The farm has been recognised by Edexcel as a centre for BTEC qualifications.
What this means in practice in that in recognition of the high quality of education the farm provides it can now teach any of the BTEC courses and be able to validate those qualifications at the farm. Previously candidates had to be entered by their schools and the courses were subject to verification by external inspectors provided by Edexcel.
We are now able to explore the possibility of providing BTEC qualifications as evening classes for adults in the community. The farm could offer BTECs in Countryside and the Environment at Level 1, Level 2 (GCSE level C) or level 3 (BTEC National, A level) if there was sufficient take up from the community.
Why not let us know if there is a BTEC evening class which you would like us to consider.
What is a BTEC?
• BTECs are work-related qualifications suitable for a wide range of students.
• They're built to accommodate the needs of employers and allow progression to university.
• They provide a practical, real-world approach to learning without sacrificing any of the essential subject theory.
• They can be taken alongside, or in place of, GCSEs and A levels. They can also form the knowledge component of Foundation Learning or BTEC Apprenticeships.
• Available across a wide range of industry sectors, they're continually developed and updated to meet the needs of employers and learners.
Chris Gill MA Education Adviser for the River Bourne Community Farm. I can be contacted at
To arrange a school visit email visits@riverbournecommunity farm.org.uk or telephone 01722 330667
From September 2012 to July 2013 the farm was able to offer over 75 free visits to local schools and community groups. The farm is in receipt of an educational access grant from Natural England which allows the farm to offer these visits free of charge. A number of the closer schools arrive on foot, in a traditional crocodile; those from further afield have only the cost of their bus to find.
Where possible, the tours relate to the pupils’ syllabus, the environment, animal welfare, food production etc. For many youngsters, this will be the first time that they have come in to close contact with farm animals.
Trained farm volunteers lead the visits and around 2,500 children a year benefit from a great learning experience at the farm. In addition, the farm hosts visits by special -needs groups, organisations for the elderly and the disabled.