Sea cadets have been recognised at an award ceremony after taking on a challenging leadership course.
Following a weekend of leadership activities - which put the 13 and 14-year-olds under pressure to complete a number of tasks - three cadets from Boldon School received the rewards.
As part of an award ceremony at the school, Molly Smith, Kara Mohammed and Cade Scott received their ILM qualification, through the CVQO - formerly the Cadet Vocational Qualifications Organisation.
Ingrid Moir, commanding officer at the unit based at Boldon School, said: “I’m so proud of all of the cadets. I’ve trained cadets for a long time but I’m not use to seeing them in a school environment.
“Here I see them as students and cadets. When they first started doing this they were students who called me ma’am, now they’re cadets.
“The difference in them is huge, their confidence has grown massively.
“The respect I get from them isn’t just to me as a commanding officer, but I see them give every adult, each other, and their peers the same respect.”
The cadets, who were among 17 cadets from three districts to receive the qualification, completed a year’s service in the Sea Cadets before carrying out a number of tasks on a two-day residential.
Mrs Moir, who has been involved with the Sea Cadets for almost 30 years, added: “The cadets had to take charge of teams and complete problem solving tasks.
“It’s a packed two days. It all runs smoothly and the cadets know the routine with the older ones helping the younger ones.
“They’re put under pressure and the way they handled it at the weekend compared to the first task showed just how much they’d grown.”
The Boldon School unit was set up after the Queen approved a commission for adult volunteer officers in the Cadet Forces.
At the award ceremony saw the 17 cadets from the Tees Tyne South District, Teesside District and Northumberland District receive the qualification.
The ceremony, which was attended by the Lord-Lieutenant for the Tyne and Wear, Mrs Susan Winfield OBE, South Tyneside Mayor Coun Ken Stephenson, also saw cadets at the Boldon School unit receive good conduct awards.
There are currently 35 cadets registered at the unit after it was launched in September 2016.