Founders4Schools Awards 2017

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We are delighted to celebrate the educators, business leaders and partners who have been pioneering new ways of preparing students for the future world of work with Founders4Schools. Congratulations to all of the nominees and winners.

Career Talk Champion

Career Talks allow students to hear from real-life business leaders who can demonstrate the relevance and connection of what is taught in the classroom with careers – because they are creating the jobs right now! They also allow students to gain an understanding of what different jobs actually entail, while bringing the curriculum to life. The goal is to equip students with the inspiration and information to make better informed decisions about their future career paths.

Kelly Davies | Witton Park High School, Blackburn Greater Manchester LEP

Kelly Davies from Witton Park High School in Blackburn organised two Career Talks with CEOs of fast growing companies in just one week, inspiring 400 students of different ages. The first encounter was organised for 12-13 year olds. Ian Appleton, CEO of Kerax Limited, visited the school to talk about his journey through his education and work at huge companies such as BP and Mobil, to eventually starting and owning his own company. Ms. Davies then organised Yasar Zaman to visit her school just two days later, this time to speak to 14-15 year olds. Mr. Zaman is CEO of the Empire Group UK, a fast-growing company specialising in supplying public services with professional translators. Empire Group is a fantastic example of a fast-growing company, as they first started providing services to organisations in North West England but have expanded their remit to the rest of the UK and now have an annual turnover of over £2 million.

Kathryn Loughnan | Avonbourne College, Bournemouth Dorset LEP

Kathryn Loughnan from Avonbourne College in Bournemouth has been committed to ensuring her students have encounters with local business leaders every single year. She has created Role Model encounters every July, starting in 2013, facilitating a total of 1,740 student-employer encounters. Avonbourne College is an all-girls school for students aged 11-16, and Ms. Loughnan has consistently ensured that her female students meet an equal balance of both male and female business leaders. The students have been particularly inspired by hugely successful female founders of businesses, such as Franziska Conrad, Founder of Inherently Good Design, and Michaele Keene, Founder of Sphere Information Technology Ltd. Moreover, Ms. Loughnan invests a lot of time in building working relationships with the business leaders who attend Avonbourne College, which means that many of them return the next year.

Shayne Davids | Carlton Primary School, London, London LEP

Shayne Davids from Carlton Primary School in London only joined the Founders4Schools community in March 2017 and has already organised five Role Model encounters! He has invited hugely successful male and female business leaders to talk to his Primary School Class, such as Andrew Lecocq, Co-Founder and CEO at Hillgate, and Narda Shirley, Founder and Managing Director of Gong Communications Ltd. Encounters such as these are hugely meaningful and inspirational for students aged 8-11, and we love the fact that Mr. Davids has recognised that students are never too young to start hearing about exciting pathways and careers that are possible after secondary school.

Simon Armitage | Director of Guidance, The Stephen Perse Foundation, Cambridge The Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough LEP

Simon Armitage has used our services regularly since 2015 to inspire the students of The Stephen Perse Foundation. Simon comes up with original and creative themes for his encounters and always makes a particular effort to ensure that each encounter has a specific focus to benefit his students. For example, he organised a Role Model encounter titled ‘Business is Variety!’ and invited business leaders from a wide range of innovative sectors, to highlight to his students that there is more to business than being a lawyer, doctor or accountant. He has also organised a number of encounters specifically for female students, to give them exposure to a wide a range of career paths. What is more, he often coincides his encounters with exciting, national campaigns such as British Science Week, and uses these as opportunities to invite local business leaders in to help students relate what they are learning in the classroom to the wider world of work.

WINNER Kathryn Loughnan | Avonbourne College, Bournemouth Dorset LEP

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WORKPLACE VISITS

The Gatsby Foundation ‘Good Career Guidance’ Report states that, by the age of 16, every pupil should have had at least one experience of the workplace. However, not all teachers are able to provide this experience to their students, often because of the amount of time and logistics it takes to arrange this type of encounter. This award acknowledges the educator and the business who understand the value and impact of workplace visits and came together to ensure that young people have an amazing experience of the work environment.

Jo Bishop | Head of Careers, City and Islington Sixth Form College, London, and Joshua Graff | UK Country Manager & VP EMEA, LinkedIn, London LEP

Ms. Bishop organised a Workplace Visit for a small group of ambitious A Level students in June 2017 to the LinkedIn Head Offices in London. The students were welcomed by Josh Graff, UK Country Manager & VP EMEA at LinkedIn and the visit was followed by a panel discussion with employees from across the business. Students heard about what it’s like to work at LinkedIn, the career history of each panel member and the skills the firm will be hiring for in the future. Following the panel discussion, the group were given the opportunity to ask questions and were then taken on a private, guided tour of the impressive offices. One student was quoted saying, “The LinkedIn offices are really fun and open and it seems like a great place to work. I was surprised by how they recruit people. They really want people’s personalities to come out during an interview, it’s not just based on their GCSEs.”

Sam McLoughlin | Business Engagement Manager, Studio West, Newcastle, and Catherine Boland | HR Manager, printed.com North East LEP

Sam McLoughlin, Business Engagement Manager at Studio West in Newcastle, and Catherine Boland, HR Manager at printed. com organised two workplace visits for a total of sixty 13–14 year olds within three days of each other! Mr. McLoughlin wanted his students to learn the required skills and characteristics needed to succeed in the workplace, with an extra emphasis on the importance of resilience. While Mr. McLoughlin has arranged a variety of encounters through Founders4Schools services for his students, in this case he decided that a visit to a real-life workplace would further engage and inspire his students. The students were warmly welcomed into the offices of printed.com, a creative and dynamic technology-driven environment, by Catherine Boland. printed.com has a strong ethos of giving back to their community and Ms Boland has developed a comprehensive work experience programme at printed.com, which engages with both teachers and students at regional schools, colleges and universities.

Dawn Woodcock | Principal, Tottenham University Technical College, London, and Michael Nabrano | CEO, Spektrix London LEP

Dawn Woodcock, Principal of Tottenham University Technical College in London, and Michael Nabrano, CEO of Spektrix organised a Workplace Visit for 10 Computer Science students. The visit was organised for students who expressed an interest in studying Computer Science at University, to give them a sense of what kind of work their degree might lead to. As a fast-growing tech start-up, which now has a turnover of over £3 million and employs 50 people across London, Manchester and New York, Spektrix was hugely inspirational to these Computer Science students and allowed them to experience the culture of a company in their chosen career field first-hand. It also helped them to decide whether Computer Science was the right industry for them and to get a better understanding of the career requirements of working for such an exciting, innovative company.

Michael Kent | Townley Grammar School, London, Steve Brown | Group Director, Empiric Solutions Ltd, and Kate Ancketill | CEO and Founder, GDR Creative Intelligence Ltd, London LEP

Michael Kent from Townley Grammar School in London organised two different workplace visits on the same day to give varied and insightful experiences to two groups of 15-18-year-old students. The first visit was organised alongside Steve Brown, Group Director at Empiric Solutions Ltd. Empiric Solutions are a global provider of recruitment services operating across a wide range of sectors. Therefore, they were able to offer the students of Townley Grammar School a unique insight and specialist knowledge into the skills required in different industries. The second Workplace Visit was organised with Kate Ancketill, CEO and Founder of GDR Creative Intelligence Ltd. A group of 15 students visited the impressive GDR Creative Intelligence headquarters in central London to learn first-hand from Kate about the work environment and culture of an exciting, start-up company.

WINNER Sam McLoughlin | Business Engagement Manager, Studio West, Newcastle, and Catherine Boland | HR Manager, printed.com, North East LEP

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SUPER USER

Our Super Users are widely renowned within the Founders4Schools community for using our services consistently and prolifically. They possess a strong understanding of the value and impact of careers education. Key findings about careers and enterprise programmes suggest that they can: improve young people’s ability to make career decisions and their optimism about the future; help young people to increase their attainment and be more likely to enrol in postsecondary education; reduce young people’s likelihood of becoming unemployed; and increase young people’s earnings after they complete their schooling. Our Super Users are well on their way to ensuring that the students at their schools are given every opportunity to succeed in the future.

Michael Halliday | UTC Reading Thames Valley Berkshire LEP

Michael Halliday from UTC Reading organised a number of successful, curriculum-focused encounters, specifically for students who were interested in pursuing careers in technology and computing. He used the Founders4Schools service to source business leaders from these industries and organised two innovative events: TechMentors and EngineerMentors. During each of these, students met at least five industry leaders and were able to ask many questions. Mr. Halliday then went on to create another original concept, ‘Interview Insights’. For this event, he invited senior business leaders to give a 45-minute talk to his students, specifically about what makes a good interview. According to Mr. Halliday, the students were excited and inspired, and did not stop asking questions! Mr. Halliday has also gone above and beyond to introduce teachers from other UTCs to the Founders4Schools service to ensure that as many students as possible benefit from engagement with local business leaders.

Paul Butterworth | West Hill School, Stalybridge Greater Manchester LEP

Paul Butterworth from West Hill School in Stalybridge has organised 16 student-employer encounters for his students! Mr. Butterworth creates meaningful, long-lasting connections with the business leaders who attend his school for the benefit of his students. For example, after organising a student employer encounter with Dave Wright from the Kier Group, Mr. Butterworth went above and beyond for his pupils and organised for some pupils to take part in two weeks’ work experience at Kier Group, which will continue next year. Mr. Butterworth also planned a programme from Year 8 through to Year 10 involving presentations and day visits, which was designed to encourage pupils to apply for apprenticeships. He also linked Kier Group with the engineering department at the local college, so that his pupils could study at the college and then apply for higher apprenticeships with Kier. This is a fantastic example of how one can use Founders4Schools to facilitate deeper, meaningful engagement between students and business leaders, and Mr. Butterworth is an inspiration to other educators using the service.

Wendy Breakell and Emilie Delavoix | Westminster Kingsway College, London, London LEP

Wendy Breakell and Emilie Delavoix from Westminster Kingsway College in London have worked together to create numerous student-employer encounters for their students. Between them, they have organised seven hugely successful career talks and one mock interview encounter. What’s more, they are very engaged with the Founders4Schools team, constantly providing feedback from encounters and willing to go above and beyond to help us improve our services. Their students also participated in a focus group for the Workfinder service and helped in some of the early stage development.

Carina Lindars | The Leigh UTC, Dartford South East LEP

Carina Lindars from The Leigh UTC has single-handedly facilitated 475 student-employer encounters since 2015 which far exceeds the national average of 289 per school! Ms. Lindars has made it a priority to provide each student with three employer encounters in 2016 and four in 2015, which is one of our highest records ever. These encounters have been part of a motivational ‘Route to Success’ week, which is organised to provide them with more information on a wide range of STEM careers available through Apprenticeships, University or workplaces. Ms. Lindars is clearly well aware of the research which shows that four student-employer encounters help to make young people more prepared for the world of work. The students at The Leigh UTC are well on their way to being employable

WINNER Carina Lindars | The Leigh UTC, Dartford South East LEP

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INNOVATOR OF THE YEAR

Founders4Schools is proud to be associated with such a talented and innovative community of business leaders, educators, and partners. We have designed our services in collaboration with each of these stakeholders and we are committed to finding new ways to evolve, in order to have the most impact on young people. Over the past year, there have been significant changes to our services and many of these have been inspired directly by our users. This award acknowledges and celebrates the stand-outs within our community that continue to help us think outside the box and as a result, are positively contributing to addressing the skills gap in new ways.

Nick Cheese | School Coordinator, Greenwood Academy, Birmingham, Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP

After using the Founders4Schools service for the first time in September 2016, Nick Cheese, School Coordinator at the Greenwood Academy in Birmingham, had some fantastic recommendations for major changes to the service. Mr. Cheese wanted to bring business leaders to speak to students about ways in which they can be successful in their future transitions and he invited four business leaders into the school to inspire 150 Year 9 students. Whilst the event was a huge success, Mr. Cheese recognised that there was no separation in the user journey between teachers and career coordinators. He took it upon himself to produce a fantastic video spec for Founders4Schools, outlining how we should—and could – incorporate a career coordinator journey into our service. This has been hugely beneficial for the Founders4Schools team and thanks to Mr. Cheese, there are now exciting plans in the pipeline to incorporate this feedback and create a separate user journey, specific to career coordinators.

Villiers Park Educational Trust

Founders4Schools is excited to be working closely with Villiers Park Educational Trust, specifically through their INVOLVE initiative. The Scholars Programme was created to tackle the problem of substantial underachievement by many able young people from less advantaged backgrounds and INVOLVE is designed to enhance everyday classroom learning by empowering students to lead on enriching the learning communities in their schools and colleges. This new partnership will enable Scholars in the INVOLVE initiative to be able to use the Founders4Schools service to facilitate meaningful encounters with business leaders on behalf of their teacher, school, and fellow classmates. Villiers Park is being innovative in how they use the services and has inspired Founders4Schools to develop a specific student user journey that will enable more students throughout the UK to be able to set-up career events on behalf of their school!

Stirling Council, Scotland

Stirling Council has been innovative in their system-wide approach in adopting Founders4Schools as the educational initiative that will help drive the Council’s priorities to make their young people more employable. Founders4Schools is new in Scotland but Stewart Carruth, the Chief Executive of Stirling Council, had the entrepreneurial spirit to see how this service can make a profound impact on the community. Mr. Carruth committed that Stirling will lead the way with the most student-employer encounters than any other council in Scotland. Mr. Carruth also extended a personal invitation to his network encouraging businesses to volunteer through the platform. As a result of the Council’s endorsement, a workshop was held with over 20 of their local educators including headteachers from primary and secondary schools. With the further support of Kevin Kelman, Chief Education Officer of Stirling Council, Stirling is well on their way to leading in Scotland with the most studentemployer encounters per 1000 students in just a few short months.

WINNER Nick Cheese | School Coordinator, Greenwood Academy, Birmingham, Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP

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NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR

We want to celebrate the new members of our community who have already, in just a very short time period, organised a number of opportunities for their students to engage with local businesses. Professor Anthony Mann’s research with Education and Employers Taskforce found that four encounters with business leaders will significantly impact a young person’s life, decreasing their likelihood of being NEET (Not in Education, Employment, or Training) by 86%. Therefore, these newcomers are well on their way of better preparing their students for their future career paths.

Gemma Jackson | Leicester College Leicester and Leicestershire LEP

Gemma Jackson, Employability & Enterprise Manager at Leicester College, joined the Founders4Schools community in February and it didn’t take her long to begin creating encounters. The students at her college engaged with employers in April, May and June! First, Ms. Jackson organised a Careers Talk, during which Charmaine Roche, Director of Nottingham Coaching Centre & Services Ltd, spoke to the students about tomorrow’s jobs and how they relate to subjects students are currently studying. Ms. Jackson then organised a Careers Fair so that her students could engage with employers from fast growing businesses in the local community. Finally, Ms. Jackson hosted a Speed Mentoring encounter and invited business leaders specifically with a background in STEAM to inspire her students about careers in this field. If Ms. Jackson has done all of this in just a few short months, we look forward to seeing the total number of encounters per student increasing in the future, which means these students will definitely be prepared for the world of work.

Julie Lee | St Anne’s Catholic High School for Girls, London London LEP

Julie Lee from St Anne’s Catholic High School for Girls in London, joined the Founders4Schools community in May and has already started to embed student-employer encounters into the curriculum for next academic year, organising three encounters in September and October. Ms. Lee is planning to engage her students at the beginning of the academic year with a Workplace Visit, and has also invited local business leaders into the school for Careers Fairs in October. Providing young people with a variety of encounters allows them to interact with the world of work in different ways to ensure a richer, more in-depth experience. This is a fantastic way to kick start the new school year to ensure that her students are focused on their current studies and gain insights into future career pathways which is critical to their success!

Philip Cunningham | Buckingham School Buckinghamshire Thames Valley LEP

Philip Cunningham, the Vocational/Careers Curriculum Manager at Buckingham School in Buckingham joined the Founders4Schools community in January and has already created three curriculumspecific careers encounters for his students. He invited business leaders with particular curriculum expertise to speak about how the subjects students are currently learning in the classroom can lead to a variety of exciting careers. Mr. Cunningham organised two mathsfocused encounters and one science-focused encounters, highlighting his commitment to engaging students in the STEM field and addressing common misconceptions surrounding these subjects.

Jamie Forrest | Beechen Cliff School, Bath West of England LEP

Jamie Forrest, Head of Careers Education at Beechen Cliff School in Bath, joined the Founders4Schools Community in April this year and has made fantastic progress in creating encounters for the new academic year. He has created three different types of encounter to engage his pupils and facilitate interactions with business leaders in their local area. Jamie has organised a Careers talk with the Managing Director of Hybrid News Ltd, as well as a Keynote Career Speech for the whole school’s morning assembly with two highly successful business leaders, the Director of Mint Digital Ltd and the CEO of M2 Communications Ltd. A Careers Fair is also scheduled in October with various local businesses that will enable the students to gather information about different industries, jobs, apprenticeships and future pathways available to them when they leave school. Mr. Forrest is starting the school year sending a strong message about the value of careers educator and the importance of connecting young people with local businesses.

WINNER Gemma Jackson | Leicester College Leicester and Leicestershire LEP

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COMMITMENT TO DIVERSITY

ASPIRES research highlighted that children without familial capital frequently see a very narrow range of jobs and describe careers such as those in STEM to be the sole preserve of those with high exam results, or male and middle-class. The research also suggests that access to positive role models from a similar background at school holds strong potential for breaking long held societal attitudes around the types of career appropriate for girls, women and people from underrepresented backgrounds and communities. Therefore, it is critical that young people get exposure to diverse and inspiring role models that can help shape our future workforce. This award celebrates educators who are working hard to make an impact in the area of diversity.

Kayleigh Liddel | HE Curriculum Coordinator, Active Learning and Reading College, Thames Valley Berkshire LEP

To celebrate International Women’s Day, Ms. Kayleigh Liddel held a networking encounter and inspirational talk at Reading College, joined by female pupils from John Madejski Academy and Reading Girls School. The event was titled: ‘Be Bold For Change— Recruiting women into STEM’ which incorporated the 2017 theme for international women’s day, creating a common call to action that connected these young women to women throughout the rest of world. Ms. Liddel invited Harriet Kirk, a senior consultant from Sage, to share her experience in conversation and to inspire careers in STEM. 100 female students aged 14-18 heard from Ms. Kirk about how Sage has energised the success of businesses and communities around the world through smart technology, and where a career in technology can lead.

Samantha Millichap | Birmingham Independent College, Birmingham, Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP

Sam Millichap created a Careers Talk for the students of Birmingham Independent College, an alternative provision for newly arrived teenagers who are, for various reasons, out of the mainstream education system. These students face many difficult situations in their lives including homelessness, living in the UK without any family, and not speaking the language. They are all trying to make a new life for themselves. Ms. Millichap is determined to make these young people productive and happy members of the UK who understand that effort is always rewarded. One way of working toward this goal was for these students to meet and hear from business leaders who may have faced their own challenges, yet through hard work and perseverance, they have gone on to lead successful lives. Therefore, Ms.Millichap went above and beyond to organise an encounter where her students could meet business people who have come from other countries, to share their personal and professional journeys and provide real inspiration.

Sefika Mehmet | Kelmscott School, London London LEP

Sefika Mehmet from Kelmscott School in London organised a Speed Mentoring encounter titled ‘Professional Women’s Day’ to demonstrate the scope of opportunities available to her female students. The day was designed to encourage female students to aspire to professional careers, by meeting successful women from different industries and organisations. 75 female students aged 14 to 16 years old had the opportunity to engage with two hugely inspiring women: Aga Gajownik, Founder of Innovation and Integration Ltd, and Julie Walter, Founder and Managing Director of Raremark. These women are not only both extremely driven and determined entrepreneurs, they have also built businesses with a combined turnover of over £3 million. The pupils of Kelmscott School had the unique opportunity to ask these business leaders questions about the paths they took, the qualifications they needed and the skills they required to build their careers.

Sue Higgins | Parliament Hill School, London London LEP

Sue Higgins from Parliament Hill School in London invited an influential and highly successful business leader to give a Keynote Careers Speech to her students on International Women’s Day. 50 students, aged 15 years old, met Louise Proddow, entrepreneur, strategist, author and founder of Tweak brand and marketing agency. Ms. Proddow has been responsible for creating and shaping global brands, marketing and digital strategies for some of the world’s top technology brands. Not only this, she also volunteers as a Digital Communications Strategist for UN Women UK, connecting communications and digital across all aspects of UN Women activities in the UK to drive engagement opportunities. It was hugely empowering for the students of Parliament Hill School to hear Ms. Proddow’s unique stories and certainly left them feeling inspired about what they could achieve in the future.

WINNER Samantha Millichap | Birmingham Independent College, Birmingham, Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP

STEM IMPACT AWARD: EMPOWERING FUTURE SCIENTISTS

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In honour of the Francis Crick Institute hosting the Educator and Enterprise Awards, it is important to acknowledge the educators who are helping to prepare their students for employment in STEM related jobs. ASPIRES research highlights that STEM engagement falls in young women from 72% at age 10 to 19% at age 18, and for young men STEM engagement falls from 75% at age 10 to 33% by age 18. This is a staggering statistic given that the number of jobs in STEM will grow at double the rate of other careers according to a report by the Social Market Foundation and EDF; researchers estimate that a total of 640,000 STEM jobs will need to be filled over the next six years. Communities as a whole have a commitment to help young people see the value pursuing STEM careers, and this award acknowledges the educators who are making this a priority.

Nevita Pandya | Townley Grammar School, London London LEP

Nevita Pandya has organised two very successful STEM-focused encounters through Founders4Schools, called ‘The Magic of STEM!’ Ms. Pandya invited a wide range of industry experts to inspire her students, including former government minister and current Chief Education Advisor at TES Global, Jim Knight. Lord Knight spoke about his experience in using digital technology in delivering public services alongside the Technology Strategist and Innovator from Kurtosys System Limited, Harry Thompson. The students benefitted from hearing from a diverse range of business leaders with varying insights and experiences to share in the STEM field.

Cerian Lye-Owens | Lydiard Park Academy, Swindon The Swindon and Wiltshire LEP

Cerian Lye-Owens from Lydiard Park Academy organised a ‘STEM Careers Day’ for fifty 13 year olds, and invited Paul Norbury, Founder and CEO of Cardwave Services Ltd. As a STEM specialist, Mr. Norbury provided a Keynote Speech about careers in STEM. Mr Norbury is very passionate about technology, and widely regarded as a thought-leader in the technology industry. He has continually evolved Cardware Services Ltd to stay at the forefront of the industry, and it is now a global, multi-award winning company. The students of Lydiard Park Academy had a unique opportunity to engage directly with Mr. Norbury, a real industry expert, and ask many questions about his impressive career journey and where STEM subjects can take them in the future.

Martin Macmillan | McLaren High School, Callander Stirling Council, Scotland

Martin Macmillan from McLaren High School in Callander has encouraged his students to work on Computing/STEM based projects, such as building weather stations and developing mobile phone apps. He used Founders4Schools to invite David Frame, the Group Managing Director of B&D Group Ltd, a specialist in STEM, into McLaren High School to endorse the importance of their projects. Mr. Macmillan has also booked another encounter for September, so that more business leaders working in STEM-related fields can share details with students about their experiences in school, their journey to where they are now and the skills and qualities they would be looking for if they were to hire a school leaver. This is intended to inspire the pupils working on their STEM projects and offer a variety of perspectives of potential future careers.

Charlotte O’Neil | Isleworth Town Primary School London LEP

Charlotte O’Neil from Isleworth Town Primary School organised a STEM Week this year for her 10 and 11-year-old pupils, during which she organised a number of workshops for children to take part in. Ms. O’Neil invited Fiona Rutherford, Senior Consultant at Watson Millican and Co, Elizabeth Hatt, Director of Acquisition at Dell, and Mitch Goldmand, E-Commerce product owner and project manager at Made.Com Design Ltd into Isleworth Town Primary School to help raise aspiration and awareness of the high impact careers that students can pursue in STEM. She was keen for her students to gain an understanding of the unique skills and roles that are needed in today’s economy. Ms. O’Neil is paving the way in inspiring children into STEM from a young age.

WINNER Martin Macmillan | McLaren High School, Callander Stirling Council, Scotland

PARTNER OF THE YEAR

Founders4Schools has been able to reach 80,000 young people to date, largely due to the support and collaboration of the amazing partners that we work with throughout England and Scotland. In order to make a profound impact on the skills gap, it is vital that Founders4Schools works collaboratively within the ecosystem.

Allison Giles | Enterprise Coordinator, Thames Valley Berkshire Founders4Schools has been grateful to work with Enterprise Coordinators and the Enterprise Advisor Network with The Careers & Enterprise Company (CEC) throughout England. We would like to highlight the partnership specifically with Allison Giles, Enterprise Coordinator with Thames Valley Berkshire as Ms. Giles has gone above and beyond to help schools understand the value behind Founders4Schools and the services we offer to benefit young people, inviting us to present and engage with the local schools on many occasions. Ms. Giles and her network of Enterprise Advisors are currently working with 27 schools and colleges across Thames Valley Berkshire, helping senior leadership teams to create lasting employer engagement relationships and enterprise plans. Largely due to the support from Ms. Giles and her colleagues in spreading the word about Founders4Schools, Thames Valley Berkshire is now in the top 5 LEPs for the most student-employer encounters per 1000 students.

Lorraine Lawson | Brokerage Manager for Education, Camden Council

Lorraine Lawson, the Brokerage Manager for Education in Camden, has been an incredible partner to work closely with over the past year. Ms. Lawson’s efforts have driven Camden to be the number one Local Authority throughout the UK, leading the way in student employer encounters at 13,562. A total of 51 events have taken place, connecting students with 124 local business leaders. Ms. Lawson also helped to identify schools to participate in the pilot stage of Workfinder and has devoted a great deal of her time to work with us along the way. We are beyond grateful for her support in providing meaningful insights and critical feedback throughout the pilot stage for Workfinder as well as for encouraging more teachers to engage with business leaders through a wide range of encounters; this level of support has been instrumental in ensuring that Founders4Schools and Workfinder are better positioned to meet the needs of young people, businesses, and schools.

Ark

Founders4Schools is excited to be working closely with Ark schools throughout England. To date, seven Ark academies have used Founders4Schools services, facilitating a total of 895 studentemployer encounters. We have had the privilege to work closely with Chloe Holmes, Professional Pathways Programme Manager. Ms. Holmes has embedded the Founders4Schools service into Ark’s Professional Pathways Programme, which provides a high quality alternative route for students who are not pursuing A Level qualifications. Ms. Holmes introduced Founders4Schools to all of the Professional Pathways teachers, encouraging and empowering these educators to invite speakers into their classrooms to enhance the curriculum programme they were using. These educators were given the task of using Founders4Schools to facilitate at least two encounters throughout the school year; as a result, these students will be better prepared to make informed decisions about their future career paths.

Imperial College

Founders4Schools has had the privilege of hosting two Computer Science students as interns thanks to our partnership with Imperial College Data Science Institute. The interns have been focused on improving the personalised guidance embedded in our subscriber service for educators which ensures that educators benefit from all the latest research in career advice so that their students get the right combination of encounters with the right employers at the right time. Their initial projects have been focused on the Creative Industries sector as it is one of the fastest growing sectors in the UK economy.

WINNER Allison Giles | Enterprise Coordinator, Thames Valley Berkshire

Allison Giles

LOCAL GOVERNMENT PARTNER OF THE YEAR

Local government is a key stakeholder in helping shape the education and skills agenda in each community. We recognise and respect the role councils play in preparing young people for the world of work and Founders4Schools would not be able to have the impact that we have to date without their support and endorsement.

Camden Council, London

Camden Council has long supported Founders4Schools and leads the way as the Local Authority with the highest number of studentemployer encounters per 1000 students at 749 as of the 1st August. A total of 51 encounters have taken place, connecting with 124 local business leaders. Seven of the schools also participated in the Workfinder pilot programme and were instrumental in providing insights into the development of the service. We had the privilege of working closely with Lorraine Lawson, the Brokerage Manager for Education who invited us to engage with headteachers, heads of 6th Form, and career advisors. The Camden STEAM Commission published their Commission Report in June 2017 highlighting recommendations for providing young people in the borough with the skills and opportunities to thrive and we were thrilled to find both Workfinder and Founders4Schools referenced in it. Much of the impact that was made in Camden was due to the high value this local authority places on connecting education and business.

Stirling Council, Scotland

Stirling Council has adopted Founders4Schools as the educational initiative that will help drive the Council’s priorities to make their young people more employable. Founders4Schools is new in Scotland, but Stewart Carruth the Chief Executive of Stirling Council had the entrepreneurial spirit to see how this service and the data insights can make a profound impact on the community. Mr. Carruth committed that Stirling will lead the way with the most studentemployer encounters than any other council in Scotland. Mr. Carruth also extended a personal invitation to his network encouraging businesses to volunteer through the platform. As a result of the Council’s endorsement, a workshop was held with over 20 of their local educators including headteachers from primary and secondary schools. With the further support of Kevin Kelman, Chief Education Officer of Stirling Council, Stirling is well on their way of leading in Scotland with the most student-employer encounters per 1000 students in just a few short months.

Newcastle and North East LEP

The North East community, and specifically Newcastle, have become a strong advocate for Founders4Schools. The community came together to create The Pathways to Industry Event in May 2017 that connected educators and business leaders, along with representatives from the LEP. Founders4Schools was promoted at the event as the recommended digital platform. While there have been schools using our service in the community before this event, we have seen an increase in the number of schools that have used the service in just the past few months with a total of 13 teachers and 4,555 total student-employer encounters. This recent progress is profound. The community remains committed to Founders4Schools and will be hosting another event in the autumn to highlight the work of the educators and business leaders.

WINNER Camden Council, London

Lorraine Lawson

AMBASSADOR OF THE YEAR & INSPIRATION OF THE YEAR

These awards recognise the business leaders who stand out for their commitment to addressing the skills gap and their support of Founders4Schools. The Ambassador of the Year Award celebrates the business leader who has acted as an advocate to increase the skills in their local communities. The Inspiration of the Year Award highlights an amazing business leader who has shown a steadfast commitment to inspiring young people, repeatedly volunteering their time to share insights and expertise.

Stewart Carruth | Chief Executive, Stirling Council, Scotland

Stewart Carruth is the Chief Executive of Stirling Council in Scotland. Mr. Carruth has endorsed Founders4Schools and wants all schools within Stirling Local Authority to use Founders4Schools. Not only has Mr. Carruth sent a strong call to action to all of his educators, he has been an advocate on behalf of Founders4Schools to the business community as well. Mr. Carruth extended a personal invitation to his network of over 1,000 business leaders to volunteer through the platform. With this level of support, the amount of impact on the young people within the Stirling community will be profound. The local authority already leads the way in Scotland with the most student-employer encounters!

Tony Greig | CEO, Legrand Electric, Birmingham Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP

Tony Greig is the CEO at Legrand Electric, the global specialist in electrical and digital building infrastructures. He has accepted 14 invitations to a range of different student-employer encounters at 10 different schools and has consistently spoken every year since 2015— in fact, he has never turned down an invite! Teachers always feedback on his ability to inspire pupils with his fascinating career journey around the world with possessing intensive global experience. He has even been known to attend more than one encounter a week, demonstrating his unrelenting commitment to inspiring the future generation.

Chris Windley | Head of Business Development, Spectrum Telecoms in London London LEP

Chris Windley is Head of Business Development at Spectrum Telecom, an independent business connectivity provider in Burton on Trent. Mr. Windley joined the Founders4Schools community as a volunteer in 2017 and he has already spoken at 10 events! Mr Windley is always keen to share his anecdotes after each encounter, which is fantastic to hear. He recently emailed to tell us about an encounter he attended which genuinely moved him, as he was presenting to children from low income backgrounds on pupil premium. Mr. Windley demonstrates a real sense of responsibility and pride in his role as a speaker. Mr. Windley also offers interesting and insightful feedback on how we can improve our services, which is hugely beneficial as we continue to grow and develop.

Paul Jundu | Owner and Director, Onboard Corrugated Ltd, Birmingham, Birmingham and Solihull LEP

Paul Jundu, Owner and Director of Onboard Corrugated Ltd., has consistently spoken every year since 2014, on fourteen different occasions! Moreover, he goes above and beyond for teachers to ensure that their events are a success. Recently, he agreed to attend a school one hour earlier than scheduled, to participate in an additional session with gifted and talented pupils. Mr. Jundu is wholly committed to his role in inspiring the future generation and making a difference to young people in his local area.

Paul Jundu

babylon

babylon is a hot tech scale-up that is on a mission to transform the healthcare experience for everyone worldwide. Simon Kelly is the Chief Sales Officer at babylon and has been a strong ambassador for Founders4Schools since the beginning; when he introduced Founders4Schools to babylon and the Chief Executive, Ali Parsa, there was immediate synergy. The values, ethos, and innovation at babylon make it the perfect scale-up to be able to inspire young people about exciting jobs of the future and three very lucky young people from Camden got to experience this firsthand this summer. babylon hosted three students for work experience placements through Workfinder and provided them with an incredibly meaningful and exciting experience. Founders4Schools is grateful to be able to work with a scale-up like babylon that is committed to helping young people develop the skills they need to be successful in the world of work.

WINNERS Ambassador: Stewart Carruth | Chief Executive, Stirling Council, Scotland Inspiration: Paul Jundu | Owner and Director, Onboard Corrugated Ltd, Birmingham, Birmingham and Solihull LEP

Stuart Caruth

Experience Works, the Founders4Schools introduction to Workfinder

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Workfinder Twitter Quotographs[1]

I’m delighted to share Experience Works, our introduction to Workfinder – a new platform from the team at Founders4Schools.

We were inspired to create Workfinder having observed an issue in the skills market. Businesses need school leavers and graduates to have basic workplace skills so they can hit the ground running when they start their careers.

To develop these skills, young people need regular contact with the working world. An obvious answer to this is work experience. But we’ve found that the current model is broken and the percentage of young people accessing quality placements is dismally low.

Workfinder Twitter Quotographs4[2]

We were aware of this challenge but we were further spurred on to create a solution by a work experience student of our own. Maitri Panchal spent some time with us at Founders4Schools and suggested that there should be an app to rate placements. This was a light bulb moment for us.

We decided not only to create a service to rate placements, but to discover them as well. By harnessing our network, we’ve been able to build a platform to connect the UK’s most ambitious young people with quality, exciting placements at great companies across the country.

We’ve been trialling the service over the past eight months and now we’re ready to launch it to the business world and encourage great companies in every corner of the UK to sign up and offer placements.

We see this as essential. Not only can we inspire the next generation. We can give great, growing companies access to a pipeline of tomorrow’s talent.

Workfinder Twitter Quotographs3[3]

I know there are thousands of brilliant scale-ups across the UK, I’ve met many of you. I’d be thrilled if you could get involved, tell your network about Workfinder and start using the platform today. Read more about our story, our mission and how to get involved by downloading Experience Works now.

DOWNLOAD EXPERIENCE WORKS

We’re excited to announce the launch of Experience Works, a publication from Workfinder – our new platform to connect young people with opportunities in great, local companies.

Workfinder is our answer to a serious skills problem. Businesses are crying out for talent and saying they value work experience over qualifications. But only a small percentage of young people actually access quality work experience.

We’ve created a tech-enabled solution, which helps the next generation to discover great local companies and find meaningful work experience opportunities. We’re hoping this will not only inspire young people but give ambitious, growing companies access to a pipeline of tomorrow’s talent.

Workfinder Twitter Quotographs2[2]

Experience Works is a call-to-action for these businesses to sign up and start offering placements today. In it we have captured our mission and spoken to some of our supporters and early adopters:

“All too often though the quality of a pupil’s work experience placement is determined almost entirely by the calibre of their parents’ professional network,” writes Sarah Wood OBE, co-founder of Unruly. “Workfinder levels the playing field. It creates easily accessible, exciting work experience opportunities for pupils, regardless of their background.”

“This is a powerful tool,” writes Carolyn Fairbairn. “Our main concern over the past few years has not been unwillingness amongst businesses to offer work experience, nor a lack of interest amongst young people. Rather, a lot of positive developments had been confined to individual companies or schools, when we need to ensure that high quality work experience is available to all young people. Workfinder provides the opportunity to make these positive changes systemic.”

Download Experience Works now. If you want to get involved, sign up today and start inspiring the next generation: SIGN UP NOW

2017/18 Careers Calendar To Boost Student Employability

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Founders4Schools’ mission is to improve society by increasing youth employability. To do this, we want to ensure that every young person has access to at least four encounters with employers each year.

 

To make this easier for you in the upcoming academic year, here is our simple Careers Calendar 2017/18 to guide you. This outlines significant national and international events for your diary and suggests creative ways you can bring these to life in your classroom by involving local business leaders. You can download a PDF version here.

Date Event Inspire your students
11th October Ada Lovelace Day Born in 1815, Ada Lovelace is widely regarded as the first computer programmer. Celebrate women in STEM, inspire your students and and honour Ada Lovelace day, by inviting a female business leader working in a STEM industry into your school. INVITE BUSINESS LEADERS >
13th – 19th November Global Entrepreneurship Week During the world’s largest festival of entrepreneurship, invite a Founder of a fast-growing start up company into the classroom to inspire your students with their entrepreneurial success story, or hold a Group Mentoring session so that students have a chance to ask Business Leaders meaningful questions about their experiences. INVITE BUSINESS LEADERS >
5th – 11th December Computer Science Education Week Inspire your students to try computer science by inviting a Business Leader from an IT, Computer Software or Gaming company, to inspire students about the endless possibilities that come with studying computer science. Alternatively, organise a Workplace Visit to an exciting start-up company, so that students can meet a range of different employees working in the computing field. INVITE BUSINESS LEADERS >
1st – 18th February National Apprenticeship Week During National Apprenticeship Week, you can organise career talks with Business Leaders who will speak about the importance of gaining apprenticeships and work experience. A meaningful careers talk will help your students understand the links between apprenticeships, skills and the pathways they open up. INVITE BUSINESS LEADERS >
5th – 10th March National Careers Week To celebrate National Careers Week, help prepare your students for the world of work by organising Mock Interviews with motivational Business Leaders, to help them think about their future career and develop the skills needed to enter the world of work. You could also organise a Careers Fair to showcase local businesses to students and give them the opportunity to ask questions. INVITE BUSINESS LEADERS >
8th March International Women’s Day To honour International Women’s Day, inspire your students by inviting a panel of inspirational, successful female business leaders into your school. They can speak about their own career journey, what their job entails and why it is important, and their own personal successes and failures. INVITE BUSINESS LEADERS >
10th – 19th March British Science Week To celebrate British Science Week, invite a Business Leader who works in a scientific field to inspire your students and link what they are learning about to the world of work. You could also organise a Workplace Visit to a company in the STEM field, anything from a healthcare company to a car manufacturing plant! INVITE BUSINESS LEADERS >
14th – 20th March World Maths Week To celebrate World Maths Week, show your students where the study of Maths can take them by inviting an inspiring Business Leader with a specialism in Maths into the classroom to talk about their own career journey and how the study of Maths links to what they do now. You could also organise a Speed Mentoring encounter to allow students to ask quick-fire questions about working in a Maths field. INVITE BUSINESS LEADERS >

Download a PDF of the Founders4Schools Career Calendar 2017/18. You can print it out to share with colleagues or refer to it throughout the year.

Why not get started now and book these encounters in advance here, then leave us to do the rest!

Here’s to a great year!

Your founders4schools team

Latest FEA report reveals both progress and decline in the opportunity gap

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Today the Fair Education Alliance released their Report Card 2016/17, revealing that the attainment gap in primary literacy and numeracy has narrowed significantly in the past half dozen years, and there has also been some progress in GCSE average grades and in work-based training. But children from low income families are still more than four times more likely than others to be permanently excluded from school, and the gap in university entry has actually widened a little for the first time since 2010.

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This reinforces the importance of our work at founders4schools. By creating meaningful encounters between pupils and business people, we greatly increase youth employability and close the skills gap. We prioritise the most disadvantaged areas in the UK where pupils are getting the fewest encounters with employers. Additionally, our soon-to-launch work experience service Workfinder will level the playing field by giving all students access to work placements at high growth companies nearby. This will do away with the current system in which placements are enabled by parents, meaning those from disadvantaged backgrounds often miss out.

 GET THE FEA REPORT CARD 2016/17

About The Fair Education Alliance

The Fair Education Alliance is working towards a world where our education system is fair – where children’s educational success is not limited by their socio-economic background. This is a world where disadvantage no longer determines literacy and numeracy rates at primary school, GCSE attainment at secondary school, the emotional wellbeing and resilience of young people, participation in further education or employment-based training and university graduation.

7 Tips To Implement A FREE Impactful Careers Programme In 20 Minutes

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EventPicLandscape

Are you lacking the time and resource to organise an impactful careers programme to inspire your students and improve their employability? Follow these 7 simple steps based on the Gatsby Foundation’s Good Career Guidance Benchmarks to organise your annual careers programme in just 20 minutes – and it’s free!

  1. Plan one event per half term. Research by Professor Anthony Mann at Education & Employers Taskforce proves that students with four employer encounters are 86% less likely to become NEET. Additionally, student confidence increases significantly following four encounters and annual salaries can go up by £2,500 by the time students are aged 19-231. Founders4Schools allows you to organise unlimited events over the academic year for free.
  2. Choose a variety of event types.Research proves that students who participate in a wide range of careers events are more confident and more employable following school2. To make it easy for you, we have listed below a variety of events to arrange for your students throughout the year for the greatest impact. Events are designed to fit into the school day at timings that suit you.
  3. Start the year with school speakers. Fire your students’ imaginations at the beginning of the year by introducing them to local business leaders, who will share their success stories. Whether they are the CEO of a large corporation, an entrepreneur who went out on a limb or an entry level Manager in a high growth company, students benefit greatly from hearing life lessons from leaders. Create free school speaker event.
  4. Meet local SMEs with a careers fair. Careers fairs are the perfect way for students to meet a wide range of local employers, however they can be time consuming to arrange. With Founders4Schools you can simply complete a form outlining the basic details your careers fair and we will do everything else for you, ensuring you have a good range of companies that are growing and hiring. Create free careers fair.
  5. Group mentoring for more personal experience. Divide your students into three small groups and have business leaders rotate each group, answering students’ questions. This is an excellent way for students to get both varied and personalised insight. Create free group mentoring event.
  6. Visit a local workplace for high impact. Get behind the scenes and experience the workplace environment at first hand with a workplace visit. Students can speak to employers  in their own environment, test out their skills and gain a sense of whether a career path is right for them. This is an excellent thing to do before the summer holidays. Create free workplace visit.
  7. (Coming Soon!) Get work experience in just a few taps. With the Workfinder app students can find their own work experience placements at high growth local companies. Students can discover opportunities nearby, apply for roles and secure placements in a few taps! Get Workfinder.

If you need help creating your annual careers programme feel free to give Founders4Schools a call on 020 3868 2885 and Alice Oakley, our friendly Community Manager will be happy to help you! CREATE FREE EVENTS.

Or visit www.founders4schools.org.uk to find out more.

 

1Professor Anthony Mann, Education & Employers Taskforce

2Professor Anthony Mann, Education & Employers Taskforce

Women-led businesses are ‘driving force’ of UK economy

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New analysis – based on open-government and LinkedIn data-sets – reveals how companies led by women grow, perform and rank – identifying the fastest-growing and most dynamic women-led business across the UK. To see the full report please click the link below:

Founders4Schools Inspirational Women Report 2017

Partner Newsletter January 2016

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It is a pleasure to highlight some of the great work that our partners have been doing with Founders4Schools and to celebrate the collective efforts of our ecosystem, working together to address the employability of young people throughout the UK.

Launch of Workfinder Pilot Programme

We are delighted to announce the launch of Workfinder in schools in London, Cambridge and Manchester.  Workfinder is a work experience service helping students find work placements at Britain’s best companies in a few taps. Most students find valuable work experience through their parents, putting those who are deprived at a disadvantage.  We are ‘flipping the mode’ to make it super quick and easy for students to find work experience placements at fast growing companies before asking their parents or teachers for final signoff!  Similar to real life, except we are there with helpful suggestions and pointers along the way.

Many of you will know that we’ve been working on this intensively for the past two years (since August 2014) and Workfinder is the result of hundreds of consultations with business leaders, students, teachers, career coordinators and business leaders like yourself.  We are hugely grateful for the time, money and brains of everyone who helped us get here – special mentions go to the  Chelsea Apps Factory, the Worshipful Company of Information Technologists, Hugh Campbell from GP Bullhound, Lorraine Lawson along with the Camden and Cambridge teacher, student and business communities and the Behavioural Insights Team from the Cabinet Office.

Other partner organisations we are co-delivering this alongside include the Federation of Small Business, the CBI, TeachFirst, Prince’s Trust, Young Enterprise, Form the Future, Transformation Trust, WorldSkills UK, and Villiers Park Educational Trust. They have expressed support of Workfinder and will help introduce us to schools within their networks throughout the UK.

This gives us a nice start for the pilot, though we would have liked to have been able to include more schools in each of the areas.  We are seeking additional donations so we might be able to widen the net and get more students into meaningful work experience placements. Let us know if you can help, recommend someone we should speak to, or just go to our home page and make a donation!

Lastly, a big thank you is extended to those who came to BETT 2017 on 25th January and supported the launch of Workfinder. An extra special acknowledgement to Adobe for hosting us at their booth and allowing us to provide a demo to guests.

Trainings and Workshops

On 14th December, TeachFirst hosted a workshop in the Isle of Wight, inviting local teachers to learn more about Founders4Schools services. It is always a pleasure to work closely with TeachFirst to provide teacher training.  The event was made possible due to Barclay’s generosity in opening its doors to host the event in Newport.

On 6th December, North East LEP invited Founders4Schools to meet with local business leaders and prominent educators to discuss ways to address the Scale-Up gap and the Skills gap, both of which impact the future growth in the UK. There was an enthusiastic response to the call to action, and the North East has continued to include Founders4Schools in discussions on ways the local communities can improve the employability of young people.

Teesside University invited us to join an active community of business leaders and business support representatives to discuss the challenges of scaling businesses in the region, and in turn increase youth employability.

Launch in Scotland

With the support of Sir Tom Hunter and the Hunter Foundation, along with the partnership with Skills Development Scotland (SDS) and Developing Young Workforce (DYW) with the Scottish Government, young people in Scotland will directly benefit from increased opportunities to have meaningful engagements with business leaders.  Founders4Schools was in Scotland in December to meet with SDS and DYW in preparation for the official launch in February.  Teachers will have access to a white label version of Founders4Schools platform through the My World of Work portal.

Our Frequent flier ‘shout-outs’…

Congratulations to teachers in Buckinghamshire Thames Valley LEP, Thames Valley Berkshire LEP, and Oxfordshire LEP  who have been setting up a storm of student-employer encounters for their students in the past three months!  We look forward to hearing how they go!

Congratulations to Dorset LEP, Oxfordshire LEP and Buckinghamshire Thames Valley LEP with the highest average Student-Employer Encounters per Teacher in the last three months – an inspiration to teachers everywhere to know that your students are meeting more employers than most!

Click HERE to see how teachers in your city are doing – feel free to mention Founders4Schools to your child’s teacher next time you see them!

Invite a teacher you know along to our free training webinars if you like – we’ll have your classroom brimming with job-creators in no time!

To sign-up for our free training webinars, please visit: Eventbrite

 Thank you to the Careers and Enterprise Company for making these possible.

 If you can’t make these dates, get in touch and we’ll see what we can do! To schedule a training for your ECs or EAs on how to use our platform as well as to schedule an employability briefing with key members of your LEP, please email: Kate Walker, kate.walker@founders4schools.org.uk

We look forward to continuing to showcase the efforts and impact of our partners.

 

Yours sincerely,

Sherry Coutu

 

Business leader newsletter January 2017

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As a fellow business leader, it is a pleasure to highlight some of the great work that we’ve been up to at Founders4Schools and to celebrate the collective efforts of our ecosystem, working together to address the employability of young people throughout the UK.

With your help, we’ve now facilitated just under 50,000 students experiencing 130,000 student-employer encounters.  Every hour you spend in a classroom or hosting a workplace visit or hosting a student on work experience makes such a huge difference, especially since it is so hard to hire people with the right skills set!

Special thanks in particular to Founders Forum, Silicon Valley Comes to the UK, Salesforce.org, Local Globe, Tech London Advocates and KPMG for encouraging your members and employees to generously give their time to teachers when they ask.

These encounters, as you know, are the most powerful levers known to cause a student to study subjects like Data Science, which makes them like gold-dust to us. No one can tell us what subject to study, but it’s amazing what your enthusiasm for your chosen path can do for a student’s motivation, especially if neither of their parents work. Please keep saying yes when asked!  Please also refer other business leaders to us - we need more up and down the country!

 

Launch of Workfinder, the work experience service

 I was delighted to announce the launch of our first B2C product Workfinder at BETT 2017 last week.  This work experience service helps students in pilot schools in London, Cambridge and Manchester find work placements at Britain’s best companies in a few taps of their mobile device. Most students find work experience through their parents, putting those who are from deprived backgrounds at a disadvantage. So we’re levelling the playing field.  We will pilot Workfinder at our ‘frequent flyer schools’ and roll it out nationally as soon as we can.  If you are willing to offer work experience placements to children to give them their first taste of work, please signup below: 

I’d like to offer work placements

 Many of you will know that we’ve been working on this intensively for the past two years (since August 2014) and it is the product of hundreds of consultations with business leaders, students, teachers, career coordinators and business leaders like yourself.  We are hugely grateful to the time, money and brains who helped us get here – special mentions go to the  Worshipful Company of Information Technologists, Hugh Campbell from GP Bullhound and the Camden and Cambridge teacher, student and business communities.  

 Other partner organisations we are looking forward to working collaboratively with on this include the Federation of Small Business, CBI, TeachFirst, Prince’s Trust, Young Enterprise, Form the Future, Transformation Trust, WorldSkills UK, and Villiers Park Educational Trust to help introduce us to schools within their networks throughout the UK.

Lastly, a big thank you is extended to those who came to BETT 2017 on 25th January and supported the launch of Workfinder. An extra special acknowledgement to Adobe for hosting us at their booth and allowing us to provide a demo to guests.

Training Workshops

 On 14th December, TeachFirst hosted a workshop in the Isle of Wight, inviting local teachers to learn more about Founders4Schools services. It is always a pleasure to work closely with TeachFirst to provide teacher training.  The event was made possible due to Barclay’s generosity in opening its doors to host the event in Newport.

On 6th December, North East LEP invited us to meet with local business leaders and educators to discuss ways to address the Scale-Up gap and the Skills gap, both of which impact the future growth in the UK. There was an enthusiastic response and I can’t wait to tell you what they are planning in May!  It’s huge!

We’ve also been to Teesside University to join an active community of business leaders and business support representatives to discuss the challenges of scaling businesses in the region, and in turn increase youth employability.

Invite a teacher you know to our free training webinars if you like – we’ll have your classroom brimming with job-creators in no time ;-)

You can also mention to teachers you know that they can sign-up for our free training webinars, please visit:

Thank you to the Careers and Enterprise Company for making these possible.

Scottish skills and scaleups

With the support of Sir Tom Hunter and the Hunter Foundation, Skills Development Scotland (SDS) and Developing Young Workforce (DYW) with the Scottish Government, teachers in Scotland will now have access to a white-label version of Founders4Schools platform through the My World of Work portal.  Watch this space – and if you know scottish business leaders, please encourage them to say yes when asked!

Our Frequent flier ‘shout-outs’…

Congratulations to teachers in Buckinghamshire Thames Valley LEP, Thames Valley Berkshire LEP, and Oxfordshire LEP who have been clicking up a storm of student-employer encounters for their students in the past three months!  We look forward to hearing how they go!

Congratulations to Dorset, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Thames Valley with the highest average Student-Employer Encounters per Teacher in the last three months – an inspiration to teachers everywhere to know that your students are meeting more employers than most!

Click HERE to see how teachers in your city are doing – feel free to mention founders4schools to your child’s teacher next time you see them!

We also remain grateful to our Corporate Partners whose generosity has given us the foundations upon which we rest.  Special shout-outs to Linkedin, DueDil, PCA Predict, Korn Ferry, Odgers Berndtson, Olswang, City University London and Goldman Sachs.  We could not do this without you.

Yours sincerely,

Sherry Coutu CBE

Advisor newsletter January 2017

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As a valued Advisor to founders4schools, it is a pleasure to highlight some of the great work that our partners and business leaders have done, and to celebrate the collective efforts of our ecosystem, working together to address the employability of young people throughout the UK.

With your help, we’ve now facilitated just under 50,000 students experiencing 130,000 student-employer encounters.  Every hour a business leader spends in a classroom or hosting a class on a workplace visit or a student on work experience makes such a huge difference – especially since it is so hard to hire people with the right skills set!

Special thanks in particular to Founders Forum, Silicon Valley Comes to the UK, Salesforce.org, Local Globe, Tech London Advocates and KPMG for encouraging your members and employees to generously give their time to teachers when they ask.

These encounters, as you know, are the most powerful lever known to cause a student to study subjects like Data Science, which makes them like gold-dust to us.  No one can tell us what subject to study, but it’s amazing what your enthusiasm for your chosen path can do for a student’s motivation, especially if neither of their parents work. Please keep saying yes when asked!  Please also refer other business leaders to us - we need more up and down the country!

Launching Workfinder, the work experience service

I was delighted to announce the launch of our first B2C product called Workfinder at BETT last week.  This work experience service helps students in pilot schools in London, Cambridge and Manchester find work placements at Britain’s best companies in a few taps of their mobile device. Most students find work experience through their parents, putting those who are from deprived backgrounds at a disadvantage. So we’re levelling the playing field.  We will pilot it at our ‘frequent flyer schools’, and roll it out nationally as soon as we can.  If you are willing to offer work experience placements to children to give them their first taste of work, please signup below:

I’d like to offer work placements

Many of you will know that we’ve been working on this intensively for the past two years (since August 2014) and it is the product of hundreds of consultations with business leaders, students, teachers, career coordinators and business leaders like yourself.  We are hugely grateful for the time, money and brains who helped us get here – special mentions go to the  Worshipful Company of Information Technologists, Hugh Campbell from GP Bullhound, and the Camden and Cambridge teacher, student and business communities.  

Other partner organisations we are looking forward to working collaboratively with on this include the Federation of Small Business, CBI, TeachFirst, Prince’s Trust, Young Enterprise, Form the Future, Transformation Trust, WorldSkills UK, and Villiers Park Educational Trust to help introduce us to schools within their networks throughout the UK.

Lastly, a big thank you is extended to those who came to BETT 2017 on 25th January and supported the launch of Workfinder. An extra special acknowledgement to Adobe for hosting us at their booth and allowing us to provide a demo to guests.

Scottish skills and scaleups

We’re going to help Scotland scaleup!  I’m thrilled to share with you that we’ve won a contract from the Hunter Foundation to work with  Skills Development Scotland (SDS) and Developing Young Workforce (DYW) to white-label Founders4Schools so that teachers can find business leaders via the “My World of Work” website, which they are accustomed to using. We are all hopeful that this will help the next generation in Scotland to encounter many more business leaders much more easily which will help them grow the economy once they are out of school.

Training Workshops

On 14th December, TeachFirst hosted a workshop in the Isle of Wight, inviting local teachers to learn more about Founders4Schools services. It is always a pleasure to work closely with TeachFirst to provide teacher training.  The event was made possible due to Barclay’s generosity in opening its doors to host the event in Newport.

On 6th December, North East LEP invited us to meet with local business leaders and educators to discuss ways to address the Scale-Up gap and the Skills gap, both of which impact the future growth in the UK. There was an enthusiastic response and I can’t wait to tell you what they are planning in May!  It’s huge!

We’ve also been to Teesside University to join an active community of business leaders and business support representatives to discuss the challenges of scaling businesses in the region, and in turn increase youth employability.

Invite a teacher you know along to our free training webinars if you like – we’ll have your classroom brimming with job-creators in no time ;-)

 You can also mention to teachers you know that they can signup to our free training webinars at the following times:

 Thank you to the Careers and Enterprise Company for making these possible.

Advisory Board meetings set to date

Wednesday 22nd March 8.30-10.30am [Marketing theme]

Tuesday 2 May  8.30-10.30am

Wednesday 24th May 8.30-10.30am

Wednesday 21st June 8.30-10.30am

Tuesday 18th July 4.00-8.00pm (meeting followed by drinks)

August – None

Wednesday 13th September 12.30-2.30pm

Wednesday 11th October 8.30-10.30am

Wednesday 6th December 4.00-8.00pm (meeting followed by drinks)

 

F4S dates for you to note:

  • F4S Scotland launch – 13th and 14th Feb (Edinburgh and Glasgow respectively) March (Aberdeen and Inverness)
  • Opening the London Stock Exchange to celebrate F4S volunteer female CEOs – 6th March
  • TLA Diversity in Tech – 9th March
  • North East LEP celebration of F4S – 10 May
  • F4S named Charity of the Year at WCIT during London tech week – 14 June
  • Second anniversary of founders4schools – please sponsor this! – 15 June
  • International/National Women in Engineering Day – 23rd June
  • House of Lords event to celebrate teachers’ use of F4S – 27 Sept
  • NELEP Bring it on event – engineering – 3rd/4th October
  • Women of the World, Southbank Centre – 11th October
  • Keynote at girls schools association – 20th November

 

Our Frequent flier ‘shout-outs’

Congratulations to teachers in Buckinghamshire Thames Valley LEP, Thames Valley Berkshire LEP and Oxfordshire LEP who have been clicking up a storm of student-employer encounters for their students in the past three months!  We look forward to hearing how they go!

Congratulations to Dorset, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Thames Valley with the highest average Student-Employer Encounters per Teacher in the last three months. It’s an inspiration to teachers everywhere to know that your students are meeting more employers than most!

Click HERE to see how teachers in your city are doing – feel free to mention founders4schools to your child’s teacher next time you see them!

We also remain grateful to our Corporate Partners whose generosity has given us the foundations upon which we rest. Special shout-outs to Linkedin, DueDil, PCA Predict, Korn Ferry, Odgers Berndtson, Olswang, City University London and Goldman Sachs.  We could not do this without you.

 

Yours sincerely,

Sherry Coutu CBE

Founders4School’s Work Experience App

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Founders4School’s Work Experience App due to launch 25 Jan at BETT 2017.

The Trustees of Founders4Schools and I believe this service will be transformative to the UK economy.

The objective of the app is to offer the 1.2 million secondary school students the ability to apply for and monitor Work Experience placements with growing businesses near them while they are at secondary school.

We have run employer consultations, student consultations and school consultations over the past year, secured a corporate sponsor who will pay us to create these placements if the student is from a disadvantaged background and are building the app right now.

This service was developed on the back of the excellent work done by the April 2016 House of Lords Select Committee on Social Mobility, which highlighted the value of and shortcomings in opportunities for work experience in the UK.

Our service will be locally available and we have access to 15,500 potential providers right now due to the previous investments we have made, so we believe that there will be enough opportunities for young people to experience work.

Two-thirds of employers say that work experience is a critical or significant factor when they are recruiting; yet under one-third actually offer some form of work placement or experience to unemployed people, school children or college students.

If employers wish to recruit people ready for the workplace, they must offer experiences of work to school students to help them to develop these skills.

We are seeking donations to defray the investment cost of developing the service from a syndicate of foundations, corporations and individuals, and you may have a view as to who else we should speak to.

Anyone who chooses to support us, this would have a direct impact on our goal to improve the employability of the next generations of school leavers through our Work Experience programme, and will help decrease the number of students Not in Education, Employment, or Training (NEET) which currently stands at 8.4% of young people aged between 16-19.

Yours sincerely,

Sherry Coutu CBE

 

Project Brief: Work Experience for secondary school students (England)

1. The Opportunity

In April 2016 the House of Lords Select Committee on Social Mobility published a report on improving the transition from school to work. Key findings of the report emphasised the importance of improving careers guidance and advice for young people and highlighted the value of and shortcomings in opportunities for work experience in the UK.

The report concluded that work experience is an essential enabler of the school/workplace transition, adding that young adults who could recall high levels of employer contacts throughout their education experience were 20 per cent less likely to be NEETs at the end of school, and 18 per cent more likely to earn more. The report also reported several challenging factors:

Young people tend to gain work experience through their informal networks, which limits them to what is available through those networks. This means that within the current system, aspirations remain fixed.

  • Experience needs to be locally available, as 16 and 17-year-olds do not travel
  • There are not enough opportunities for young people to experience work
  • Two-thirds of employers say that work experience is a critical or significant factor when they are recruiting; yet under one-third actually offer some form of work placement or experience to unemployed people, school children or college students. If employers wish to recruit people ready for the workplace, they must offer experiences of work to school students to help them to develop these skills

Employers require different types of placements for different purposes, but all are important to the businesses they support. Smaller employers tend to offer single, shorter placements, while larger employers have multiple and longer placements available, and are more likely to offer internships.

The report “Increasing the offer of work experience: can demand match supply?” from the National Centre for Universities and Business (NCUB), commissioned by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), reveals that all work placements are tied to business need and improve student employability.

As you know, 82 per cent of scale-ups report that they could grow their company faster if the people who applied to them had the specific skills they needed; the CBI lists low levels of skills in the workforce as the single biggest perceived threat to UK competitiveness in the next five years; and the Royal Society’s vision report forecasted that the number of new science, engineering and tech professionals required in the UK by 2020 will increase by an additional 1 million people.

This document proposes a national work experience service that addresses these challenges and connects students to SMEs; the primary provider of new job opportunities in the UK. The service will be quick and easy to use, and builds on a tried and tested online service capability and an easily searchable database of UK SMEs.

2. The Founders4Schools Work Experience Proposal

Why Founders4Schools?

Founders4Schools’ (F4S) mission is to improve the employability of every young person in education, by giving them access to business leaders in their community.

At F4S our goal is to prepare all young people for the jobs of the future and provide them with opportunities that will help them have high-impact careers. We exist to provide them with the tools that will inspire them and enable them to experience what it’s like to work in a fast growing company, in roles and sectors that are in high demand and will be relevant when they leave education.

F4S has already developed deep insights into the value of students interacting with business leaders during school years through the F4S service. We are ideally positioned to connect two huge sources of talent and future growth.
F4S already uses its partnerships with key industry players LinkedIn and DueDil to maintain comprehensive, up to date intelligence on small and medium enterprises in the UK, and will harness this unique capability to connect students to work experience opportunities nearby. We know from our current business leader partners that many of them are keen to provide work experience.
We will build on our relationships with more than 600 educational partners, including Teach First, Prince’s Trust, Barclays and the Careers and Enterprise Company to ensure that the work experience is offered first and foremost to those who need it most.

How the new service will work?

F4S Work Experience extends the current F4S national offering, which already provides services to teachers and their students at a hyper-local level. The new service will enable school students to explore their local labour market and to approach employers via our easy-to-use mobile app.

Students will have the ability to view, shortlist and apply to companies that interest them using our proprietary recommendations. Each student will be provided with a personal ‘dashboard’ to keep a log of their work experience activities as they improve their work readiness and skills over the years.

When combined with the current F4S service, this provides the potential to include multiple activity types – so that a student’s dashboard will include a timeline with the following:

  • A log of several role model events
  • Note of the companies they met at the careers fairs at their school
  • Applying for and undertaking (several) work experience placements

Young people will be encouraged to evaluate and score their work experience, and to receive feedback from the employer. The dashboard will be structured in a timeline format that will enable them to see their progress month after month, from year to year.

Founders4Schools Business Leaders will receive messages from Founders4Schools on behalf of the student explaining that the student is seeking a work placement and sharing with the employer the student’s CV and cover letter. If the business leader accepts the application, Founders4Schools will receive a fee for the placement. Access to an employer dashboard enables the employer to interact with the applicant and feed back to the student on their performance. The employers will also receive briefings on how to best offer work experience and will have access to what students say about their work experience.

The service will benefit a number of stakeholders:

Students: The service gives control to students to explore work experience that they feel is relevant and convenient to them. Students receive guidance and briefings on how to conduct themselves at work, and access to other students’ feedback on how prospective employers are rated as Work Experience providers.
Matching: The service allows the work placement to take place over the platform.
Matching: The service allows the work placement to take place over the platform.
Feedback: The student keeps and can invite others to view their record of their experience so that other students can learn from their experience.
SMEs: Provides busy and resource-constrained SME HR functions an easy, one-stop channel to access their future talent pool.
Schools: Expands access to relevant local employers and increases schools’ ability to help students prepare for the jobs of tomorrow.
Parents: Provides them with a tool to help their children explore the local labour market and access to the leaders who run those companies.

Across UK scale-ups, the service will match talent and capacity, preparing a young workforce for productive, high-value careers in businesses that deliver growth.

3. Project Objective

Founders4Schools will create a Work Experience service to enable a secondary school student to discover, compare, undertake and evaluate meaningful work experiences that build their skills and confidence.

The service will enable an employer to find relevant work experience candidates and to easily provide them with constructive feedback.

Target student population: The service will be marketed to 6th form students in schools that use the F4S Role Model and Careers Services we provide.

The F4S offer described in this document will not target university students or other young persons outside secondary education. F4S will seek to work with other organisations to achieve a smooth transition for students as they leave school and enter university.

Employers: This service will provide students with access to leaders of companies with more than £ 1 million in turnover, where that turnover is increasing, as this is where the majority of new UK employment opportunities are created.

Founders4Schools is seeking corporate sponsorship to make the service available free of charge to students.

Development Plan

The following development plan has been followed::

Definition, Planning and Funding

F4S has defined the Work Experience proposition and is seeking assistance in securing resources to support delivery of the plan.

Consultation

To ensure widespread take-up and adoption of the service, the design has been informed by the needs and preferences of school students and employers.

Student consultations:

Students will be consulted on their understanding of work experience, how they might approach the marketplace, how they would use a service and the features they would value. This work is underway.

School consultations:

Secondary schools who use the Founders4Schools Role Model and Career Services have been consulted on their understanding of work experience, how they would use a service and the features they would value. This work is underway and we are clear that our approach is novel and a significant improvement to what is currently on offer.

Employer consultations:

Employers will be consulted on the types of work experience they find easiest to offer, and how they would prefer to filter interest and give feedback to students. This work is underway.

Collaboration:

    • F4S has agreed with Barclays LifeSkills to embed their briefings for employers and students.
    • F4S has agreements in place with LinkedIn and links to Government databases so that only relevant employers will be approached.
    • F4S has developed the service WITH students so we are confident that the solution we have in mind will be empowering and engaging for them.
    • F4S has developed this service with several schools throughout the country

Service Design:

Based on the consultation, a work placement service will be designed end-to-end.

Platform Design and Build

F4S anticipates that the service will need to be available both on desktop and as an app for mobiles; this will be confirmed at the consultation stage above. Current plans assume that the student journey will be on an app, and that the employer functions will be solely desktop-based.

Platform Design and Build

The service will be created in partnership with schools and employers with whom F4S has worked in the past.  Once the service platforms are proven to be technically stable, the service will be prototyped in Cambridge and Manchester, where F4S has already secured a strong user and partner base.

Roll out to scale

Following successful pilot the service will be marketed and promoted to STUDENTS, with support available to ensure the service is understood and fully utilised.  Take-up and usage will continue to be tracked using the metrics below.

5. Milestones * (paid for to date by a single HNW individual)

Definition, planning and funding May 2016
Consultation May – July 2016
Service design June – Sept 2016
Platform design and build Sept – Dec 2016
Beta test and pilot launch Jan – Mar 2017
Roll out Jan 25 2017 onwards *

 

6. Measuring success

Following launch, F4S intends to track the following indicators across pilot LEPs (and subsequently across the UK) to assess take up and effectiveness of the service:

  • Students and employers that register to use the service
  • Schools that register to use the service
  • Impact of the service in terms of student subject choices (for participating schools only)
  • Students using the service to request a placement
  • Employers using the service to offer a placement
  • Number of placements successfully brokered
  • Satisfaction rating of users of the service
  • Aged open placement offers
  • Student and employer satisfaction feedback on completed placements

7. Marketing the service

We plan to release the new service to students with the support of schools and partners who already use our service.