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Project information

Outward Bound - a Challenge Inside

180 students aged 13 - 14 at our inner London comprehensive school will experience the unfamiliar natural outdoors in Wales, with physical and personal challenges along the way. The programme is designed for HGS to achieve our specific aims and outcomes. Staff participate in tasks too.

April 2016 - July 2016

Charity information: Highbury Grove School Foundation

Highbury Grove School Foundation logo
  • Need


    Year 9 (age 13 - 14) is when teenagers are all about themselves and their peers. The students attitudes can become stuck and they can get sucked into repeat behaviour patterns, both in terms of social behaviour and entrenched ideas of what they are and are not 'good' at. A Guardian online article (23/2/16) illustrates the problems of 'Year 9' , which can be magnified by deprivation. We want to try to help them raise their own aspirations and be courageous in thinking about their future.


    The Outward Bound project will challenge them to change their attitudes about themselves, what they can and cannot do. This programme gives them a chance to reassess, they will complete challenges that they do not think they can do initially. This is important in the light of making choices on GCSEs and a sense of their ability to face their own personal situations. The programme will give them opportunities to take initiative and to understand the value of team working.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    take 180 13-14 yr old students (yr 9) on a 4 day residential bespoke Outward Bound course in Wales


    » Physical challenge of extended walk and wilderness survival camping - being outside comfort zone of most city children, and achieve making own meal
    » Teambuilding exercises, games and challenges to bring out initiative and combat negative behaviour, techniques to overcome fears and trust adults

    What success will look like

    Pre and post trip surveys, interviews with a sample of students, student-led assembly to demonstrate their responses. Students self-select to be trip ambassadors for year below

  • Impact


    The students will gain a greater sense of self reliance and self confidence. The programme is designed to challenge negative behaviours and insist on respecting boundaries, and these have been shown to have lasting effect on return to school. (previous experience monitored by Outdoor Education Leader)
    Students will be more confident in approaching their GCSE courses.
    The school will monitor behaviour points, such as sanctions and attendance and attitude to learning assessments.


    Risk- insufficent funds raised - the school funds an amount for this trip and will cover a shortfall
    risk - provider will cease to operate - very low risk as Outward Bound is well recognised and well endowed
    risk - delivery personnel are poor - this is unlikely due to high quality of research and training
    risk - the students choose not to attend - low risk, there is parent and student information and students are encouraged by older role models to attend, NO FINANCIAL BARRIERS AS FREE TO ALL


    A presentation of interviews, individual responses and survey results will be prepared.
    All students complete a pre and post-trip survey questioning their attitudes

    Outward Bound carry out their own survey at end of the course, well tested and research based. (OB Social Impact Report 2014)

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £65,200

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      Amount Heading Description
      £9,100 transport 4 coaches to transport students and staff to Wales
      £52,500 Residential Trip Outward Bound - Aberdovey centre 4 days equipment, staff, food, training, accomodation
      £3,600 Staff costs Pay teaching staff on the trip

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Outward Bound bursary £5,000 Guaranteed
    Highbury Grove School £32,000 Guaranteed
    HGS Foundation fundraising so far including biggive Christmas Challenge £12,490 Guaranteed
  • Background


    Highbury, Islington, Central London. Despite its fashionable reputation, the Index of Multiple Deprivation shows that Islington is the 19th most deprived local authority out of 354 in England (published Nov 2015), the 5th most deprived area in London, and the 3rd in terms of Child Poverty. Islington has the least green space of any London borough and is densely populated, with major roads passing near our school. The experience in Wales will be a huge contrast to local conditions .


    Highbury Grove school has over 50% FSM, so our free trip guarantees inclusion. The boy:girl ratio is 2:1, so a team working project is important for student relations. Overall the school profile is nearly 80% BAME status and Highbury Grove has a high proportion of black Caribbean and Black African students , who are most at danger of disengagement from school (Oxford Uni 2014); Many students have never been to the countryside or even outside London and this will be a real experience

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    HGS Foundation is supporting the school to fund the trip and has chosen Outward Bound Trust to deliver this project because of the many years experience of providing high quality outdoor education trips. The Trust is known for its excellent staff and for the exacting planning of the activities to meet the school's objectives, based on research and proper evaluation. The Outward Bound Trust offers courses in true wilderness locations.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Jane Oakley

    Jane is Leader for Outdoor Education with 12 years experience; she plans programme with staff from Outward Bound, sets groups up with specific aims

'Outward Bound was an amazing experience. The challenge going up the mountain for many hours and not turning back. When I came home I felt strong.'

Suheyla Mohamed Year 10