A girls’ school has become the first in the country to adopt an international peace programme into its curriculum.
The Mount School in York has adopted the PeaceJam education programme – which has been designed by Nobel Peace Prize Laureates – into its 6th form college syllabus.
Many schools in England use the international programme through things like after-school clubs, but it is thought that The Mount is the first to have embedded it into the actual curriculum.
The programme includes specific content on the lives and work of the Nobel Peace Laureates, as well as activities allowing the exploration of topics such as violence, poverty and reconciliation.
The international PeaceJam Foundation, based in Colorado, America, is supported by 11 Nobel Peace Laureates and works to encourage students to identify and initiate projects to benefit their local community.
After attending PeaceJam’s annual UK conference where students met Nobel Peace Laureate Adolpho Perez Esquivel, the head of college, Jo Hayward, and head of history, Helen Snelson, made the decision to adopt the programme into the curriculum.
The Mount will host its own “PeaceJam Slam” at the school in October. The guest speaker will be Rahab Maina, the human rights defender from Kenya, who has staged a long fight for the rights of exploited workers on Kenyan farms.
Ms Snelsen said: “The curriculum will inform our girls about global issues, using the Nobel Peace Prize Laureates as inspiring examples of people who have peacefully engaged in the most difficult problems facing our world.
“The aim is to inform them of the issues, give them the necessary skills to engage in action, and give them the confidence to know that peaceful action lies well within their abilities.”
Student Alice Elliot added: “PeaceJam has given me a unique perspective and insight into the lives of Nobel Peace Laureates and how we can use their inspiring stories in everyday life.”