - by the time they finish Sixth Form:
- Year 9 – Bronze Award
- Year 10 – Silver Award
- Year 11 – DofE Gap year (for GCSE exams)
- Sixth Form - Gold
Students can complete the various sections of the Award whilst participating in regular school activities. If they choose, they can also do this outside of the school and have the ability to gain advice from the School’s DofE Manager who is employed at full-time for DofE. The expedition phase of the Award is the main element of the Award. The school is fully equipped to run both walking and open canoe-based expeditions. If students wish to explore other modes of travel such as a horseback or bike-based expedition these can be catered for.
Biannually we also run an overseas-based expedition. In 2019, a group of 12 students took part in a 3-week canoe expedition in Canada. All equipment is supplied for the expeditions, the students receive full training on how to use it and are fully prepared for the expedition phase by our experienced staff.
The Award is a challenge, but well worth the hard work. DofE is one of the best-known additional qualifications a young person can gain in the UK. Having all three levels of the Award on a CV or for a UCAS application adds significant value.