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Shaftesbury Park and Enterprise Education

Shaftesbury Park Primary School has had a bilingual stream throughout the whole school for the past 3 years. Situated in a diverse part of London, the bilingual stream was influenced by the local community whilst also looking to what skills children shall need in the future.

Deputy Head Andrew Smith explains the gradual growth of enterprise education within the school came from “thinking of what skills do children need in the future, what are the core employability skills they’ll need?” Enterprise education within the school began through a whole school Challenge Day in which students worked in teams to create new societies to live on Utopia. The skills have been further nurtured through lesson time projects in every class across all years of the school. Students are also able to take the skills developed within school and apply them into a real-world environment at businesses, including Yoti and Experian. Shaftesbury Park also holds ‘Raising Aspirations’ assemblies, which sees business professionals coming to the school and speaking to the children about their career. Ranging from local shop owners to dentists, it has enabled pupils to see the wide range of opportunities they have before them.

Students from Year 5 and 6 were given further opportunity to develop their enterprise schools through the City Pitch initiative by the Mayor’s Fund for London. Mixed across year groups, the students form teams to create their own Social Enterprise. Whilst each group showed incredible use of imagination and working in a team, the ‘Waste Out of Our Space’ app creators were named the overall the champion as voted for by their peers in a school assembly. The 9 students successfully earned themselves a place in the final, which saw them pitch their idea at London City Hall in front of a panel of judges and ultimately receive £1500 in funding to launch their app.

James, a Year 5 teacher who supported the students through the City Pitch process, was clear that by developing their enterprise skills throughout the year, the students were well equipped to tackle any challenge. He commented on how important Aiming High was for the children, who hadn’t believed they’d achieve so much.  Judges were particularly impressed with Shaftesbury Park students who were able to define what a leader is, having learnt it through the schools focus on Enterprise Skills. As put by James “City Pitch brought the outside world in and made the children see that enterprise skills are worth developing”.

City Pitch was a clear illustration of the progress students’ progress in developing their enterprise skills. Just as a child’s ability in literacy and numeracy is assessed, enterprise education can be assessed in a similar way. The Skills Builder framework enables teachers accurately level their students. This then equips teachers to better target the strengths and weaknesses of students, which skill needs more focus at a class level or which student is falling behind in a particular area. Deputy Head Andrew Smith stated “Skills Builder makes it more on par to any other lesson. The data from it allows you to see the progress being made and is strong evidence of the impact.”

Walking through Shaftesbury Park Primary School you can see the prominence of enterprise skills can be seen everywhere, on washing lines in classrooms or on displays throughout the school halls. Teachers have seen significant changes in the attitude of their students. A Year 3 teacher shared that in her class, the girls have found their voices and grown whilst the boys have shown greater maturity when working in teams, due to the “valuable set of skills that are setting them on the right path for life”. Andrew concluded by saying the “biggest impact is the children’s aspirations. They’ve change, they see more opportunity. They’ve been given new visions of what they can do with their future”.

By combining enterprising learning in the classroom and out of the classroom Shaftesbury Park students are making excellent progress in their enterprise skills as well as in their readiness for real life. To find out how you can get involved, Contact Us.

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