Youngsters boosted by university taster

Havant Children's University graduation 2012 saw 175 children graduating from schools all over the borough
Havant Children's University graduation 2012 saw 175 children graduating from schools all over the borough

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Youngsters from local schools had a taste of university life when they took part in their own unique graduation ceremony.

A total of 175 children aged between five and 14 from schools in Havant and Horndean have been taking part in a range of extra-curricular activities for the Havant Children’s University.

Each child had their own Passport to Learning which was stamped each time they took part in an activity.

And to celebrate the end of the academic year and their achievements, 175 pupils from 10 schools had the chance to dress up in glamorous graduation robes for a ceremony held at the Kings Theatre in Southsea.

Peter Reed-Forrester, managing director of Ltd, one of the sponsors of the initiative, says: ‘This is a hugely exciting and worthwhile initiative. It was clear from the awards given that all the children had put in a lot of hard work throughout the year to achieve graduation.’

The children took part in the activities either at their own school or at special learning destinations across the area.

And the activities covered the full range of subjects which can be studied at university, including science, journalism, history, film studies, sport, cookery plus arts and crafts.

It’s part of a wider national scheme aimed at promoting learning and raising children’s aspirations, encouraging them to learn new skills.

Peter adds: ‘The kids involved thoroughly enjoyed the whole process from beginning to end.

‘They were clearly excited and extremely proud of what they had achieved.

‘They were all beaming irrepressibly on stage, looking extremely smart and grown up in their gowns and mortar boards.

‘They were all visibly lifted by the presentations, bouncing up to collect their prizes with a wide grin on every face.

‘The level of cheering and clapping that seemed to just go on and on at times showed that they were all lifted by the experience too and obviously very proud of the children.’