Sandygate School receives prestigious UNICEF UK Gold Award

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Marlow C of E Infant (ie Sandygate) school has been awarded Gold by UNICEF UK’s Rights Respecting School programme.

UNICEF is the world’s leading organisation working for children and their rights. The Rights Respecting Schools Award is granted to schools that show commitment to promoting and realising children’s rights and encouraging adults, children and young people to respect the rights of others in school. Gold is the highest accolade given by UNICEF UK and shows a deep and thorough commitment to children’s rights at all levels of school life. There are around 500 schools across England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales that have received Gold.

The school has been working with UNICEF UK since September 2017. They received their Silver certificate in June 2019 and, despite the global pandemic, they have continued working to achieve their Gold certificate which was awarded on 29th April 2021.

Some of the activities which have been undertaken in school, led by the Rights Ambassadors, are Anti-Bullying Week, Odd Socks Day, a food drive for One Can Trust and linking with Marlow Refugee Action. A Rights Respecting Article of the Week is circulated to all families in school each week with ideas on activities to do at home and this was a great way of continuing our focus on rights during lock down.

Pictured are Mrs Emma Howarth, KS1 teacher and Rights Respecting Lead with the Rights Ambassadors in front of the Gold banner displayed with pride at the school.

Mrs Howarth said ‘I am so proud of what the school has achieved.  The whole school community has worked incredibly hard towards this achievement and it is very much deserved.‘


Headteacher, Mrs Sharon Reynolds, said: “We are thrilled to receive the Gold Award from UNICEF UK. The achievement of the Gold award has been the culmination of an exciting journey that we have been on with UNICEF UK. As a Gold Award school, we have worked hard to put children’s rights at the heart of the school and the children have truly benefited from this. They know that they can stand up for what they believe in, understand what their rights are and that those rights are afforded to all children. Underpinning all this, is the importance to value and respect each person as an individual, something that is at the core of our school Christian vision.


The Award recognises achievement in putting the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child at the heart of a school’s planning, policies and practice.  A Rights Respecting School is a community where children’s rights are learned, taught, practised, respected, protected and promoted. UNICEF UK Rights Respecting Schools Programme Director, Frances Bestley, said: “We are delighted that Marlow C of E Infant School has achieved the Gold Award. It was clear that rights underpin the ethos of the school and the values of dignity and respect are lived and valued by the whole school community.”

Article author: Paul Merchant

About the author: Founded in its original version back in 2000 - yes the internet DID exist back then. Brought up in Marlow, went to school here, now has children at the same schools. Quite clearly loves all things Marlow - hence spending over 2 decades doing this!

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