Schools in the Bognor Regis area can get funding for outdoor learning adventures

More than 1,400 disadvantaged young people will be able to enjoy an outdoor learning adventure this year, thanks to a new funding boost.
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Schools from across the South East will be able to apply for grant support to help deliver fun educational experiences, such as hands-on conservation work, wildlife surveying, practical geography and geology, or learning ways to tackle climate change.

It comes after a new round of funding from the South Downs National Park Trust, the official independent charity of the National Park, supported by AMEX and the Sussex Community Foundation.

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The initiative builds on the success of the grants scheme last year as thousands of children enjoyed school trips to beautiful sites in the National Park or took part in fun nature-based activities in their school grounds.

An education class fo r school childen in the national parkAn education class fo r school childen in the national park
An education class fo r school childen in the national park

Julie Fawcett, chair of the South Downs National Park Trust, said: “We’re really excited to be able to provide funding once again for these vital school grants. School trips and outdoor learning are such an important part of growing up and learning more about the world.

“Yet research shows that travel costs are a significant barrier for planning school trips. We think every child deserves the opportunity to get out into the great outdoors and learn more about the natural world. Nature gives us everything – water, clean air, food – and it’s so important that young people are inspired by it as they are the future custodians of our amazing, but fragile, planet.”

Schools with more than 10 per cent of pupils eligible for Free School Meals can apply for support when planning trips up to the end of summer term.

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They will receive a grant up to £750 (£500 travel, £250 activity costs) when visiting a site or provider in the South Downs Learning Network, which is made up of over 100 learning providers across the region. Grants will be awarded on a first-come, first served basis.

Jonathan Dean, education officer for the National Park and who will be helping to deliver the scheme, said: “This fantastic initiative is all about helping young people discover the special qualities of the National Park, bringing their curriculum to life while also enjoying the health and wellbeing benefits of a deeper connection with nature.

“Outdoor education should be part of all young people’s learning and development, and understanding more about the natural world serves a wider purpose to inspire young people into future action and careers that support a green recovery.”

Teachers and pupils have been full of praise for the school trips last year.

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Children from Bartons Primary School, in Bognor Regis, enjoyed a trip to Marwell Zoo.

School Secretary Debbie Camp said: “The grant made a huge difference to our families, especially during Covid times. Thank you for your support, it made such a difference to our families and it was so easy to apply for the grant.”

For more information and to apply for a grant visit