Former head teacher appointed as Education Coordinator

The former head of Newquay Junior School, has been appointed to run The Wave Project’s new Beach School education programme.

Andrew Reep is an active member St Agnes Surf Lifesaving Club as well as experienced teacher. He will oversee the scheme to help 240 Cornish pupils reach their potential.

He said: “I am delighted to be heading up the Beach School programme here at The Wave Project and am very much looking forward to building on the fantastic success that the programme is having throughout Cornwall. The charity has inspired and engaged hundreds of young people and helped to improve their education. I am passionate about working to ensure that all young people can engage positively with learning and fulfil their potential, and believe that learning outdoors within the beach and surf environment can truly inspire and motivate pupils, particularly those who find engaging with mainstream school more challenging.”

The Wave Project received £100,000 grant from Comic Relief to run the Beach School project for 240 Cornish children who are at risk of not engaging in school. The award-winning Cornish charity has successfully been running the programme across the county throughout the past year, and has worked with six primary and secondary schools in the 2016-17 term.

Pupils in years 9 and 5 spent one day a week doing their lessons on the beach, improving their knowledge of subjects such as geography, science and maths – with a bit of surfing thrown in. The participating schools were Penair School in Truro, Pool Academy, Brannel School in St Stephen, Bodmin College, Berrycoombe Primary School in Bodmin, Treviglas College in Newquay.

Lessons are delivered on the beach, in school time, and help to re-ignite pupils’ interest in core subjects such as English, geography and science. The new project will target 240 children who are not engaging in lessons or refusing to go to school over the next two years.

Wave Project chief executive Joe Taylor said: “This is a really exciting opportunity that will benefit 160 children in Cornwall who are currently not engaging with school. We found last year that by delivering lessons on the beach rather than a classroom environment, children became more engaged and interested in their subjects. It’s fantastic that we have benefited from this generous funding from the Comic Relief, which will enable us to reach 10 times as many children as last year.”

Cornwall-based educational psychologist Dr Wendy Thomas, who is a trustee of the Wave Project, said this was a big opportunity for young people to improve their resilience and emotional wellbeing.
Dr Thomas said: “I am really excited about the prospect of more young people in Cornwall accessing learning in the outdoor environment. “Such opportunities help promote fitness, contribute to enhanced emotional wellbeing and support positive social interaction through team activities. A brilliant opportunity to focus on building the resilience of young people in Cornwall.”

Schools in Cornwall that would like to take part in the project should send an expression of interest via email to andrewr@waveproject.co.uk