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Duke of Edinburgh

We are delighted to be able to offer the Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) Bronze award here at Aylestone.

The DofE is non-competitive and open to all young people – it is about setting personal challenges and pushing personal boundaries. Through their DofE, pupils will make friends and memories and build traits like confidence, resilience and self-esteem, which can benefit mental health. They will gain skills and attributes for work and life, like problem-solving, team-work and self-motivation and, once completed, they will achieve an Award that is recognised by top employers and can help them stand out when applying for university or jobs.

There are three different award levels: Bronze, Silver and Gold. In Year 9, pupils will have the opportunity to complete their Bronze award. Students will have the opportunity to complete Silver and Gold in further education or with a recognised local group.

The DofE Certificate of Achievement:
The Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) Award consists of four parts that must be completed at all levels to gain the full award. You may also gain sectional certificates on the completion of each section. The sections are shared throughout each level and are;

  • Volunteering
  • Skill
  • Physical
  • Expedition

Participants will select an activity from each of the three categories - Skill, Volunteering and Physical. Activities for each section take a minimum of one hour a week over a set period of time so they can fit around studying, hobbies and social lives. We will provide guidance and support to your child, where they can either choose to continue an activity they already do or discover something completely new.

Our focus is to support your child to complete their Skills, Volunteering and Physical sections of their Bronze Award and, as such, receive a DofE Certificate of Achievement – a formal recognition by the DofE of their efforts at this extraordinary time.

The completion of the Expedition, in addition to the Skill, Volunteering and Physical sections will lead to the achievement of the Bronze Award.

The Expedition section involves working as part of a small team to plan a two-day walking and 1-night camping trip. Ahead of this, they will take part in training in basic Expedition principles and introduce them to Expedition equipment. All pupils will have to purchase a certain amount of kit leading up to the expedition, a kit list is available on the DofE page on our website. Participants will only be able to do their Expedition if they attend the organised training and complete the Skill, Volunteering and Physical sections prior.

The Duke of Edinburgh Award has a vast number of benefits for the young people taking part. A small number of these include; developing self-confidence and self-reliance; gaining a sense of achievement and a sense of responsibility; discovering new skills, interests and talents and developing leadership skills and abilities. They can also discover exciting opportunities; make new friends; experience teamwork, problem-solving and decision-making; increase their motivation; enhance their self-esteem and develop their communication skills. They will also, of course, have fun!

Attendance at the training sessions is compulsory for students to be allowed on school expeditions - if any training sessions are missed, students will not be able to go. It is very important that pupils and their parents/carers check that they will be able to attend each week. If an individual has holidays/ trips/ visits that will prevent them from taking part, then it is not the right time to join. Paid fees are non-refundable and if you miss any sessions you will not be allowed on the school expedition, whatever the reason.

The highest standards of co-operation and self-discipline will be needed both during the training sessions and on expeditions. The students place on an expedition will depend on behaviour and attitude during training sessions.

There will be three practice walks - the third walk is with full kit.

Participants will complete one practice and one assessed expedition. The expedition will involve two days of walking with an overnight camp.

To take part in the assessed expedition, participants need to complete the other three sections of the award.

Two of the remaining three sections of the award must last for 3 months, the other for 6 months. You may decide which section you spend the most time on. All activities must be completed in your own time (lunchtimes/ after school/weekends) and the record book must be signed by a suitable adult (usually a teacher/ coach).

The school has a small amount of equipment for hire, but individuals often provide their own.

Joining the Scheme:
From September 2023, the total cost to enrol on the DofE award is £120 per person. This includes enrolment fee, Duke of Edinburgh t-shirts, training, tents, cooking equipment, maps, compasses and much more. In order to join the award scheme, participants will be required to pay the enrolment fee of £40 which includes a starter pack (must be kept safe), a t-shirt and admin fee. There will then be two more instalments of £40 in January and April.  This money is non-refundable.

If your child is interested in joining the DofE, please email to register their interest and our DofE leader will get back to you with information on how to join.

All stages of the award need to be completed by the individuals 25th birthday. Pupils may join the Bronze award in Year 9 (but must be 14 years and 6 months before the Bronze award can be completed).

Duke of Edinburgh website:
More information can be found on the Duke of Edinburgh official website –
DofE - The Duke of Edinburgh's Award