INNOVATIVE pupils have won a £500 grant to set up an internet buddy system to support young students at their school.

Sixth-formers at the Beaconsfield High School, Wattleton Road, Beaconsfield, won the Barclays New Futures Fast Track Award to finance the initiative which offers useful advice for the youngsters.

The internet page offers a forum where pupils can contact their buddies by email and ask questions about homework and coursework. They can also ask about more sensitive issues like bullying and friendship.

The project is part of a citizenship course designed to educate and inform students by enabling them to start up schemes which benefit their local community. The initiative caught the eye of Barclays' sponsorship scheme which offers over £1 million in cash and resources to schools every year.

A 'buddy' sixth-former said: "The problems that we are hoping to support include friendship issues, bullying, homework, coursework and anything that the younger students feel they want to share with us and gain our help with. In truth we will gain invaluable communication skills through being 'buddies'."

Head of the sixth form Katharine Edgar, added: "It has helped to break down barriers between year groups and helped students learn how to handle difficult and sometimes sensitive issues."

The project, chosen by the pupils, received a welcome boost from the scheme's Fast Track Student Award, designed to give sixth-form students the chance to undertake a community project quickly and effectively.

Any other Year 12 or 13 students who would like to be considered for a grant can pick up an entry form from or call 020 7221 7883 before Friday.