It is now several years since the Rotary Leadership and Management programme was developed in conjunction with the Institute of Leadership and Management. The programme, which contains 14 hours of guided learning and is centred around the planning and delivery of a project, resulting in a Level 2 award, is fully approved by the Institute.
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Since its inception, nearly 200 young people have graduated for an award which can be delivered by a teacher, youth leader or suitably experienced Rotarian.
One of the programmes completed last year was at the Bourne End Academy in Buckinghamshire. Graduate Bailey Burdock said he took the course because he felt the qualification would accelerate his future career. He said: “I thoroughly enjoyed working with my team to create and contrast ideas and plans for our final assessment.
“I enjoyed how as a group we helped broaden our plans and created a close working environment with each other, working to the best of our abilities.
“The best part was seeing the effect our event at a local care home had on our guests and feeling the sense of achievement for what we had done.
“I found it an amazing opportunity to learn more about myself and how to work with others and I’m so grateful I was presented with this opportunity.”
I enjoyed how as a group we helped broaden our plans and created a close working environment with each other, working to the best of our abilities.”
During the last 12 months, the programme has had relevance to those with lower academic ability and Special Educational Needs. These students have not always been able to achieve the Level 2 award so in 2022, Judi Strain prepared a Level 1 programme called ‘Communication and Teamwork’ which gained approval from the Institute of Leadership and Management.
Teacher Rachel Adams delivered the programmes at Pitcheroak School in Redditch. She said: “Pitcheroak began our relationship with Rotary with the idea that the Leadership and Management programme would support our Special Educational Needs or Disability (SEND) young people to develop transferable skills for their futures.
“Post-Covid, we opened the Flexible Learning Centre, a setting focused on developing independence, life skills and preparing students for their next steps to college, apprenticeships, or employment.
“The Leadership and Management programme inspired young people to develop their own projects and fostered all of the skills they need for the future.”
Among the projects the youngsters worked on was to improve the gardens at a local care home and deliver sensory play for SEND reception children.
During the current academic year, the programme is now running in seven centres in five different districts in Rotary Great Britain & Ireland, with discussions ongoing with two more possible centres.
The exciting addition of the Level 1 ‘Communication and Teamwork’ programme means that Rotary has the opportunity to reach a new group of students, providing them with one of the few externally approved qualifications they may achieve.