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2000 young people to virtually graduate from Sheffield’s Children’s University
This summer over 2000 children and young people from 64 schools across the city will take part in the first ever Sheffield Children’s University virtual ceremony. The graduation ceremonies are an opportunity to celebrate young people who have taken part in over 100 hours of learning activity in their own time.
The virtual ceremony experience will include three parts; a specially designed ‘Create your own Children’s University ceremony’ home learning challenge to take part in, a pre-recorded award ceremony video for them to watch and a graduation hat toss, to be filmed at home and shared on the Children’s University’s online channels.
The home learning challenge encourages young people to invite their families to celebrate with them, make special refreshments to enjoy, create their own stage, and make their mortarboard to throw.
The ceremony video includes speeches from David Walliams, the Lord Mayor Cllr Tony Downing, HM Lord Lieutenant of South Yorkshire Andrew Coombe, and Cathy Sinclair, co-director of student recruitment and admissions at Hallam University. It also includes a special recorded performances from Rainbow Forge Primary Academy and Sheffield Music Hub, a poem written especially for the occasion and a science experiment too.
Families will receive an invitation letter to the virtual ceremonies before the end of the school term and can take part over the summer holidays.
Councillor Abtisam Mohammed, Cabinet Member for Education and Skills at Sheffield City Council said: “Congratulations to all these young people, what a fantastic achievement in particularly difficult circumstances. I hope you all enjoy your celebrations and have a wonderful day.”
Jenny Morris’s son Ben will be graduating this summer. Jenny said: “Ben has been collecting credits for the Children’s University for a few years, mainly through his karate lessons. As he’s continued these lessons at home through lockdown he will be grading for his black belt in August, which we’re really proud of. It’s brilliant that he gets extra recognition for taking part in learning outside of school and it encourages him to work really hard.
“As Ben’s in Y6 he’s really missed out on a lot in the last months of primary but being able to be part of the virtual graduation ceremony is a real boost for him, he really enjoyed it and the activities designed to go along with it made it feel special.”
Emma Brown is 11 and has been taking part in Children’s University for around 6 years. Her mum Claire said: “This year is the end of primary school for Emma so the graduation ceremony marks the hundreds of hours of extra-curricular activities she has participated in during her primary years. It’s sad to be missing out on a live graduation ceremony but we are looking forward to the online graduation so her achievements will still be celebrated.”
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The coronavirus pandemic has upended the lives of everyone in our city, and no more so than the lives of our children and young people. But we as a council, have stepped up to do the best by our children and make sure that in our covid-19 response we have put them first.