More than 400 local pupils are set to take part in the innovative Andover Junior Graduation event at The Lights on Friday 12 and Tuesday 16 July.
Organised by Test Valley Borough Council and the University of Winchester, the event is now in its sixth year and is an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of pupils from each of the town’s nine primary schools. The experience also encourages students to think about future options as they progress to secondary school and is a chance to don a traditional mortar board and gown.
Anne Hughes, Executive Headteacher, Knights Enham Junior School commented: “I have seen children take part in the graduation ceremony for six years. In that time I have been impressed by how proud the children and their parents are that the children are now ready to move on to the next step in their education. The children’s aspirations really grow especially when they hear university students speak about their own achievements. It is a truly momentous and proud occasion to be part of.”
Leader of the Council, Councillor Ian Carr added: “I am delighted that an initiative which we started back in 2008 is going from strength to strength and now involves all nine Andover junior schools. Pupils from Knight’s Enham and Portway who participated in the first event are now about to graduate from senior school and will face a decision about what to do next. I hope that the Junior Graduation event helped inform their future plans and look forward to hearing about their progress.”
“Although circumstances continue to change, the value of education and learning and the aspiration to succeed are vital for today’s young people. As Andover grows so will our work with schools, Andover College and the University of Winchester. In just a few months’ time the new infant school at Picket Twenty will welcome the first pupils through its doors. Perhaps in a few years its students will also take part in the Andover Junior Graduation event.”
Year six pupils attending Andover Junior Graduation receive a certificate from the university and a photograph with their head or form teacher. Students will also be joined by Mayor of Test Valley Councillor Janet Whiteley, Test Valley Borough Council’s Economic Portfolio Holder Councillor Peter Giddings as well as senior personnel from the University of Winchester.