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DofE v CCF

(32 Posts)
Dancergirl Wed 03-Jun-15 20:50:36

Dd is in Year 9 and has to choose between D of E or Combined Cadet Force (CCF) for Year 10. She has to make the decision quite soon. For CCF they can choose between army, navy and RAF.

She really fancies the RAF so will put that as first choice and then possibly D of E as second choice then navy. She definitely doesn't want to do army!

Can someone tell me the pros and cons of both? I've heard that D of E is much more time consuming. For CCF they just have to turn up each week plus a couple of weekend commitments throughout the year.

They don't all get their first choice so I'm worried she might end up with D of E and then will struggle time wise.

gonegrey56 Wed 03-Jun-15 20:56:30

My dd chose CCF over DofE, and chose army which she - amazingly ! - really enjoyed. The time commitment was less, she only did one summer camp, but overall it was a fantastic experience - she ended up as Lance Corp DD ....

LIZS Wed 03-Jun-15 20:57:28

How odd. Dc school can opt for both and ccf counts as service/physical element of D of E. If she has hobbies she does anyway for skill and volunteering, it really needn't be that time consuming. Alternatively could she do D of E externally.

stikmatix Wed 03-Jun-15 21:31:25

Well if it were me I'd go for the Community Service instead of CCF or DofE!
Sorry, not helpful! Have you already had the presentation? If she's not in the slightest but outdoorsy then neither is great.
My DD is in the year below so haven't got to this point yet, but from what I remember from when I was there, all sections of CCF had a number of activities that they all did (not at the same one of course). They all had to do the horrible assault course, and other pursuits such as canoeing etc. If your DD is not into that then she can't acois it regardless of the section. If she likes that stuff then great, she should pick the section that she finds most interesting I guess.

I think DofE could be very time consuming I guess it depends on what activities a peson already does and how many extra things need to be done.

Has anyone complained about them being forced to do something which takes place solely outside school hours?

Dancergirl Wed 03-Jun-15 21:40:24

Has anyone complained about them being forced to do something which takes place solely outside school hours?

No, that's an odd thing to say. They're fantastic opportunities.

InstitutionCode Wed 03-Jun-15 21:48:21

My DS1 is an Army Cadet and doing DofE with them, so won't she be able to do DofE even if she opts for CCF?

prettybird Wed 03-Jun-15 21:54:45

Ds is nearing the end of his Bronze DoE. It's not been too time consuming: the only thing "extra" has been the volunteering he's had to do (not sure how many hours - think it was 10 hours). The Skills and Physical elements he's been able to integrate into the existing (two) sports he follows.

As he's doing it through the school, he's had a few after school sessions, going through map reading and preparations for their expeditions.

There was one practice walk on a Saturday and then 2x2 day expedition trips (the first the practice one for the assessed one). Both of those involved a Friday out of school, going into Saturday meant dh and I had a "free" night wink The other group did their assessed expedition midweek so got two days out of school shock

stikmatix Wed 03-Jun-15 21:58:18

Hahaha - no I agree with you totally! I think there are people who don't like it and wondered if it came up and what the response was....

I guess the best thing is after hearing all the info to pick the one you genuinely like the sound of the most as first choice - that's what u think I will advise mine when the one comes.

Hope she gets her first choice in the end!

Ladymuck Wed 03-Jun-15 22:06:08

I have a very disorganised ds rather than a dd, but we have steered him towards CCF over DofE (he could have done both), mainly because we know a large number of students who never succeed in getting everything signed off under DofE, and ds was likely to fall into that category. The supervision and "one night a week" routine of CCF gives him more chance to actually stay on and become an NCO. And whilst you can develop leadership skills through either route, I think that the NCO course is very good in that respect.

sablepoot Wed 03-Jun-15 22:16:34

It does depend on the child how much extra time it takes and which will be most enjoyable. For DofE the only extra bits mine had to do (over what they would have done anyway) was the paperwork and the expeditions. Ccf provided the residential for gold DofE, so there was a bit of crossover eventually. Most of the ccf activities were optional as far as I recall, so that didn't have to be a time consuming option either, but ccf did provide very low cost opportunities to learn sailing, canoeing, try flying etc. etc. though, so if it was me that had to choose I'd go with ccf and sign up for every course going, but not everyone likes the regimentation.

InstitutionCode Thu 04-Jun-15 08:32:21

How does everyone feel about sending their children off to a military recruitment organisation, which CCF and the individual cadet forces definitely are? Dh is a instructor with Army Cadets and until recently the official line has been that they aren't running a recruitment campaign for the Army but that's changed recently and they now recognise officially that one of their reasons for being is to find Army recruits.

I love what DS gets out of cadets, adventure, experiences, leadership and other skills , lovely friends, all at very low cost, but I am a bit uncomfortable with military aspect of it all and especially the idea that they're trying to recruit him for the army. I'd say of those who've turned 18 since he's been there, c. 30% have joined up.

janinlondon Thu 04-Jun-15 08:38:13

DD's school does both - she is in CCF Navy and does DofE. Navy is fab - they all had their International PADI Dive certificates in year 9.

Ladymuck Thu 04-Jun-15 08:42:35

I suspect that there may be a difference between in the recruitment ethos between a school sponsored CCF and external cadet units.

Knottyknitter Thu 04-Jun-15 08:44:13

I did both. They were both voluntary though, which makes a big difference, everyone actually wanted to be there, so both had much better atmospheres than compulsory things (eg swimming with CCF (navy) rather than swimming lesson in school.

You can use CCF to count towards bits of d of e (gold residential etc) which was handy. My fave was d of e though, I was a supervisor for bronze and silver expeditions by the end. Unless thinking of a military career I'd suggest d of e as more flexible to own interests (you play an instrument, great, fill this page in, etc).

homebythesea Thu 04-Jun-15 09:39:29

My DS chose Navy CCF - he's allerguc to anything outdoorsy or involving dirt of any kind, and he really enjoyed it. They did boat trips, no assault courses or anything like that. I don't think RAF involves any getting dirty either!

homebythesea Thu 04-Jun-15 09:40:43

Institute- a school based CCF unit is definiteky not primarily a recruiting ground. Entirely different to a cadet unit

Narvinectralonum Thu 04-Jun-15 09:47:04

I wouldn't be happy with my kids doing either.

Millymollymama Thu 04-Jun-15 10:11:55

Both mine did Bronze D of E. No CCF on offer but DD2 did dancing for her skill so not CCF minded at all. I would choose the option your child will enjoy. Mine didn't want to spend the time doing Gold D of E and the long expedition did not appeal. They enjoyed the short expedition for the Bronze though.

DD's very bright friend who had Gold D of E was turned down by all 5 universities she applied to. Don't expect it to help in getting to university. Do it because you want to.

IndridCold Thu 04-Jun-15 10:21:53

I don't think you can read anything at all into the fact that some cadets go on to join up later. In DS's CCF there are several boys who come from military families, and who had already decided that they are going to join the army. You never know, it might put some of them off!

Jeeves93 Fri 05-Jun-15 11:48:14

It seems odd that she is being asked to choose between the two as a lot of the things done in the CCF can be used for DofE. Personally, I would say that CCF would offer a wider range of experiences than only doing DofE.

There is no difference to the recruitment ethos in a school based unit to an external one - neither are recruitment tools for the forces. Very few cadets actually join the armed forces, and most of those that do probably wanted to do so before they joined cadets.

Jeeves93 Fri 05-Jun-15 11:59:17

InstitutionCode - That isn't strictly true. Guidance was released on our policy on providing advice on the armed forces for those so interested, but all cadet forces - school and community based - have always made it an aim to promote an awareness and understanding of the armed forces. Be assured that there is never any pressure on cadets to join up. I run a unit and had 1 cadet join last year and will have another join this year, but both wanted to join the Army before they joined cadets and both actually come from military families anyway!

BackforGood Sat 06-Jun-15 00:09:11

I'm a bit confused by the question tbh.

You can do DofE as part of a CCF Unit.
Or, if you want, as part of your DofE, you can go along to learn a new skill at CCF.
Surely your dd should decide to do whatever she thinks she will enjoy?

As to whether DofE is time consuming - that will depend on what she already does - most of my dcs' activities were things they would be doing anyway, so no additional time.

ErrolTheDragon Sat 06-Jun-15 00:32:04

Puzzled why anyone wouldn't be happy for their kid to do DofE. The main extra in terms of time is the volunteering, which surely no-one can think is a bad thing?

Narvinectralonum Sat 06-Jun-15 10:49:26

Compulsory volunteering isn't actually volunteering. And there are other aspects of DoE that I find questionable. Not least its association with the actual DoE who is...not nice.

Shockers Sat 06-Jun-15 11:02:37

The volunteering part of DofE encouraged DS2 to look around for something different to do (he already volunteers elsewhere in 2 different capacities). This year, he will spend a week helping out on a multi activity holiday for young people with disabilities. I am going too, as he is under 16. This is with an organisation that has taken DD away on holiday in the past. The charity was preparing to call the holiday off this year due to lack of volunteer helpers...

It isn't compulsory volunteering because the DofE isn't compulsory. When a young person signs up, they are saying that they are prepared to volunteer.

Anything that gives a person the opportunity to feel the reward of giving their time and skills to help their wider community can't be a bad thing... can it?

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