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Locked down learners lend a helping hand to charity

Lockdown means schoolchildren across the country are not getting out and about as much as they are used to but Springwood High pupils are certainly not missing out on their daily exercise after the school set up an inter-year group fitness challenge to raise money for local charities. 

Heads of year of the six groups involved are also taking part, including Head of Year 13 Jess Cuss who has challenged herself to run 100km during lockdown. Head teacher Andy Johnson is hoping that the incentive to take regular exercise will keep them in good mental health as well as physically sharp in such a challenging time. 

Pupils in Year 7, including Charlie Barnes, are raising funds for local homelessness charity the Purfleet Trust, Year 8 are supporting the RSPCA, and Year 9 has chosen the Queen Elizabeth Hospital COVID-19 support fund. 

For their good cause, Year 10 pupils have picked Hearing Dogs for Deaf People, Year 11 is also supporting the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, and sixth formers will be raising funds for the Teenage Cancer Trust. 

So far hundreds of pounds have been raised for these charities with the winning year group being named after the February half term.

“Lockdown is a strange time for everyone, especially in winter, so we wanted to come up with an imaginative, positive-thinking way to inspire the pupils and keep them motivated, whilst also doing some good,” said Mr Johnson, who is the executive headteacher of West Norfolk Academies Trust.

“This challenge maintains a spirit of school community and friendly rivalry when we’re all apart, as well as ensuring that we fulfil our responsibility to look after students’ physical development as well as academic.

“The fact it’s for charity also means that they realise that everyone is going through a difficult time at the moment, and even when you’re stuck at home, there are still ways you can help lend others a helping hand, even if you can’t get far out of the house to do it.” 

All the fundraising pages can be viewed here: