2019 was the seventh year that Croydon High has worked with SHINE (Support and Help in Education) Charitable Trust to host their Serious Fun on Saturdays scheme.
For 10 weeks, from January to March, the school opens its doors on a Saturday and welcomes 30 children from junior schools in the some of the more economically disadvantaged areas of the borough of Croydon.
Each week a different member of Croydon High’s staff leads the sessions, which range from Coding to Cookery, History to Russian, Forensics, Mandarin, Drama, Music and Mathematical Investigations.
A key part of the programme is the involvement of the Sixth Form girls at Croydon High, who throw themselves in to every session and assist in all aspects of the programme. The feedback from these girls is that they feel they benefit as much as the younger students and some great friendships develop between the ages.
Transport is arranged to maximise participation. At the end of the 10 week course, all participants, their families and their teachers are invited in to school for a celebration tea and prize giving where certificates are awarded to all who take part. The children are given lots of individual praise for their efforts and always enjoy the screening of a video made each year, which shows them at work.
From 2019 Croydon High School will be fully funding this initiative to allow SHINE to allocate financial resources to new initiatives.