Duke of Edinburgh's Award Scheme
Bedford School is an Independent Operating Authority and we offer the opportunity for students to complete their Bronze, Silver and/or Gold Awards. Boys can enter at any level as long as they are the minimum age but preference at Silver and Gold is given to boys who have completed previous levels. Numbers are limited so places at Bronze level are awarded on a first-come, first served basis. Full details of the award can be found at www.dofe.org
In a busy school like Bedford, there are plenty of activities on offer that can count towards the Skill, Volunteering and Physical Activity sections of the Award. These have to be undertaken as a weekly commitment over a timescale of 3 – 12 months depending on level of Award. Candidates are also free to choose activities that take place out of school. For example, a potential medic might volunteer at a local hospice.
The expedition section is undoubtedly the most exciting and challenging part of the Award. It is one of the few opportunities that students get to be completely self reliant. As a group, they have responsibility for planning their own adventure and ensuring that they can be self sufficient for the duration of the expedition.
At Bronze level and for new entrants, the Autumn term is spent learning basic expedition skills such as map reading, cooking and first aid. Expeditions are carried out in groups of 5 – 7 candidates and boys choose their own groups. The duration of the expedition and the distance walked depends on the level of the award and ranges from 25km in 2 days to 80km in 4 days. Groups choose an aim for their expedition and plan their own routes. As well as the traditional walking venutres, candidates can choose to cycle or canoe their Silver or Gold expedition.
Duke of Edinburgh’s Award will give the candidate:
- A framework to ensure that he commits to a variety of activities he may not otherwise have tried
- Recognition for activities he may already do in or out of school
- A better ability to work as part of a team and think his their feet
- Better planning and problem solving skills
- The opportunity to spend time hiking, camping and cooking independently with a group of friends.
- A chance to see some of the most beautiful wild country areas of the UK
- A huge sense of achievement from overcoming physical and mental challenges
Comments from D of E participants:
“We all gained invaluable experience and become bonded together like never before. An expedition like this has given us something a classroom definitely cannot offer and proud, we are, to have completed it.” Shun Sasaki, Silver Candidate
“The expedition was very enjoyable. We worked together as team well and the route was scenic too. Some of the climbs were challenging but this made the experience all the more enjoyable!” Tarun Jacob, Silver Assessed Expedition
“I’d have to say that the expedition's been a highlight of my whole year and I look forward to doing it all again next time! “ Chris Davey, Bronze Assessed expedition
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