Community Engagement with AF Blakemore & Son Ltd

A great example of partnership work is the relationship I have developed with the AF Blakemore & Son Community Engagement Team.

They have supported many school activities over the years and are very proactive in supplying staff.

The video shows exactly what I mean by an inspirational company giving time and energy to develop the skills and outlook of our young people

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Employer Forum promotes Skills Development in schools

DSC_0003I ran my second Employer’s Forum at the Saddler’s Club in Walsall on Wednesday. Companies and organisations from across the Black Country came together to discuss the delivery of Skills Development activities in schools across the region.

John Price, former manager of Walsall Education Business Partnership, gave a keynote speech explaining the history of skills development programmes and we need them today more than ever.

They received a schedule of planned activities this school year and gave a commitment to offer their support.

Anyone wishing to join this growing group of inspiring business supporters please get in touch.

Royal Television Society Challenge Day with City TV

We had a brilliant day with Jayne Green and Des Tong at the RTS Challenge at Aldridge School. The pupils learned about careers in the Media industry, developed their transferable skills and created and presented a pitch for a TV programme.

Des Tong judges the pitches and chose the winners to go forward to the regional final. The winners there will have their programme idea actually made for broadcast on City TV.

City TV is being launched in September and will be found on Channel 8 of Freeview. Tune in!

Des is also bass player for Sad Cafe, a huge band from the Eighties who still perform to old and new fans. He also gave us a solo rendition of a Nile Rodgers bass line (from Chic). Google them if you’re too young to get the reference!

The pupils were superb and came up with a range of worthy ideas. I’m looking forward to the next one at St Francis of Assisi School on 30th April.

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Cheslyn Hay High School Year 9s regenerate the area

I had an excellent day with Cheslyn Hay High School Year 9s. The school is very big on giving pupils the opportunity to develop their business and social skills.

The pupils did an Intelligence Quiz and a mini-challenge to create an art installation to demonstrate the future of Cheslyn Hay. We then gave them a budget of £100k to develop any part of town into a Social Enterprise Business.

All pupils came up with great ideas and then presented them to a judging panel made up of local business representatives:  Peter Cadman, Julie Lee and Tracey Wellings.There was a lot of ‘facing your fears’ as the pupils stood out front with a microphone in their hands and we ended up with fourteen superb presentations.

Young people developing the skills they’ll need for future success.

I’ll be back to see them again next year in Year 10!

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Literacy Day for Year 7 and 8 – One hundred twelve year-olds reading the Times and Mail!

I ran a two-day Literacy Event at The Mirus Academy in Walsall last week. Each day I had groups of Year 7 and 8 pupils developing their reading and writing abilities in a fun, competitive environment.

As usual, I had fantastic support from the local business community.

Day 1: David Tomalin – Age UK    Jacqui Pountney MBE – WES   Helen Gelsthorpe-Smith – Henn and Westwood

Day 2: David Tomalin- Age UK   Louise Taylor and Nicola Delahey- Juniper Training  Craig Vincent- Local Entrepreneur

My aim was to get the young people to read a quality newspaper and present a story they liked. I have to say they did a great job and chose some great stories, some of which I hadn’t seen.

A superb day with a group of lovely young people.

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Year 9 Modern Foreign Languages Day – Shire Oak Academy

It was great to have the opportunity to deliver a Modern Foreign Languages day to Year 9 pupils at Shire Oak Academy.

With my Business Supporters, Helen Gelsthorpe-Smith (Henn and Westwood), PSCO Bernie Craze (West Midlands Police), Glenys Price (Gap Language Services), Jacqui Pountney MBE (Walsall Equestrian Society) and Sam Samuels (HSBC Bank) I delivered a three hour session that gave information on the value of learning a language to future careers and asked the pupils to create and make presentations using as many languages as they could.

The pupils worked hard and producing amazing ideas. It was a great day and I hope many of the pupils choose a language as a GSCE option.

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Year 9 Personal Finance Challenge

2nd place Crestwood School Dudley 3rd place St Francis of Assisi Catholic Technology College Caldmore Accord Housing Group Locality team Fun with Mike Hew Patricia Presenting Presenting talent Steve Presenting Talking on mic winners Bristnall Hall Academy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What a fantastic event. Year 9 teams from across the Black Country came to Aldridge School to compete in a Personal Finance Challenge sponsored by Caldmore Accord Housing Association.

The morning was spent doing challenges based on household and personal budgeting and the afternoon involved writing and presenting a themed school fund-raising event.

Winners – Bristnall Hall Academy

Second – Crestwood School

Third – St Francis of Assisi Catholic Technology College

RAF Museum Playground Design Challenge – Wednesday 18th December 2013

What a brilliant day today. My first inter-school event at the RAF Museum.

Schools Attended:

Aldridge School

Holly Lodge High School

Crestwood School

Bristnall Hall Academy

Sutherland Cooperative Academy

Teams were asked to design a children’s playground for the Museum. They were shown the potential area and were asked to created a design based on the Museum’s history, equipment and artefacts.

All five teams came up with great ideas and Phil Clayton, The Museum Education Manager, chose Bristnall Hall Academy as the winners.

We are planning to put a superteam together from all five teams to come up with costings and a final plan to present to the Museum Board of Directors. Hopefully we can turn pupils ideas into reality.

Winners of the RAF Museum Cosford Playground Design Challenge

Winners of the RAF Museum Cosford Playground Design Challenge

Pupil working with Caroline on their design project

Pupil working with Caroline on their design project

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STEM Design Skills in Action

Young people using engineering design skills

Young people using engineering design skills

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A great day at Blue Coat Academy with their Year 9 pupils today. We got them to use design skills to create their own ideas from K’nex kits. They only had half an hour and it was wonderful too see what they came up with.

Employers want more kids to have experience and knowledge of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths so I would suggest they get more involved in school-based projects to give first-hand information and advice to our young people.

There was so much talent on show today that it was inspiring and gave me great hope for the future.