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Hundreds of primary schools will benefit from £2m investment to support careers education. Today we've announced the 15 providers that will benefit from the fund and deliver projects to primary school age children.

We have allocated £1.65m to help increase the scale and impact of nine existing programmes, and £350,000 to support the launch of six new, innovative programmes working with primary schools.

The investment is designed to both support existing best practice and back new ideas to support innovation in a primary setting.

While there is much existing good career development practice in primary schools, we aim for the fund to support the development of a clear structure for career-related learning at primary level and consistent approaches across schools.

Claudia Harris, CEO of The Careers & Enterprise Company, said:

Careers aspirations and expectations form young. By supporting these brilliant organisations we can help spark a light in more young people just when it matters so much. We look forward to seeing the impact of these innovative programmes that will help children explore opportunities and challenge stereotypes as early as possible.

Scaling-up good practice

Education and Employers, the National Literacy Trust and TeenTech are among the organisations who have been allocated funding to scale-up their current programmes.

TeenTech is launching an interactive programme ‘City of Tomorrow’, to enhance key employability skills such as leadership, teamwork and conflict resolution for Year 5 and 6 students in modern industries. The programme will reach 9,000 students through these interactive sessions and the sharing of resources at teacher and parent briefings.

Education and Employers is receiving the largest amount of funding to increase the scale of their Primary Futures programme, which aims to broaden the horizons of children through making connections between their learning and futures.

Nick Chambers, CEO of Education and Employers, said:

“It will help us bring to life the breadth of the world of work to more than 23,000 primary aged children in 330 primary schools over the forthcoming academic year and will create a step change in the provision of career-related learning.

“We know from our research that children at primary school can rule themselves out of future career paths even at this young age, so it is vital to bring the world of work to life through our fantastic volunteers. We look forward to challenging perceptions around job roles and inspiring the next generation through this funding.”

Supporting innovation

Funding to develop new and innovative programmes has been awarded to organisations including the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), LOUD and the Eden Project. Through these programmes, the Primary Fund aims to build a Primary Toolkit for all UK schools to access. Each of the funded organisations will contribute to the Toolkit by sharing best practice and resources from their programmes.

LOUD is a series of digital films that deliver accessible career-related learning content for Key Stage 2, reaching 3,000 pupils in its first year. The series of 20 short films will feature young people aged 7-11 interviewing young working professionals across a diverse range of careers, focused on STEM subjects, the creative industries and PSHE.

Each film will be accompanied by supporting materials to bridge the gap between curriculum and career. LOUD’s project will also be match funded by the Greater London Authority (GLA).

Gloria Abramoff, Executive Editor at LOUD, says:

“Given that there is a skills shortage in both the STEM and creative industries, LOUD’s commitment is to address this through films where children discover for themselves the joys and challenges of work, and understand the link between the curriculum and career.”

The Eden Project will be using the investment to launch ‘Eden Takeover Days’ for 500 children, by allowing pupils to engage with staff from a variety of backgrounds and job roles. This experience will help them identify their own strengths and weaknesses, as well as learn how to set achievable goals.

A full list of the recipients is below. Details of how the funds have been allocated is available below. 

Scaling Existing Programmes

  • East Sussex County Council
  • Education and Employers
  • Enabling Enterprise
  • Gro Organic
  • 15 Billion EBP
  • Learn by Design
  • National Literacy Trust
  • Regenda Ltd.
  • TeenTech CIC

Developing New and Innovative Programmes

  • Academy FM Folkestone
  • Black Country Consortium Ltd
  • Eden Project
  • LOUD
  • North East LEP
  • The White Room Consultancy Ltd

Scaling existing programmes

Education and Employers (£404,000)
The Primary Futures programme will engage 330 primary schools in England to provide effective career-related learning that benefits more than 23,000 primary aged children. It embeds this schools-led programme tailored to the needs of pupils and with impact assessed throughout.

Education and Employers has over 4,000 primary schools registered on the EE digital school-employee volunteer matchmaking platform. 30 schools (1,350 students) will receive targeted intervention e.g. Teacher CPD, CRL delivery, parental engagement.

Regenda Ltd. (£240,000)
The Raising Aspirations programme consists of four components: self-discovery, opening the world of work, resilience/character/goal setting, employability skills and confidence. It is offered across all Year 5 and 6 pupils in schools where delivered. Parent and pupil involvement are central to this offer. Regenda plans to scale the programme to reach 130 schools and it will be delivered by Positive Footprints.

National Literacy Trust (£164,000)
The 'Dream Big' programme will be delivered to Year 1 pupils and consists of three phases: visits to workplaces, classroom activities and a celebration event. The classroom activity will involve teachers expanding the pupils understanding of the world of work and build on their recent employer visit.  NLT will offer resources and training sessions to the teachers involved. The funding will expand delivery from 20 schools to a further 50 primary schools.

Enabling Enterprise (£286,000)
The programme will support teachers to embed the teaching of the eight essential skills through a combination of training, support and access to teaching resources and tools developed by a team of outstanding teachers. Funding will go towards expanding the programme to a minimum of 20 primary schools in England, working with Senior Leadership to agree goals in support of school priorities with a focus on developing students eight essential skills and other Primary Fund priorities.

East Sussex County Council (£146,000)
The East Sussex Primary Careers Hub will raise aspirations for primary age pupils and create ‘whole system change’ in the county, creating a careers strategy for ages 5-19 (and 24 for SEND) by aligning with the secondary Careers Hub, established in September 2018. Through four strands of activity, the Primary Careers Hub will broaden horizons for all primary age children through exposing pupils to career-related learning and employability skills in the curriculum, high-quality employer encounters with local businesses, inspirational STEM activities and engagement with parents. The pilot programme will work with 24 schools and over 4,000 students from reception to Year 6 to support schools to review their curriculum and look to embed careers, STEM activities, aspirations and encounters with employers and the world of work within the primary curriculum.

Councillor Bob Standley, Lead Member for Education and Inclusion, Special Educational Needs and Disability (ISEND) at East Sussex County Council, said: “We’re really delighted to be leading on this important initiative and look forward to embarking on this pilot project with our primary schools in September. We’ve seen a big improvement in careers support and links between our schools and local employers in the first year of our Careers Hub for secondary schools. We’re confident that scaling up that support, to cover our primary age pupils, will provide a further boost for careers and skills in East Sussex.”

TeenTech (£75,000)
TeenTech City of Tomorrow is an interactive programme for Year 5 and 6 students to deepen their understanding of key employability skills and career opportunities in modern industry. As well as directly running sessions for over 3,000 students, a further 6,000 students will be indirectly reached through sharing resources via a series of teacher and parent briefing sessions. Delivered by TeenTech in conjunction with local employers, the activity is set in the context of ‘cities of the future’ and asks students to explore how they will live, work and play in the future. Students think about local and global challenges and apply critical thinking skills to solve the problems they have identified through innovative building designs.

Maggie Philbin, CEO of TeenTech, said: “I am delighted that The Careers & Enterprise Company are supporting us to deliver the City of Tomorrow programme around the country. We know that the programme is very effective in helping young students see how they belong in contemporary industry and ensuring that they develop teamwork, collaboration, creativity, communication skills and confidence, and are rewarded for the development of these skills.”

Learn by Design (£63,000)
The funding will broaden the reach of the programme to 22 schools as well as three additional deeper learning projects on the L.E.A.D. Academy Trust Curriculum Enrichment Programme. The programme will be delivered to schools in several regions including Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. Activities will include mapping the L.E.A.D Academy Enrichment programme platform to the Skills Builder system essential skills and fully integrating the use of Employer Ambassadors into all event days to enhance career-related learning.

Louise Curd, Director of Programmes at Learn by Design, said: “We are excited to be developing the programme to deepen the learning and enhance the employability skills with the assistance of effective employer encounters within the classroom.”

Gro Organic (£142,000)

A programme which focuses on a Learning Outside the Classroom (LOTC) activity-based approach to contextualise learning. The programme introduces children to different roles within Gro Organic (e.g. gardeners and wellbeing practitioners), as well as wider roles, through a range of employer engagements.

Based on their Roots, Shoots & Wellington Boots programmes, it involves inviting guest speakers and employers to work with children on outdoor activities, as well as some light touch parental engagement via an online platform.

15 Billion EBP (129,000)

15 Billion EBP will work with a number of new schools in the Borough of Newham which includes many areas of deprivation. The focus is on delivering a whole school timetabled ‘World of Work’ week involving combinations of employer visits, interactive work-related problem-solving sessions, use of business volunteers in the classroom, curriculum linked topics, all themed by year group. Parents are also engaged with a ‘workshop’ and resources to support their children with project work at home.

Developing New and Innovative Programmes

LOUD (£98,000 – including £35k matched funding from the GLA)
LOUD (Live Out Ur Dreams) is an authentic and imaginative ‘grab and go’ series of digital films, that deliver accessible career-related learning content for Key Stage 2, reaching over 3,000 children in the first year. The series of 20 short films will feature young people aged 7-11 interviewing young working professionals across a diverse range of careers, focused in the pilot academic year on STEM subjects, the creative industries and PSHE. Each film will be accompanied by supporting materials to bridge the gap between curriculum and career.

LOUD’s project will includes matched funding from the Greater London Authority (GLA). In addition, LOUD will be working in partnership with the GLA to produce films for London based schools and are collaborating with the PSHE Association to create two films with a PSHE focus.

Gloria Abramoff, Executive Editor at LOUD, says: “The idea for LOUD was born through a passion for a fair and equal understanding of work opportunities. Given that there is a skills shortage in both the STEM and creative industries, LOUD’s commitment is to address this through films where children discover for themselves the joys and challenges of work and understand the link between the curriculum and career. We wanted these films to be owned by children to also help develop their curiosity.”

Black Country Consortium Ltd (Back Country LEP) (£87,000)
The Careers 2030 project will build on the already successful Secondary School programmes, the Black Country Careers Hub and the Enterprise Adviser Network. The programme will be delivered through a Primary mini Careers Hub of local primary schools, employers and careers professionals, inspiring pupils at a young age to investigate the jobs of the future and develop skills they might need.

Colin Parker, Skills Director at Black Country Consortium Ltd, said: “We are very excited to be working with The Careers & Enterprise Company, our local primary schools and employers on the Careers 2030 project. It is becoming increasingly important to ensure that, from a young age, pupils are given greater access to meaningful encounters with employers and experiences of the workplace, to help inspire, motivate and enthuse them.”

North East LEP (£69,000)
In partnership with NUSTEM at Northumbria University, North East LEP will be working with 35 schools, testing ways of providing teachers with resources which will help children better understand the range of opportunities open to them, and counteract the stereotypes and lack of understanding that can limit children’s aspirations at a young age.

Michelle Rainbow, Skills Director at the North East Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “This funding will allow us to carry out an important pilot project with trainee primary teachers in the North East, looking at how we can build career-related learning for primary pupils into teacher training. This is a valuable addition to our existing Career Benchmarks: Primary Pilot which is already underway, supporting schools in the North East to deliver high quality careers education to each and every young person, from primary age upwards.”

The White Room Consultancy Ltd (£66,000)
Digital Blast works with primary students to develop their digital skills and support growth in confidence, communication, problem solving and teamwork. It makes a strong connection between their ‘digital world’ and the world of digital work. Schools will be working on a social action project that is important to them; i.e. the environment, health, international, fundraising or e-safety. By getting them to understand that they can apply their talents and passion for digital and apply this to help people, we hope to provide a completely new way for young people to discover the world of work.

Academy FM Folkestone (£35,000)
Academy FM Folkestone will be working with six local primary schools for a media-based careers programme. Each student from Year 4 to 6 will learn how to record interviews with local professionals that will be broadcast on the community radio station. Students will also visit workplaces around the area to get a wide experience of the variety of jobs on offer. The audio they create will be available on the Primary Careers Toolkit, where any teacher can use the project to run career-related learning in their class.

Jo Saxton, CEO of the Turner Schools, said: “We are delighted to have the support from The Careers & Enterprise Company for this project. As a Trust we have taken the research that careers engagement work needs to start early very seriously, and this project helps young people overcome barriers to a successful education.”

Eden Project (£34,000)
Eden Takeover Days will increase 500 Cornish primary children’s awareness of the array of job opportunities available in Cornwall and beyond through have-a-go days where they’ll engage with Eden Project staff representing diverse backgrounds and job roles. Back in school pupils will use their new knowledge to think about their strengths, weaknesses and interests. Based on this they’ll practise the skill of setting themselves an achievable goal and working towards it. Finally, they’ll share their experience with peers and parents. The funding will enable all staff involved to be properly trained and resourced and provide supply cover and travel support for schools.

Sam Kendall, Education Manager at the Eden Project, said: “Eden is proud to be part of the innovative work supported by the Primary Fund. This is an exciting new perspective to develop our educational work with school, and to explore our charitable mission of creating a better future for all, by connecting people with the living world and with each other.”