It is a pioneering school or a college which uses, or is working towards using, farming, food production and the natural environment topics within its curriculum. It also meets the criteria outlined below over a five year period working directly with our LEAF Education Specialists.
We have enhanced and curriculum-appropriate criteria for each of our three types of LEAF Demonstration Schools or Colleges. The school is at the forefront of creating an engaging curriculum and learning environment that seeks opportunities to deepen their pupils’ and students’ experiences and knowledge through balanced and informed insight into food production, farming and the natural environment.
Members of the LEAF Education Specialists Team are seeking schools in their region as an example of excellence in using food, farming and the natural environment as a core element of the school curriculum.
Being a LEAF Demonstration School will not involve completion of lots of paperwork or the undertaking of extra tasks. We want to shine a light on and champion good practice your school is already showing and to help you to build on that throughout a sustained period of activity.
Working together we will have you to develop your school along your journey to Demonstration School status.
Our LEAF Education Specialists Team are all qualified teachers and lecturers and therefore will support your school, whilst not adding to work load but seeking to simplify and compliment plans to embed an ethos in the school around food, farming and the natural environment.
LEAF will work with you to help you to meet the requirements and we will be available to answer any questions you might have. There may be references in the criteria that you do not yet fully understand (e.g. Farmer Time and Countryside Classroom) but we will explain these fully. We see this as an evolving engagement in the area of food and farming which is why the criteria are presented as a five-year commitment, developing from a Bronze to a Gold LEAF Education Demonstration School.
Furthermore, as part of the journey we will work together to develop Action Research bespoke to your school/college setting, that will showcase the benefits that this type of approach can have for your pupils/students.
There is much research evidence available to demonstrate the positive impact of children’s involvement with outdoor learning. Research papers can be signposted if required.
Once you are accepted as a LEAF Education Demonstration School, we will work with you to promote your activities in a way that you consider most appropriate. This might include sharing information/photos/quotes relating to your events and activities. With your permission, we will publish highlights in our e-newsletters and annual reports, thereby demonstrating your school’s achievements. Publication by social media will be in line with your school’s policy which must be made available to us.
We will also champion your work with us to wider organisations within the Farming and Food sectors. There might be opportunities to work with wider organisations and our other Demonstration Schools as a benefit to being a LEAF Education Demonstration School and we would hope that this is seen as a mutually beneficial opportunity.
From 2023, we will also look to bring our Demonstration School Network together to share best practice and learn from one another. Equally, it is a chance to shine a spotlight on your school/college and encourage others to follow in your footsteps.