An innovative partnership launched in Peterhead last year is going from strength to strength.
The PeterDeen programme involves two north-east football clubs, Peterhead Academy, a local sailing club, local business and other partners.
It aims to offer different educational opportunities to the area’s young people.
The scheme has delivered a 50 per cent increase in attendance rates among those who are participating.
The alternative curriculum includes coaching sessions and the opportunity to focus on skills for life and work as well as continuing their studies on core subjects such as English and Maths.
To date, 18 S3 pupils have taken part in the scholarship programme to develop their skills for learning, life and work in a way they might not otherwise achieve.
Partners and teachers are already seeing how well the programme is working and a celebration of scholars’ achievements so far is taking place at the school this week.
They received certificates recognising their participation in a range of practical, accredited courses across school, sport and business.
Councillor Gillian Owen, Chair of Aberdeenshire Council’s Education and Children’s Services Committee commented: “It is heartening to hear stories of progression, hard work and patience, and we hope the programme will continue for years to come.”
Led by Aberdeenshire Council, the PeterDeen scholarship has been developed in partnership with Aberdeen FC Community Trust, Peterhead Football Club and Peterhead-based Score Group plc as well as third sector providers.
Vice-Chair Councillor Mark Findlater added: “We are also very grateful to all of our partners in this joined up approach to delivering learning as well as life experience opportunities. As the saying goes, it takes a village to raise a child and this is a great example of how reaching out to our communities can make a real difference to a young person’s future.”
The project aims to deliver a curriculum through which students will be encouraged to celebrate their own achievements and develop as independent, responsible and creative young people with a lifelong interest in learning and self-development.