Staff and children at Eastwood Grange School in Ashover, Derbyshire, are celebrating after the school won an "Investing in Children" award.
"Investing in Children" is awarded to organisations working with young children who recognise and allow children to have a strong voice in the services they use.
Eastwood Grange School has embraced this, recognising that young children have the capacity to make personal choices, to have control, and can shape their learning.
To receive the award, Eastwood Grange had to demonstrate that its "dialogue with young people led to change". During their inspection, the organisation "Investing in Children" said it was impressed with the strength of the student voice at the school and the way this helped bring about positive changes.
"Pupil Voice" meetings are a vital tool in ensuring that all pupils at Eastwood Grange are represented and have their views taken on board.
As part of "Pupil Voice", a mentor visits each class every week to see if pupils are happy and have any comments. During a visit by "Investing in Children", a pupil said "I tell Carl what I want, I've asked for bean bags which we got, I put down about having a big playground which we are getting". Indeed, as a result of feedback, the school is in the process of developing a new school playground.
Eastwood Grange has put in place other initiatives which encourage pupils to work hard and which reward them for their efforts. The school's "Worth a Mention" award recognises children who have completed "outstanding" work. In its evaluation report, "Investing in Children" discussed the positive relationships between staff and pupils. A pupil said "all of the staff here are so kind and lovely".
At its recent Ofsted inspection, the school was hailed as "good" right across the board. Tony Armstrong, the school's principal, also won the Chief Executive's top award for Leadership at our internal awards ceremony which celebrates excellence across sites.
Mr Armstrong said: "I am so pleased that we have received the 'Investing in Children' award. At Eastwood Grange, we believe that a strong student voice is the key to establishing an excellent learning and teaching environment, so we are very proud of this latest success. It has been an excellent year so far, and I am sure we will continue to have many more successes in the coming months."
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