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S4 Mentoring Initiative

Loch Eil tree climbingThis year, S4 pupils were given the opportunity to become mentors for the prospective S1 pupils (current P7s). Although this opportunity was open to all of S4, places were limited. Volunteers applied for the 2-stage interview process: after a practical team-building day held at Strathclyde Park, the pupils were interviewed in groups by Mrs Johnston, Mrs Ervine and Mr Hamilton.

Finally, 13 pupils were selected to go on the week-long training programme during the Easter holidays at Loch Eil Outward Bound Centre, near Fort William.

Loch Eil campingThe week consisted of various practical activities, including the nightline/zip wire and canoeing. The highlight was an overnight expedition: the pupils had to pack and carry their own back packs, containing their tents, sleeping bags, food supplies, stoves and change of clothes. They initially canoed 4km before having to walk 7km to the site where they were to set up camp. Next day, there was a 4km hike back to the centre, where they had to clean all their gear and check that nothing had been lost!

Loch Eil canoeingIncorporated into the week were two 1-hour sessions discussing bullying, which prepared the pupils to deal with possible scenarios, and confidentiality, to train the pupils in dealing with their future mentees.

The pupils will have a further training day, again at Strathclyde Park, followed by an overnight stay at Moffat Outward Bound Centre, where they will have a chance to be involved in working with P7 groups.