Award-winning young carer used her V Cert to boost attendance by 40%

Keeley Crompton, learner at Chorlton High School, has been awarded Highly Commended in the Learner of the Year - Against All Odds category in our Aspiration Awards.

Suffering from mild scoliosis, a curvature of the spine, Keeley’s education was initially held back by her physical health along with a lack of ambition. Her engagement with secondary education has improved year-on-year, going from 56% attendance in Year 7 to 96% in Year 11. Keeley and her teachers believe this is due to a positive change in mind-set, which has helped her confidence and motivation to grow immensely, especially since beginning the Level 2 Certificate in Food and Cookery.

“Studying a V Cert is one thing that really helped me to focus at school.”

Keeley commented: “I feel proud of myself for how I have turned things around at school as my attendance in Year 7 and 8 wasn’t great, but I knew change was needed and that the change had to come from me.

It’s not always easy to change how you think about things and at times I still struggle and don’t always feel like I’m doing well. However, I think it’s important to have the ability to keep going and to trust those around you to support you.

Studying a V Cert qualification is one thing that really helped me to focus at school, as it is practical and is more like the things I want to do when I leave school.”


Family orientated

Keeley’s mother suffers from health issues, which means Keeley often helps out at home, particularly in helping to care for her younger brother, Nathan, who has just enrolled at Chorlton High School’s sister school. Keeley is always offering support to ensure that he is transitioning to Key Stage 3 well and engaging with school in a more positive way than she initially did. She cares greatly for her brother’s education and encourages that he is always arriving to school punctual and ready to learn.


Award supports future learning

With aspirations to work with animals, Keeley is determined to leave school with the necessary qualifications that will assist her with her future learning. This dedication is shown not only through her effort in class and current attendance, but also through her attendance at after-school revision sessions. Keeley received Highly Commended for this award as she has used the V Cert qualification to make positive improvements to her life and has big aspirations for the future.

With Keeley’s career aspirations in mind, it’s going to be very important for her to continue with her education and gain other qualifications in the future that will allow her to be successful in her chosen sector. We awarded Keeley a laptop as her prize, which will be extremely useful to her when continuing her learning next year.

Steven Langstaff, Keeley’s form teacher said: “Keeley is a huge source of pride for me following 5 years as her form tutor. To have taken steps to change her own mind-set about education and to ensure she is being the best she possibly can be shows an immense maturity and will to succeed.

Her engagement with school has improved year on year to the point where in Year 11 she has had excellent attendance and equipped herself well to tackle the exams she has prepared for. She is funny, resilient and motivated to become a success in life.

I am delighted that Keeley has been recognised for this award, the culmination of five years of improvement and progress, often in the face of personal setbacks – well done Keeley!”


About the awards

This is the second year of the Aspiration Awards, where we asked schools and teachers to nominate a ‘Learner of the Year’ with big aspirations and the determination to see it though. The scheme was developed to recognise learners who are using technical qualifications to help them reach their goals and make positive improvements to their life.

Leanne Poole
Leanne Poole
EPA Plus has been responding quickly to the changing situation presented by COVID-19 to meet the needs of providers, employers and apprentices, and we’d like to share the results of this.