Academy Cycling Schemes Win Awards

The Co-operative Academy has been awarded The Bronze Cycle Mark Award in recognition of all the hard work that the Academy has been doing towards encouraging safe cycling. Since September 2014, students at the Academy have been offered the opportunity to participate in safe cycling training sessions every Friday afternoon as part of the Enrichment programme. The sessions have been led by Andrew Barratt, Sustrans Cycle Officer for Stoke on Trent.  Andrew has played an integral part in helping us to gain this award, and has offered additional training opportunities for staff resulting in us having two trained Cycle Leaders.

The students have participated in travel questionnaires and cycle journey counts, which involve keeping a record of how many cycles are on site for the day, for a certain period of time. As a result of our positive approach towards cycling we were announced as REGIONAL WINNERS OF THE BIG PEDAL.

The Academy has a strong transition programme with our partner primary schools, and as part of the Year 6 transition initiatives the Academy hosted a Transition Cycle Ride on Friday 27th March. Pupils rode their bikes in convoy from their primary schools, learning how to ride safely to The Co-operative Academy to prepare them for safe cycle routes when the pupils will become Year 7 students at the Academy.

As part of the support for the Transition Day, Year 6 pupils from St Mary’s CE and St Nathaniel’s were offered the opportunity to undertake cycle safety classes at their primary. Once pupils were passed as being safe to undertake a cycle ride, we organised for all of the bikes to be checked for roadworthiness and safety. Once at the Academy the pupils participated in activities led by The Co- operative Young Leaders, including cycle football, cycle circles, convoys and learning to ride around large vehicles, such as our new bus on the playground which provide seating and learning areas for students.

Mr White, Assistant Vice-Principal, said "We promote healthy ways to live and one of those is cycling to school. It has been important to us to not only push cycling but to ensure that it is safe - so to see us receiving an award for this is amazing."

Cycling projects continue after Easter with the addition of a new after school Cycle Club allowing students the opportunity to experience cycling along the new cycle pathways of Stoke on Trent.

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