Burnley stars hand out high school prizes

Burnley league winning stars Andre Gray and Sam Vokes with pupils at Colne Park High School. (S)
Burnley league winning stars Andre Gray and Sam Vokes with pupils at Colne Park High School. (S)

Two of Burnley’s league winning stars left Colne high school pupils starstruck when they visited to present them with prizes.

Year 9 students at Park High School, who had taken part in the Burnley FC in the Community Premier League Enterprise Programme, were stunned when Andre Gray and Sam Vokes arrived to present them with their awards for successfully completing the programme.

Burnley league winning stars Andre Gray and Sam Vokes with Colne Park High School's Pastoral Support Worker Pauline Crabtree. (S)

Burnley league winning stars Andre Gray and Sam Vokes with Colne Park High School's Pastoral Support Worker Pauline Crabtree. (S)

Using football as the ‘hook’ to engage students, the programme teaches youngsters about basic principles of business and demonstrates how Maths and English are relevant in the world of work.

With particular reference to Burnley FC, students see how these subjects are the vehicle by which the club operates as a business.

Following the presentation the players chatted with the students and staff, answering questions about their careers and Burnley FC. Both players agreed that a great deal of their individual success, and that of their team, was the result of determination, hard work and teamwork.

Gray, the Championship Player of the Year, said: “I was a bit of a trouble maker at school but I always knew I wanted to play football.

“It got to the point that I was told I wouldn’t be able to play football if I was bad at school. So I got my act together, got a grip and made that choice, and in doing so turned a negative situation into a positive one.”

On next season, Vokes added: “The Premier League – it’s a higher class of quality players, tough competition.

“It’s seriously a great place to play football and it’s a great achievement to play in it. It’s what you strive for.”

Pauline Crabtree, Pastoral Support Worker, said: “Thanks to Burnley FC in the Community for organising the programme and especially to Sam and Andre for coming to see us.

“The programme and the visit were both fantastic experiences for the students and they learned a great deal from two inspirational people.”