The Archbishop of York Youth Trust have been awarded the Charity of Character Kitemark from the Association of Character Education (ACE) the UK’s leading character education body.
Following an evaluative process in October 2020, led by Tom Haigh, CEO of the ACE, and Dr Tom Harrison, Secretary of the Association of Character Education and Director of Education at the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues, Birmingham University, it is confirmed that the Archbishop of York Youth Trust met the high standards required to be awarded the Charity of Character Kitemark.
The Youth Trust have developed the Young Leaders Award (YLA), available from KS1 to KS4/post-16. The YLA is a fully resourced online leadership and character education programme, designed by the Archbishop of York Youth Trust, to be delivered by teaching staff within the classroom. The Award has empowered over 100,000 pupils from 850 schools to learn and practice key leadership skills and character virtues and to transform their communities through social action. The YLA has clear links to SMSC, British Values, PSHE, Character Education, Citizenship, RE and SIAMS.
The Kitemark is awarded by ACE to organisations that enable both individual and societal flourishing through character education. The development of both moral and civic virtues is central to the YLA and the work of the Trust. The social action component of the Award offers the opportunity for interaction between the pupils and other members of society, helping facilitate social mixing and community cohesion, decreasing loneliness and generally helping those in need.
Pupils and teaching staff from Manor CE Academy in York were interviewed as part of the kitemark assessment and reported that their levels of empathy and understanding had increased as a result of supporting elderly residents within the surrounding community. These comments closely aligned with the headteacher’s view that the programme was about ‘compassion in action.’
Nick Watson, Chief Operating Officer of the Youth Trust, said:
“We’re delighted to have been awarded the Kitemark by ACE, who are leaders in the field of character education. Our exciting and inclusive Young Leaders Award, offers opportunities for children and young people to consider and develop their character and leadership skills, influenced by the teachings of Jesus.”