Story by Graham Jones | Photo by Rashad Hassan
Oasis Academy Fir Vale has won a national Modeshift STARS Silver Award for its work on safe and environmentally friendly initiatives on travelling to school. This included a “Clean Air Assembly”, an art competition and a walk to school event on Clean Air Day in June.
The Modeshift STARS scheme encourages schools to increase levels of sustainable and active travel in order to improve the health and well-being of children and young people.
On 23rd November pupils, staff, parents and other members of the local community came to an award presentation event at the school. Rashad Hassan, Senior Learning Mentor at the academy, had arranged a wonderful celebration and praised the children for the brilliant things that they had done to attain this award. He personally came in for much praise and appreciation of his hard work too.
The Y5 choir performed a great road safety song “Look left, look right!”
Councillor Jackie Drayton presented the award and made an inspiring contribution: “It’s absolutely brilliant. I am very proud to be here to present this award. We need clean air for our community, for our world and for ourselves. If we have clean air in our community, we will feel much better.”
Sergeant Philip Mackey of the South Yorkshire police also made some important points: “Keep working together,and get on with each other and your neighbours.” Helen Round, Principal of Oasis Academy Fir Vale, commented: “This is an exciting day for all of us at Oasis Academy Fir Vale as we receive a silver accreditation from Modeshift STARS on the work we have done to encourage our children to walk, cycle or even scooter in.
“Our children have adapted and shown that they can make a difference to their health, improve their community, and make it a better place.”
In 2016, Oasis Academy Fir Vale signed up to Modeshift STARS and entered the 10-day Active Travel challenge for the first time and were one of only eight schools across South Yorkshire to win a prize, but it doesn’t stop there. In 2017, they then received a Bronze Award for the continuous work students and staff at Oasis Academy Fir Vale were doing to improve sustainable travel.
Since then, they have continued to work with partners and recently joined with the Burngreave Clean Air Campaign to highlight pollution in the community. Rashad Hassan, Senior Learning Mentor at Oasis Academy Fir Vale said: “Our school has achieved the Modeshift STARS Silver accreditation for going above and beyond. Our children have worked with local companies to create posters and highlight the issues and damage that pollution can do to our environment.”
Students and staff have completed many activities, events and work with local companies who have sponsored the academy to promote the walk to school event. They provided a range of healthy breakfasts that were distributed to the children when they arrived.
The message from the Oasis Stars pupils was “Every day we shine. We will always shine bright.”
Then there was a surprise. There was the sound of bagpipes and drums approaching and in marched a dozen members of the City of Sheffield Pipe Band wearing their kilts and full regalia! It was an amazing spectacle, well deserved by the school’s children and staff.