Brookvale Primary School in Roncorn has been praised by the Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry for successfully tackling bullying for a decade and continuing the legacy begun by their late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales.
In a letter they said:
“The Duke and The Prince were delighted to learn that Brookvale Primary School has won the Diana Anti-Bullying Champions Award for 10 years running. Tackling bullying is an issue Their Royal Highnesses’ strongly support. They send their sincere congratulations to the award winners and their best wishes to all at Brookvale Primary School.”
The school has the distinction of having received the Diana Anti-Bullying Champion Award 10 times in a row and is believed to be the only school in the North West to have achieved this accomplishment.
Pupils at Brookvale Primary School complete a seven-week training programme in order to become anti-bullying ambassadors. Once successful, their key role is to prevent intimidation on the playground.
Led by a group of nine, year six pupils—known as the ‘Brookvale Buddies’—they do this by helping and encouraging their peers, promoting friendship skills and anti-bullying strategies. One such strategy is the use of a ‘buddy bench’ where children who feel alone can sit, prompting other students to engage and encourage them through inclusion.
Head Teacher Paula Casey said of the programme:
“We are very proud of our buddies. They have been chosen for the award because of their inspirational qualities demonstrated through their commitment and work in this field. They help children who are distressed or in need of help for many reasons especially friendship and bullying issues. The Buddies listen and try to put themselves in the child’s shoes.”
In a special ceremony on Friday, 17 June, the Mayor of Halton, Councillor Ged Philbin, presented the awards to ‘Brookvale Buddies’ Georgia Crilly, Jack Dalton, Ellie May Kirby, Adam Kolender, Eva Abbott, Kaitlin French, Ella Welsh, Maddison Langton and Emily Cully.
Board member for young people and families, Tom McInerney (Halton Councillor) said:
“The Brookvale Buddies are a credit to their school and we are proud of the work they are doing to help combat bullying.”