Duke of Edinburgh's Award

The Duke of Edinburgh's Award is central to our Co-Curricular provision at Felsted and forms a major core element of the new Felsted Diploma. We have one of the most active school groups in the country, with participating numbers so high that we have our own DofE Operating Authority, ensuring that all Felstedians gain the full benefits of the opportunities provided by this scheme.

Each year, the vast majority of Year 10 students will complete the Bronze Award, at least 50-60% of Year 11 will complete the Silver Award, and between 20 and 30 Sixth Form students will complete the Gold Award. This major achievement is marked with a presentation by a member of the Royal Family at St James’s Palace.

It is not for nothing that employers and universities value the scheme so greatly – it is undoubtedly true that success in the programme builds confidence, determination and self-esteem, giving students the soft skills that are needed for success in other areas, as well as specific areas of expertise that will stay with them for life

One of the highlights of the year is seeing pupils take on the challenge of Duke of Edinburgh. Recently I was asked about my Diamond DofE certificate, which probably sounds more impressive than it really is! 

I had to admit that it was awarded in 2016 (the 60th anniversary of the DofE scheme) for participating in fund raising for the scheme's charities, through the Common Room Choir, which performed at the summer concert three years ago. 

Read More about Senior Headmaster's Blog: The challenge of Duke of Edinburgh’s Award

The Duke of Edinburgh's Award logo

Award Sections

There are four sections to the award at Bronze and Silver level. These are:

  • Service: Volunteering in the local or school community
  • Skills: Learning new or developing existing skills
  • Expedition: Plan, train for, and complete two adventure expeditions
  • Physical Recreation: Usually completed through our sport programme

At Gold level, there is an additional fifth requirement

  • Residential: Spend time away from home on a shared activity


Progression through the scheme is as follows:

  • In Year 9, students commence the Skill and Sport elements of the Bronze DofE Award, and complete their practice expedition.
  • In the Autumn Term of Year 10, students commence the Service and Expedition elements through formally joining either the CCF or DofE programme, and continue with their Skills and Sports, with the aim of completing the whole Bronze Award by Christmas.
  • From the Spring Term of Year 10 onwards, students who opt to continue with DofE will work on the Silver Award, with the aim of completing this by the end of Year 11. Again, this can either be done within the CCF or through a separate DofE programme.
  • In the Sixth Form, students have the opportunity to tackle the Gold Award.

Adventurous Locations

Each year, service projects, residential trips and expeditions take place in a range of different locations. Recently, destinations travelled to as part of the scheme have included India, Rwanda, Namibia, the Pyrenees and of course the UK, including such diverse projects as shadowing the Devon Police and learning to deer stalk in Somerset, as well as trips across wild country areas such as Dartmoor or the North York Moors.

For more information, please visit the official Duke of Edinburgh's Award website at www.dofe.org