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School Offers Local Children a Chance to Shine

Monday, 08 November 2010

Forty two pupils from five local primary schools attended the opening session of the second running of the annual 'SHINE: Serious Fun on Saturdays' programme at Bolton School.  The scheme is run in partnership with the SHINE charitable trust and aims to encourage Year 5 pupils (both boys and girls) to participate in fun, educational sessions run by Bolton School staff on Saturday mornings each week between November and February (excluding school holidays).  It is aimed at motivated and able pupils who have shown a high level of academic engagement or are perhaps of limited means and who would benefit from furthering their educational development by attending these inspiring sessions. The activities are firmly focused on pupil enjoyment and participation and encompass a wide variety of curriculum areas such as Maths, History and the sciences, as well as other more unusual offerings such as Russian, Japanese and Martial Arts. This year the children will also enjoy two field trips: one to Rivington Pike to experience some Geography and one to the National Space Centre in Leicester.   

One pupil, Jessica Howie, aged 10 of Beaumont School, was delighted with the first session and said: "I am really excited about the SHINE project.  When I looked at the list of things we will be doing, they were all new and exciting and not the sort of things we normally do in school.  I am really looking forward to the Geography trip."  Her classmate Samuel Dawson, aged 9, added: "I like Science and I really enjoyed the Chemistry class and the work with Bunsen burners.  We burnt lots of things - coal, leaves, sugar, but magnesium was the best!" 

Bolton School's Director of Admissions Mr James Rich said: "We are delighted to be running the SHINE initiative again.  The sessions provide a wonderful opportunity for young, bright children to expand their learning beyond the normal confines of the curriculum and to make use of our facilities and expertise.  At the same time, I know our teachers also enjoy themselves as they watch these Year 5 pupils develop over the course of the programme.  The opening day has been a great success, enjoyed both by the children and by our Sixth Formers, who have provided excellent assistance and help throughout the morning as mentors."

Fifty per cent of the funding for the project has come from the SHINE educational charity and Bolton School provides the other half of the funding.  All sessions are free for the children participating. Although the cash injection from SHINE will cease after the initial three years, the intention is to continue to run the scheme into the future through school funding alone.

The scheme will culminate with a graduation dinner held in School in February 2011 at which participating pupils, their parents and their teachers celebrate the children's success.

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Local Year 5 pupils take part in SHINE

SHINE encourages local Year 5 state school pupils to participate in fun, educational sessions run by Bolton School staff on Saturday mornings

Sixth Formers help out with the activities

Sixth Formers help out with the activities which encompass a wide variety of curriculum areas

Children enjoy a Chemistry session

Children enjoy a Chemistry session