An initiative which provides a chance to keep children in school is underway.

The president of Tabard Rugby Club, based in Radlett, has launched School of Hard Knocks (SOHK) for pupils at Hertswood Academy in Borehamwood.

SOKH is a social inclusion charity that will jointly work with the rugby club to support students. It has been driven by president, Ross Hopcroft.

Under the initiative, 25 pupils from year nine will form a rugby team. They will take part in an hourly session over a period of 12 weeks in the academic year, spanning three academic years in total.

Not only will the sessions provide an opportunity to build new experience and learn new skills, mentoring will also help keep them on track at school and solve any issues they may be facing while learning.

Meanwhile, the Rugby Football Union (RFU) has committed to a six-year ‘All Schools’ programme of rugby, which Hertswood Academy will be involved in. Working alongside Tabard RFC, the RFU will deliver a boys’ and girls’ curriculum as well as an after school programme which will take place at Tabard’s home in Cobden Hill.

Mr Hopcroft has worked with Hertsmere Borough Council youth committee to promote the initiative and funding has been made possible through locality and community grants.