There are a large number of pupils involved in the DOE scheme in Dalriada. Pupils begin at Direct Level Entry Silver Award towards the end of Year 11 when the majority of pupils will have reached their 15th birthday. Pupils are required to orgainize and complete the Volunteering, Physical and Skills sections of the award.
Pupils are taught the required skills to navigate and camp in the mountains in weekly after school classes in preparation for the Expedition section of the Award. They undertake 2 practice expedition hikes in Year 12-usually one in September in the Antrim Hills and one in the Easter holidays in the Mournes Mountains. The assessed hike takes place after the GCSE exams in either June or August.
We can usually accommodate 50 pupils at Silver Level for the Expedition Section. In the case that we are oversubscribed we have set up a partnership with the Causeway Open Award Centre to undertake the Expedition section with the remaining pupils.
Many pupils at Dalriada go on to complete their Gold Award. Progression onto this level depends upon the pupils completing all sections of the Silver Award. Pupils usually complete their practice hike in the Antrim Hills and their qualifying hike is undertaken in the Mourne Mountains.