Top award for Thames Water's education team

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Top award for Thames Water’s education team

Thames Water’s education team has scooped a coveted award for its work with school pupils outside the classroom.

The team was given the Learning Outside the Classroom (LOtC) Quality badge for the education centres at Didcot, Hogsmill, Maple Lodge, Slough, Deephams and Long Reach sewage works.

It comes after a busy period for the team, which has hosted several visits to each of the sites since the academic year started in September 2018.

Paul Hampton, from Thames Water’s education team, said: “We’re delighted our six sites are endorsed as centres of Excellence for Outdoor Learning for young people by LoTC.

“They have a solid reputation among schools and teachers for promoting great opportunities for young people to explore beyond the walls of their classrooms, enabling them to enhance their learning within the curriculum.

“We’re proud to be associated with and accredited by LoTC for the work we’re doing to widen understanding and knowledge of what Thames Water does and how we do it.”

The LOtC Quality Badge is a national award which combines the essential elements of learning and safety into an easily recognisable and trusted accreditation. The award is issued by the Council for Learning Outside the Classroom, which is a registered charity which champions learning outdoors.

Ironically, one such group which benefited from the centres late last year was not school pupils but school teachers, with 15 attending a special eco-school training day at Long Reach.

Alongside a tour of the works, the teachers also learnt how to gain the Eco-Schools Green Flag Award for their school, which gives students and teachers the opportunity to work on and improve aspects of their environment by focusing on up to five different topics from a list of 10, which can include water and waste.

Reading University students also visited Long Reach late last year.

They were using the sewage works as a case study and were particularly interested in environmental topics, ranging from effluent consent parameters to the management of wildlife on the site. 

As part of the company’s record £11.7 billion business plan for 2020-25, Thames Water has announced an ambitious target to reach every school age child in its region. Its comprehensive education programme includes hosting on-site school visits and giving talks in classrooms, supported by a wealth of online resources, designed to enhance teaching and learning for primary and secondary schools

For more information, and to arrange a free school trip, visit thameswater.co.uk/schooltrips