Sailing & STV
Sailing and Sail training on the school’s Sail Training Vessel is one of the distinctive features of the broad curriculum at Gordonstoun.
Sail training develops our young peoples’ teamwork and leadership skills and lets them experience wholly new situations. While enjoying the stunning scenery of Scotland’s West Coast, they get a growing sense of their capabilities.
In preparation for sail training voyages in Years 10 and 12, seamanship training is part of the curriculum for Years 9 and 10 (and for the new students in Year 12). Students learn fundamental sailing skills in Gordonstoun’s Seamanship Department at the local harbour in Hopeman and out on the Moray Firth in the school’s two cutters.
These experiences lay the foundation for skills needed on Ocean Spirit, Gordonstoun’s 80-foot, ocean-going boat. She is equipped with the very latest navigation and communications equipment, and built to the exacting safety standards laid down by the UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency.
The permanent staff on board, including the full-time Captain, are used to working with novice sailors, and students are trained in all aspects of crewing the vessel. They spend a week in Year 10 and a week in Year 12 sailing around the West Coast of Scotland. By the end of the week the student crew are confidently plotting their course and sailing the boat.
This experience helps them navigate the sea, and their broader lives, with increased confidence and resilience.