11 January 2018

Outward Bound leaders visit ATLP to celebrate 20 years of collaboration

Outstanding schools from the Arthur Terry Learning Partnership (ATLP) welcomed senior leaders from the Outward Bound Trust yesterday (10 January) to celebrate 20 years of partnership working.

Nick Barrett (CEO Outward Bound Trust) and Kevin Long (Outward Bound Education Partnerships – Midlands) visited the Arthur Terry Learning Partnership at Mere Green and Arthur Terry schools.

Nick and Kevin met a range of students, 6th form mentors and staff to gain a holistic understanding of the Outward Bound journey within the ATLP. They also met with senior school leaders at Mere Green and Arthur Terry and Richard Gill (CEO ATLP) and discussed contemporary education issues and how the relationship can continue to develop over the forthcoming years.

Arthur Terry School was presented with a special award for the strength of the continued relationship. The Arthur Terry School and The Outward Bound Trust have enjoyed a special relationship since the 1970s with assistant headteacher Sue Bailey initiating and subsequently leading many trips with different purposes over the years. Arthur Terry has also hosted school experience days for instructors as part of their continued professional development and presented as keynote speakers at conferences in Scotland and Birmingham. The student expedition that has endured to today and has become a cornerstone to the transition programme from primary to secondary schools is the Year 7 transition trip to Outward Bound Aberdovey. The trip traditionally runs in the first week in December, ensuring that students get to meet new staff and other students over the weekend in the first term of their secondary school experience.

Mike Simmons, deputy director of the Arthur Terry National Teaching School (ATNTS) has led the trip in recent years and the school has consistently taken upwards of 150 students for the experience who have been accompanied by a range of teaching staff, support staff and most recently 6th form mentors and associate teachers <read here>

The school’s most recent trip <watch the video here> to Outward Bound, Aberdovey, meant that Arthur Terry had visited for 20 years in succession and therefore sharing the experience with over 2500 students and hundreds of staff members.

Mike Simmons, Arthur Terry’s Outward Bound trip leader since 2011, said:

We believe the Outward Bound trips at Arthur Terry are a wonderful equalizer for the students to experience. Intelligence, affluence and academic prowess fall into insignificance when crossing the grot pot, jumping off the jetty or collaboratively working towards a shared goal as part of a team. What does happen is that students learn. They learn without really realising it. They learn about themselves and what they can challenge themselves to do and they learn that they can achieve when taking autonomy for their actions.”

Eleanor Good, senior sixth form mentor, Arthur Terry School, said:

I have been involved in 6th form mentoring programme for two years and have gained a lot from all aspects of the experience. It has helped be to develop my leadership and communication skills as well as giving me an opportunity to embark on more Outward Bound excursions which I thoroughly enjoy. I also believe it has benefited a larger community as it has helped bridge the gap between younger and older students, which help with the integration process.”