• The Award for Making a Difference - Secondary School of the Year
  • Braes High School
  • Silver Winners
  • 2023
  • Scotland

This community-focused school collaborates with pupils, parents/carers, staff and partners through an Onwards & Upwards programme that aims to close the attainment gap, provide support and ensure clear progression pathways. It aims to ensure that everyone feels part of the Braes community, can access the same opportunities and has whatever they need to reach their goals.
The school’s Vision addresses the significant barriers faced by families living in poverty and ensures equity of opportunity. Family learning and engagement are key to ensuring that young people have the support they need at home.
Targeted approaches include a pupil-led group seeking pupil voice around the cost of the school day and working to reduce stigma surrounding poverty. The group introduced ‘Take what you need’ (give what you can) trolleys, created inputs for PSE lessons, and are forming a cluster group with associated primary schools.

The programme’s impact is clear, including the provision of additional financial support for 50+ families, a strong relationship with Barnardos to support families and build relationships between home and school, and a Holiday Activity Programme.