Young Ambassadors from Corby come up with grand designs for their school grounds

The Young Ambassadors visiting Corby mayor Peter McEwan

The Young Ambassadors visiting Corby mayor Peter McEwan

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Pupils from Oakley Vale Primary School in Corby have been praised for plans to improve their school grounds.

The students are the school’s new recruits to the Inspiring Neighbourhoods Little Ambassador project, which is part of their Inspiring Children Programme for schools.

The Young Ambassadors

The Young Ambassadors

They had to apply to become a Little Ambassador and nine students from Year 5 were selected before starting the first stage of the programme to identify improvements to the school grounds.

The aim was to produce an achievable plan that the students could gain support to implement and they also worked on aspirational design where they could let their imaginations run wild.

They attended a series of workshops to help them design their plans and the finished drawings were shown to school leaders and then to Corby mayor Peter McEwan.

Cllr McEwan said he was very impressed with the enthusiasm and vision of the students and the youngsters have a further invitation to meet the deputy mayor Julie Riley.

The Little Ambassadors will clear the outside area, paint the surrounds of the existing flower-beds in house colours and encourage more wildlife to the garden.

They also want to paint an existing archway and have inspirational quotes on signs in the area.

Principal Emma Goodwin said: “This is a fantastic long-term project that has taught our students many valuable skills including design and presentation.

“Meeting the mayor and deputy mayoress was a huge thrill and we are looking forward to continuing our plans this year and making the most of our outside space so that all of our students and staff can enjoy it.

“The students have worked really hard on this project and their efforts will make a real difference to everyone at Oakley Vale Primary School.”

The first wave of the project has taken six weeks with the next stage being to plan timelines, build a 3D model and recruit volunteers to help make their project a reality, in collaboration with Inspiring Neighbourhoods Community Interest Company.

Brenda Easton from Inspiring Neighbourhoods CIC said the children worked as a team, listened to each other and made the best decision for the school.

Their confidence grew, particularly when presenting their plan and expressing themselves.

Funding for the first wave of the project came from Cllr Mary Butcher through the empowering councillors fund from Northamptonshire County Council.

She said: “Oakley Vale is an extremely diverse area.

“The students have worked extremely well together and they have a great understanding of the environment through this.

“It brings back the importance of looking after the environment allowing children to appreciate what they have around them.

“I am very impressed with their plans they have done a tremendous job and we still have a lot more to do.”

The Little Ambassadors are Joanne Kadavan, Scarlett Cunningham, Caitlin Eastwood, Denzel Dhlodhlo, Sophie Inglis, Julia Wasilewska, Evelyn Chapman, Victoria Tysoe and Amalie Lines.