Wharton Park gets top marks for educational visits

Staff at Wharton Park are celebrating after the venue received national recognition for the quality of its educational visits.

The Durham City park has been awarded a Learning Outside the Classroom Quality Badge for offering young people on school trips a high quality learning experience.

The national award, presented by the Council for Learning Outside the Classroom, is awarded to destinations which are deemed to provide a good quality of education as well as a safe environment for pupils.

Louise Porter, Durham County Council’s parks and countryside education officer, said: “Being awarded the LOtC Quality Badge is fantastic for all the staff here as it recognises their hard work and dedication.

“We look forward to welcoming even more children and young people from across the county and further afield to Wharton Park to take advantage of everything we have to offer.”

The park, which includes a heritage centre with a purpose built education room, offers a wide range of workshops linked to the curriculum with practical and creative activities designed to encourage children to develop an interest in the natural world.

Elaine Skates, Chief Executive of CLOtC, said: “Educational visits are among the most memorable experiences in a child’s school life.

“The LOtC Quality Badge offers teachers a guarantee that not only is a venue providing the sort of educational value that they can build on in class long after the visit, but that they also have the appropriate risk management structure in place.

“Learning outside the classroom has many proven educational benefits and the badge will reduce red tape and provide assurance for schools, thereby ensuring that many more young people have memorable, exciting and valuable learning outside the classroom.

“I congratulate Wharton Park on being awarded the LOtC Quality Badge.”