Founders4Schools announces Trustee appointments

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As we celebrate our third year as a charity, I am delighted to announce today that four new Trustees have chosen to join Founders4Schools, bringing the total on our Board to twelve. Mary Curnock Cook is our newest Trustee, together with Peter Gotham, Stephen Bolton and Jonathan Pearl who joined in May and June this year.

Their skills and expertise perfectly complement those of our other Trustees who generously give of their time to enable us to focus on and scale up positive career interactions for hundreds of thousands young people, in collaboration with educators, partners, parents, business leaders, local authorities and the students themselves.  

We couldn’t have reached 630,000 student-employer encounters (SEE’s), each of which has the potential to change the course of a life, without the expertise, counsel and energy of our dedicated board of Trustees F4S Executive Board

These SEE’s inspire young people by helping them understand what skills are needed to improve their employability and are particularly important for more marginalised young people who lack access to professional role models in their immediate environment.   

Mary_Curnock_Cook_3vsDfLL.2e16d0ba.fill-110x100Mary Curnock Cook has a deep understanding of the education sector, with an emphasis on young people who are under-represented or disadvantaged. Specifically, she will help F4S ensure we maintain quality in the services offered to students, at whatever their stage of education.

Mary was Chief Executive of UCAS from 2010 to 2017. Prior to that she was Director of Qualifications and Skills at the QCDA.

She now sits on The Open University Council, is a NED for The Student Loans Company and is a senior advisor to Cairneagle Associates. She chairs the Access Project, is a Trustee of multi-academy trust, United Learning and is on the Advisory Board of the Higher Education Policy Institute. She is also an investor/mentor to a number of EdTech startups.

Stephen_Bolton.2e16d0ba.fill-110x100Stephen Bolton is an experienced Finance Director with extensive knowledge of international markets gained by working for Unilever for over 20 years and for the past few years as Group Controller at Diageo plc. Specifically, his extensive knowledge of strategic finance and compliance to grow successful brands and businesses are invaluable to guiding the scaling ambitions of F4S.  

Stephen is also knowledgeable about the education market and has a passion for talent development. He is an honorary Doctor of Business at Solent University, where he sits on the Board of Governors.

Peter_Gotham.2e16d0ba.fill-110x100Peter Gotham brings extensive experience, having held leading roles in the formation and development of various housing and other organisations over 30 years. Specifically, his experience will help the charity to ensure services meet the needs of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

An accountant by training, Peter writes and lectures extensively, and has served on several national committees, including the national account setting (SORP) committee, at the Institute for Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) and as a Visiting Fellow at the Cass Centre for Charity Effectiveness at City University.

Jonathan_Pearl.2e16d0ba.fill-110x100Jonathan Pearl has a wealth of global experience having been Company Secretary for several international legal entities, most recently as a member of the Executive Management Teams of Sony Electronics in California and Sony Mobile Communications in Tokyo.

Specifically, his experience will help the charity to build global reach and guide on the regulatory environment both in the UK and elsewhere. He has a strong track record of growing successful companies, having been the first legal counsel for Apple in the UK.  

F4S offers over twenty different classroom and work experience services, which are easy for teachers to arrange and help young people steer their course through the future world of work.

We have ambitious plans to improve the life chances of many more young people, by giving them access to the inspiring decision makers in their community, and the new and deep skills that our new Trustees bring will help us to do this much faster.

Sherry Coutu, Executive Chair and Founder


Now you can book 30 students for workplace visits

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Special thanks to two primary school teachers Harriet at Rhyl Primary School and Rosemary O’Brien at Torriano Primary School in Camden who got in touch to see if they could book workplace visits for groups of 30 students, rather than just 10.

The short answer is “yes”!

We’ve added a special new type of workplace visit just foryou.  Now, primary school teachers in Camden (and everywhere) can pull down a fourth type of event “Wpv30″ rather than Wpv10″, choose who you want to visit and voila, we do the rest for you.

Don’t worry if you are addicted to the WPV 10, a favourite of secondary school teachers helping students decide between academic subjects at Uni- so we’re not taking that away.

We are excited to help out primary school teachers of year 6 students with discovery visits as well.

Thank you again for letting us know how best to help you, we are here to help.

Bravo again to Harriet and Rosemary. Let us know how your visits go.

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Founders4Schools first annual review published

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One year on, what have we achieved?

Click on the image to read the full Annual Review

Our first Annual Review sets out what we have achieved during our first year of operation. It describes how the charity is starting to ‘join the dots’ across the country by bringing together schools and colleges, employers and providers of careers and enterprise activities to give young people a better introduction to the world of work and a clearer understanding of what their future might hold.

Their enthusiastic response has meant that schools and colleges throughout the UK that will benefit from the 13,000 business leaders available to them so that young people in the UK are given a better sense of their skills and attitudes and help them identify the best path towards their future career.

The network of inspiring business volunteers across the country has continued to broaden over the past year, allowing the number of student-employer encounters facilitated by Founders4Schools to pass the 100,000 – an achievement that we believe is truly worth celebrating.

Although this review is a celebration of achievements from our first year of operation as a charity, it is also an opportunity to thank all our supporters, teachers, business leaders and partners who form the integral pieces that, together, will solve the puzzle of youth employability. It is their support that has enabled Founders4Schools to be a leader in the global movement to inspire today’s youth for tomorrow’s world of work.

Looking ahead to next year, I hope to increase the number of student-employer encounters from last year by tenfold. With foundations firmly laid, a focused and talented team on board, and having secured sponsorship from both Barclays and the Careers & Enterprise Company, I’m confident we’ll get there.

Read the Annual Review