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Contact the nearest local CoS group or SoS Coordinator in the Local Authority (check CoS website or contact nearest CoS regional coordinator) to express your interest in pursuing the award.
Read and review the resource pack and this website for ideas and inspiration.
Sign up to an organisational pledge, committing the school to acknowledge and support the CoS charter & organisational values. The award is a whole-school initiative, so securing leadership support at this stage is helpful.
Using the template, undertake an audit of what the school has done to date to meet the award criteria. Each school will have varying needs and priorities but take time to map good things already being done and existing relationships with community and support organisations.
Create a plan to fulfil or develop outstanding criteria. Consider linking this to, or embedding the plan into the school development plan. Reflect on who in your school may be seeking sanctuary & and what support they receive. As well, consider how sanctuary work can be embedded into curriculum planning. Ideally, develop this plan in collaboration with a local CoS group, other School of Sanctuary  or partner organisation that supports SoS near to you.
Decide how you will evidence your plan for the award assessment (create a formal portfolio, visual diary, PowerPoint etc.). The award assessors will use the criteria as an assessment framework, so create a format that works for your school to best showcase your work across the processes of Learn, Embed & Share.
Ensure application process is documented and celebrated via social media and in the school community. As you enact steps to receive recognition, be sure to share these efforts with your school community, using traditional and social media outlets.
Submit an application to the local CoS group, partner organisation, Regional Coordinator or via CoS website.
Organise an assessment visit with the relevant CoS group and/or phone interview to review application. Plan how you would like to best showcase the efforts the school and include opportunities for the assessors to discuss SoS with the leadership, pupils and teachers.
Once awarded, plan a celebration and highlight the achievement on the school website and social media outlets. Link up with local groups and schools and develop ways to celebrate Refugee Week. Use the award as a launch pad for further development of sanctuary work across the school
Maintain the criteria of the award in whole school planning and revisit the assessment template annually to update activities and ongoing planning. Plan for re-appraisal in three years.
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