A LOCAL primary school has developed a unique way to encourage their pupils to engage in extra-curricular learning by forming its own university.

As part of the newly developed Walford University programme, pupils have been undertaking a range of activities by researching subjects to improve and develop their personal qualities and skills.

As part of this programme, which runs outside of the regular school curriculum pupils can improve their subject knowledge and work through the differing levels of the various programmes, which are set at certificate, diploma, degree, masters, doctorate levels.

And last week the pupils wore their cap and gowns for the first time to celebrate their first academic milestone with a 'graduation' ceremony in front of invited guests the chairman of the school governors, Paul Deneen and local businesswoman Sabine Kronsbein.

Large group
UNIVERSITY: Reception and class five pupils dressed for the occasion with their awards. (Tindle)

Louise George, headteacher at Walford Nursery and Primary School said it is a wonderful time for the children to celebrate success and added: “The launch of our ‘Walford University’ has been designed to enhance the knowledge, understanding and skills children need to move into the next part of their lives and further into the world of work.

“At Walford, we want every pupil to know that there is a whole world of opportunity beyond our school and to aim high to reach their goals and aspirations.

“We aim to celebrate the successes across all year groups, no matter how small. We aim to provide children with a range of activities to ensure that we are all ‘ready for life’. This is supporting pupils’ mental health and wellbeing and will further develop links between home and school.

“This initiative builds up our cultural capital, the essential knowledge children need to be educated citizens and ultimately encourage every child to become life-long learners.”

There are seven awards for the pupils to work towards including the STEM subjects, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. In addition the subjects of expressive arts, health and well-being, global citizenship and cultural awareness, along with understanding the World, languages and kindness are being studied.