Emergency service work helps boost pupils’ skills

Students and staff from Whitley Bay High School using the fire hoses during their experience day at Tynemouth Fire Station.

Students and staff from Whitley Bay High School using the fire hoses during their experience day at Tynemouth Fire Station.

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Pupils got hot under the collar as they learned more about the emergency services.

A total of nine Year 11 students at Whitley Bay High School completed a 12-week community engagement programme in partnership with North Tyneside Council, Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service, and Northumbria Police.

The programme, helping the youngsters understand the emergency services and impact within the local community, also helped the pupils develop key skills needed for their GCSE studies.

During the programme the students engaged in three focused activities.

The first was the Phoenix Project in conjunction with the Tyne and Wear Fire Service, which helped develop personal attributes including contributing to a team, exploring physical and mental limits and raised awareness about the role. The second focused on mock interviews with either the fire service or police as students attended two interview workshops.

And the third activity was on anti-social behaviour in the borough, with students using questionnaires to get the thoughts from local residents on the issue, presenting a 50-page document to Coun Paul Mason.

Whitley Bay High teacher David Lee said: “The creation of the portfolio is a testament to the hard work of all nine students.

“The programme allowed the students to increase their self-esteem, the practical activities including the visit to the fire station and the mock interview were crucial in developing teamwork and personal communication skills.

“We want all our students to have a good skills set to partner a good set of GCSE results that enables them to secure a potential sixth form, college or apprenticeship place and this type of programme allows our students to enjoy success in a different learning environment.”