The Oathall Community College farm team leaders recently attended the ‘School Farms Network Education Alliance Awards’ alongside Head of Farm, John Blackholly.
The team is thrilled to report that the Oathall School Farm collected the national winners prize for Innovation and Enterprise. Judges were full of praise about how the farm has developed creative ways to generate income, helping to sustain the wonderful and unique resource.
Judges were greatly impressed with how the farm is run as a commercial business but at the same time has education at its heart.
Seven student farm leaders were also nominated in another category and we are equally delighted to report they received the national runners up award for Student Leadership. A tremendous achievement and one in which we are justifiably very proud, said Mr Blackholly.
“These students have been outstanding this year, contributing so much and working so hard on behalf of the Farm. They are an absolute credit to their parents and the School Community. They fully deserve this National Award and recognition from the Schools Farm Network, very well done team.”
The School Farm Awards 2018 are designed to celebrate and recognise the achievements of school farms, their schools and students from across the country.
For 2018 there were seven award categories and out of an impressive field of submissions, 17 schools were shortlisted and invited to the ceremony to find out if they had won one of the coveted winners’ plaques.
The standard of submissions across all entries was incredibly high, and the judges were delighted to receive submissions from schools across the UK, including primary schools, secondary schools and colleges, special schools and schools with alternative provision.
The judges enjoyed reading such a wide variety of submissions and finding out more about each unique School Farm: from school farms which use their sites to enable young people to develop their interpersonal, communication and sensory learning, to school farms which run extensive commercial activity, schools which run Open Days for the local community and finding new and innovative ways to work together.
Mr Blackholly explained: “We will continue to develop the Oathall Farm resource and look forward to submitting further entries in future years to recognise the work of other students who contribute so much to the farm’s success. Well done to everyone associated with our wonderful school farm.”