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Latest News

02 Aug 2017

2750 year 9 pupils complete Black Country Passport to Employment

Over 2750 year 9 pupils from 16 Black Country senior schools have completed the Black Country Passport to Employment Programme. The Passport to Employment is a collaborative project led by the Black Country Skills Factory and funded by The Careers & Enterprise Company.

The Passport to Employment has supported young people across the Black Country to develop their careers knowledge and employability skills in key transformational sectors including Advanced Manufacturing, Building Technologies, Transport Technologies, Environmental Technologies and Business Services.

The programme has been recognised nationally for connecting year 9 pupils and teachers with employers from these key sectors through a variety of activities and events held at both the school and employers. In addition to the pupils engaging in the project, from December 2016 to July 2017 53 teachers undertook visits and over 90 employees from 38 different companies have participated as volunteers, hosts or contributors to the session plans.

Of the 2750 pupils who participated, the programme has had the following impact:

·      78% of pupils have developed knowledge and understanding of the key sectors and what is involved in working in these sectors.

·      72% of pupils are more likely to consider apprenticeships.

·      68% wanted to know more about the key sectors as possible future careers.

Led by the Black Country Skills Factory delivery partners include Education Business Partnerships (EBPs) from across the four boroughs; Wolverhampton, Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Business in the Community (BITC), as well as businesses from across the Black Country.

Working collaboratively these organisations have developed 1-day interactive sessions for year 9 pupils and teachers from 16 schools in the Black Country, the sessions included a "Skills Challenge” and a "Getting a Job in the Sector” activity.

Len Oakes,  Assistant Headteacher of Redhill School, Stourbridge said: -  "It was a big challenge to keep 235 year 9 pupils focussed for a whole day but the Black Country Passport to Employment team and business partners were outstanding in their enthusiasm, positive outlook and patience with our young people.

"The pupils were challenged and motivated throughout the day and will look back on this experience with immense gratitude. They gained a fantastic insight into what it takes to prepare for the world of business and the opportunities they might encounter in the future. Their enthusiasm and focus shone through during the day – totally down to the appropriateness of the content covered and the way in which it helped to develop the interpersonal skills so vital for success in the world of enterprise and the workplace.”

Colin Parker, Skills Factory Director, Black Country LEP said: "Our Passport to Employment programme has  proven to  make a real impact with the Year 9 pupils at a time when they are making subject selection decisions.  The knowledge and understanding of the future key job sectors in the area is vital knowledge both for them and their teachers in helping them to make informed decisions.   78% of pupils gained knowledge and understanding of the sector, with 90%+ of teachers stating the workshops are relevant for them, their institutions and their pupils.

"This programme has succeeded above our expectations and the results highlight the importance and the benefits of schools and business working together in careers and enterprise education.

"This programme could not have succeeded without the help and passionate support of local employers and the cooperative working between the partners.”

Natalie Cramp, Chief Operating Officer of the Careers & Enterprise Company, said: "The Careers & Enterprise Company have been delighted to support the Passport to Employment programme. It is an inspirational offer targeted specifically at the Black Country and delivered by a fantastic partnership of local and national providers supported by strong support from local employers.


"Employer engagement with young people is critical to inspire and prepare them for the world of work. We recently recognised the Passport to Employment programme with a Joining the Dots Award as a result of the impact it is having for Enterprise Adviser Network schools in the area and the collaborative partnership working forging strategic employer relationships which will support thousands of young people into the world of work. I hope many more employers get involved in this excellent initiative.”


For further information on the Passport to Employment visit http://www.blackcountryskillsfactory.co.uk/

For more information on the awards and The Careers & Enterprise Company’s Annual Conference visit https://www.careersandenterprise.co.uk/news/joining-dots-annual-conference-2017

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