Awards & Leadership

Recognising student success, leadership and community contribution is central to our ethos of developing well rounded, mature, and confident young people.

We are committed to ensuring that our students leave school having built their knowledge and grown their character; with outstanding academic outcomes, but also with the leadership qualities for a successful future.

We strongly believe that the most effective reward comes from being recognised for one’s achievements and contributing in a positive way. Our rewards and leadership structure reflects our core aims.

This short brochure sets out the range of awards available and how these integrate with our leadership programme as students progress throughout their school career.

Our Awards and Leadership structure works on an application basis. A student can apply for their bronze, silver, and gold Thurstable Way Awards by having:

  • Excellent level of attendance (unless evidenced medical reasons prevent this)

  • Good or outstanding effort in all subjects

  • A record of service and contribution to the school community

  • Evidence of service and contribution to the local community

  • Been awarded additional CRESTs

  • Being awarded postcards from Staff

  • Receive Recognition through headteachers commendation

There are two windows in which a student can apply for the Thurstable Way Awards - students will be informed of these windows in assemblies. A student who has not been successful in applying for one or more of these awards, can do so later in their school life.

A comprehensive list of the opportunities available to students, and evidence which a student may use when applying for the Thurstable Way Awards can be found here.

The Headteacher and Platinum CREST award are the most coveted awards available at Thurstable School.

There is no specific criteria for eligibility. Moreover, students are nominated for the awards by staff who feel they have displayed an outstanding example of any, or all of the qualities of the Thurstable Way.

A formal Awards Evening will be held annually at the University of Essex for Year 7-10 at the end of the summer term. Students are nominated (by a range of staff) for awards to recognise academic excellence, outstanding effort, attendance and community service.


Once a student has been awarded their Silver Thurstable Way award they can apply to be a junior ambassador in Year 9. Students undergo a rigorous selection procedure and if appointed, work in a mentoring capacity with Year 7 students and shadow the senior ambassador team/student leadership team.

Once a student has achieved all three lower school awards they can be considered for the role of ‘senior ambassador’ in the Autumn term of Year 10. Ambassador appointments are made following a month-long probationary period.

Once a newly appointed senior ambassador has completed their probationary period, a senior ambassador badge is awarded. A further selection process will lead to the appointment of senior ambassadors and mentors who manage teams of senior and junior ambassadors who work with Year 7 to 9 students respectively.

Finally, a small number of students will go through a stringent, final phase of selection for the positions of Lead Student, Deputy Lead Student and senior ambassadors - this will form the Student Leadership Team (SLT).

The School Council

The Year group council is made up of elected members from form groups - one student is elected by their peers, the other by the form tutor.

From this elected list, the Head of Year will appoint two School council representatives who will represent the Year group in Whole School Council meetings.

Two representatives from each form group will also be elected as Teaching and Learning ambassadors - this will help inform the school as to what is working and not working for the students in lessons, and help shape the future of the school. A representative from this elected list will go forward to present the views of the year group.

Each form group will have an elected inclusion and diversity ambassador. Each of the positions detailed above will have input into the schedule and agenda for school council meetings.

Extra Curricular Awards

We encourage all students to participate in community events and join as many extra-curricular clubs and societies as they wish to. These additional pursuits can be used as evidence to support applications for Thurstable Way Awards. Significant contributions to the wider community are also considered as evidence for the Thurstable Way Awards if parents or students inform the school of these.

Awards For Competitive Sport

Competitive sports are an integral part of Thurstable Schools’ values. We encourage all students to participate and will actively encourage those who develop exceptional talent and skills to compete at a higher level.

Sports colour will be awarded for Year 7-9 (junior sports colours) and Years 10-11 (senior).

sports colours) These are awarded to students for dedication and commitment to their teams and societies as demonstrated by attending training regularly and participating in school fixtures.

Gold and Silver Sports Colours - These are awarded to students who display an exceptional level of sportsmanship and achieve a high level of competence in a relevant sport. The silver sports colour will be awarded in Years 7-9, and the Gold Sports colour in Years 10-11.

Sports Personality of the Year - Each year two students from Thurstable are selected for their outstanding contributions to competitive sports.