McAuley Catholic High School introduce the buddy scheme


McAuley Catholic High School introduce the buddy scheme with the help of Talk Direct following the successful Inspire Day with the Diana Award.

It all started when a ‘buddy scheme’ was introduced to the school, the new scheme allowed all students the opportunity to speak to a fellow student about any problems or issues they were going through without having to speak to someone of authority within the school. After several months of the scheme being in place it was apparent that not every student could openly voice their concerns to another student in person. The buddy scheme then developed into a new idea, which involved developing an app, allowing all 1,700 students to speak to someone anonymously. 

As Talk Direct are sponsors of the Diana Award,  Linda Jones went into McAuley Catholic High School to meet with children aged 13 – 17 who expressed their interest in helping launch the app. Linda started the session by getting the students into the ‘business mode’ and rallied them up by executing ‘icebreaker’ tasks; Linda also introduced them to business models such as a SWOT analysis, which she then related to them personally by trying to get them to think about their own strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

Questions were also put to the staff:

  • Do you want to be putting this responsibility on the older students?
  • What happens when the students leave for college who will take over then?
  • What happens at night-time and during the weekend you can’t expect students to be working on the app during those times?

Linda will be revisiting the school on two more occasions. The next meeting will be about marketing: how will the students market this app to their fellow 1700 students, how can they create awareness of the app. She will also get them to think about posters and social media. Her aim is to mentor the children and get them ready to present the app to the Head Master.

Although this was a great opportunity to help the students bring their idea to life, it reassured Linda that this initial meeting was not only important for the present time but teaches them something they cannot be taught in the classroom… communication and team working which will help build a bright future for each child who took part. 

The feedback from the children was very positive and they are now looking forward to potentially launching the app to help their fellow students.



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