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Academy awarded ‘Champion School Status’

St Margaret’s Church of England Academy (SMA) is celebrating after being honoured with Champion School status by National Citizen Service (NCS).

The Aigburth-based academy is now one of the top five schools, out of 160 across Merseyside and Cheshire, to have a large influx of students enrolling in the national programme.

Over 70 Year 11 students from SMA have signed up this year, almost doubling last year’s intake.

NCS is a two or four week programme for 16 and 17-year-olds which takes place during school holidays. The programme involves teenagers meeting other local young people from a range of backgrounds, living independently, and developing new skills whilst learning more about their communities and how they can make a difference through social action projects.

Simon Valentine, part of the NCS North West team, said: “We have been working with St Margaret’s Academy for a number of years now and the uptake from students continues to increase time and time again, thanks to the positive feedback and support we receive from teachers and NCS graduates.

“The programme ultimately brings together people from different backgrounds and helps them develop greater confidence, self-awareness and responsibility. It encourages personal and social development by working on skills like leadership, teamwork and communication.

“For its continued commitment, I am delighted to award SMA with the much deserved Champion School status.”

Neil Harrison, head of Year 11 at SMA, said: “National Citizen Service is a fantastic way for the year group to obtain new skills, work with communities and also experience living away from home which can often be daunting.

“Once our students find out all the fun things they get to do, they don’t need much encouragement to sign-up!”

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About Author: Alan Birkett