Awards praise for pioneering school scheme

A PROJECT aimed at pupils at risk of exclusion from school has received praise at the annual West Lothian Council Stellar Awards Ceremony.

The pioneering Trade Up scheme, devised by West Lothian College in partnership with Bathgate Academy, is designed to re-engage youngsters through encouraging an interest in the trades.

Six boys from Bathgate Academy took part the project from September 2008 to January 2009.

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After discovering that each of the boys shared a combined interested in motorbikes, they were given the challenge of producing a motorsport information booklet and were given classes in creative writing and IT to help.

Course tutor Carolyn Bloom said the course had been a huge success in encouraging the youngsters to see the value of education.

"I am extremely proud of the boys and the progress that they have made," she said.

The pupils and staff from Bathgate Academy involved in the Trade up project recently attended the Stellar Awards ceremony, which recognises excellence in education in West Lothian, to receive a plaque.