Belmont Academy is a secondary school in South Ayrshire with approximately 1250 young people on the school roll, around 23% of young people living in SIMD 1-3. The school upholds a high percentage of young people who are in positive and sustained destinations beyond Belmont and by making use of the SCQF Framework, we have a suite of interventions to meet the needs and interests of learners with accreditation in a wide range of courses, units and skill-based experiences beyond the traditional classroom offer.
To meet the needs of our learners, we have reflected upon and refreshed our curriculum and utilised the SCQF Framework and database to investigate alternative pathways for our young people. Curriculum development and pathway progression has been extended at Belmont Academy in recent years to include Media Studies, Level 5 & 6 Sports Leader, Level 5 NPA Sport and Recreation, Dance, National 5 Music Technology, Travel & Tourism, Games Development, Cyber Security, NPA Music Performing, NPA Photography, Level 4 People and Society, Level 4 & 5 Personal Finance, Level 5 Mental Health Award, Higher Leadership and Prince’s Trust Achieve units. Our curriculum offer now includes more SCQF Level 4, 5, 6 and 7 options and pathways for young people, with even more in planning for introduction in 23-24 and 24-25. Sixty-three young people are attending a school-college partnership course at Ayrshire College this session as part of their senior phase timetable and a larger number have applications in process for session 23-24.
Our school has strong partnerships with Ayrshire College and Developing the Young Workforce Ayrshire. We have a sustained and ongoing partnership working with a local construction company and have recently formed a partnership with a local manufacturing company to raise awareness of pathways into Trades, which will provide an additional pathway for young people to be successful in careers in the Ayrshire Growth Deal; a massive boost to the local economy and job market.
Our SCQF Pupil Ambassadors designed and created an information stand to raise awareness of SCQF at all parents’ evenings and whole school events. They are currently planning a recruitment selection process to grow the number of pupil Ambassadors in Belmont Academy to provide sustainability for the SCQF team. As a school, we are investigating opportunities to formally recognise them for their pupil leadership and volunteering.
Personal Support for all classes has been used over the past two years to deliver the SCQF training through our Theme of the Week series ‘Bee Work Ready’ which utilises SCQF and Skills Development Scotland resources. This has been a valuable tool in course choice decision making for S2-S6 pupils. An SCQF presentation was part of our Options and Pathways Information Event for parents and young pupils prior to option choices, which raised awareness and increased knowledge of the SCQF levels to support their child in decision making.
Our goals for SCQF in session 23-24 include:
“We have enjoyed being part of the SCQF Pupil Ambassador group. We have presented at parents’ evenings and shared how the Framework helps everyone understand levels of qualifications. We would like to build up our confidence talking to large groups next session and present SCQF information at an assembly.”
“In my time at Belmont Academy, I have been part of new classes that have been recently added to the curriculum. I have achieved Level 5 and 6 Dance Leader with Active Schools and Level 5 Childcare with Ayrshire College. Doing these courses helped me decide the career path I wanted to go down - sport and dance. I enjoy teaching it to younger kids. As well as achieving these qualifications I have gained many skills such as time keeping, communication, teamwork and creativity. I also participated in the DYW Nail Bar experience where we learned how to shape and paint nails, create nail art designs and practise on each other. I have also completed Level 5 Mental Health Award. My experiences at Belmont Academy have really helped me decide the career path I want to pursue and I loved having regular work experience in a cluster primary school.”
Belmont Academy is currently an SCQF Silver Ambassador school.
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