Farm link for academy pupils

The Willow students
The Willow students
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Sawtry Village Academy has teamed up with a farm to deliver an animal care course for pupils.

The academy’s Willow Centre has signed a two-year contract with a local, family-run, educational farm ‘Homgrownandraised’ to help deliver the course accredited by ASDAN.

This new partnership provides opportunities for students to develop animal care knowledge and skills in a practical way. The Willow has five students currently working towards the year-long course, with hopes of then going on to study a BTEC in animal care.

Once a month, individuals from Home grownandraised come into the academy with animals such as lambs, ducks and pigs for the students to learn about feeding, growing and tagging – all activities which help work towards their qualification.

The farm has also provided the Willow with an incubator and 17 duck eggs which the students are caring for until they hatch.

Helen Donald, manager of The Willow, commented: “The great thing about the ASDAN animal care course is that students can recognise their involvement in caring for animals in any situation. It’s great that we have Homgrownandraised on board to help deliver the practical side of the course. Our students get so excited each time they come in – there are lots of different activities involved which can be adapted to meet the students’ individual situations and needs.”

Julie Millard, owner of Homegrownandraised, also added: “We are delighted to have entered into partnership with Sawtry Village Academy. The opportunity to work with children to gain a qualification in animal care is something very close to our hearts, and we look forward to broadening this part of our business to involve more schools in the future.”