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It was brilliant to see some of our schools and supporters out in force last week for Enabling Enterprise’s Celebration Evening.
Our Celebration is an annual opportunity to bring together some of our partner businesses and schools to share the successes of the year, and say a proper thank you. It also puts us through our paces by launching our annual Impact Report.
>> You can read our full Impact Report 2013 here
>> See video highlights from the Celebration Evening 2013 here
A Big Year
The event was kindly hosted by one of our partners, Forward Foundation and their creative space proved to be a perfect fit for what the evening had to offer We kicked off with the numbers, and it’s been exciting to see more quantitative progress at EE this year:
• The number of students has increased to 20,900 (2012: 11,740)
• This has been made possible by the hard work of 1,034 teachers (2012: 445)
• The total number of programmes running is a healthy 231 (2012: 117)
Impact on Skills
But we don’t exist just to work with more students. EE’s mission is to ensure that one day, all students leave school equipped with the enterprise skills, experiences of the world, and aspirations to be successful. This year, we’ve put a lot of work into developing a skills assessment framework that will allow us to quantifiably demonstrate and support the students’ progress towards long-term success from when we start working with them at the age of six.
Developed with the support of business partners including PwC, UBS, Freshfields and Forward Foundation the framework helps to assess eight key skill areas including teamwork, aspirations, communication and resilience. The initial results are encouraging:
• Average primary school student not only met the amount of skills progress they need to in their time on the programme, but actually exceeded it making an average 16 months progress in 12 months.
• The average secondary school student made a staggering 18 months progress in 12 months.
Critically though, we have to remember that every level means something different to each student: Whether it is the student who is now comfortable contributing to a discussion with his peers, or the shy student who presents their project to their class, or the young person who finds a long-term goal during one of the business trips.
To make sure we never chase numbers and forget the students, we were joined by teachers, students and a guest speaker to share four stories from the year:
Curwen Primary School
Curwen Primary based in Plaistow in London Borough of Newham joined Enabling Enterprise three years ago when it was a pilot scheme. The majority of their students are from disadvantaged backgrounds and often have few opportunities to experience high quality extra-curricular activities that can allow them to achieve.
Curwen saw Enabling Enterprise as providing the opportunity that was lacking and decided to offer the programme to year 5 and 6, a particularly challenging cohort. As enterprise coordinator Kate Miles noted, “within twelve weeks the teachers noticed a difference in their students: they were able to work together with different people as well as build in confidence.”
One particular highlight from a lesson-time project was the students’ charity fundraising challenge. Kate said: ‘They organised a whole event themselves, down to what they were going to sell, how they were going to organise it, who would be their customers, invites to parents and setting up the stall’.
Seeing the impact, this year Curwen decided to make Enabling Enterprise a whole school programme as one of our Partner Primary Schools so every child receives at least an hour of enterprise in lesson time every week. Additionally, Kate noted the importance of the trips to business supporters: “You putting on those days, makes a real difference to our children.”
Cardinal Pole Catholic School
Cardinal Pole School based on Hackney was the first school to be involved with Enabling Enterprise. Last year, Enabling Enterprise tracked a sample of 30 students for a total of 900 learning hours and on 6 business trips. When measuring the impact on the students they have done particularly well, with the students making particular progress in problem-solving and saying positive where they made twice the expected rate of progress.
Three students who did exceptionally well came to share their experiences of working on these programmes.
“Last year we were part of an innovative IT project where we had to make a technology based business idea,” explained Deji. “It was the first time we heard the word ‘innovative’ so we were all working hard to have an original idea. We came up with an app that uses image recognition to advertise to you and it was a success.
“Enabling Enterprise has really helped us lay out what you need to make a business which will help us in the future. We learned lots of new skills – problem solving, listening skills, time management and organisation skills. We have managed to transfer these skills to other lessons. Overall it was an excellent experience to run a business and see what it was like.”
Northwold Primary School
Northwold Primary in Hackney joined Enabling Enterprise a couple of years ago, and have particularly benefited from the support of UBS in the borough. Over the last year, every child in years 4, 5 and 6 had the chance to visit UBS and meet the inspiring volunteers who work there.
Two students who have taken part on many Enabling Enterprise programmes came to speak about their current project – setting up a newspaper.
“This term our task was to create a newspaper, we started off by analysing current newspapers and learning about teams and individuals who come together to create the finished products. We also learned a lot about newspaper layout, formats and how free newspapers such as Metro make profit through advertising. We didn’t just learn about newspaper, we learned key life skills, we learned lots about ourselves and each other – for example how communication can be key in group work situations.
“We faced many challenges when making out newspaper. In our groups we all had to make sure that we completed our set tasks so we didn’t let our team down. This allowed us to complete our tasks in a similar environment to a real work office, including working to deadlines. We would like to thank Enabling Enterprise for giving us the opportunity to learn and giving us the skills at the same time as having fun.”
Matthew Cain is an entrepreneur based in London and is a huge supporter of Enabling Enterprise. He recently authored the book, Born to Fail: 13 surprising Start-Up Lessons and offered to give any proceeds to Enabling Enterprise as he firmly holds the belief that students need to be equipped with key skills that will help them in later life.
Matthew said that he had been inspired by seeing the students on a visit to Crossrail earlier in the year: ‘I was really pleased to go along to one of the business visits to Crossrail and to see the change that happened to the young children at Crossrail, and also the change that happened to the employees at Crossrail as they went through the day.’
You can buy your copy of his book here
Still a Long Way to Go
It’s been an exciting year for Enabling Enterprise, and it’s been wonderful to have the opportunity to work with such a committed and generous group of businesses and supporters. However, as our founder Tom concluded; “despite everything that has been achieved over the last four years, we’re still in the foothills of what this organisation and this group of partners are capable of. So while we celebrate the last year, we recommit ourselves to ensuring that one day, all students leave school equipped with the skills, experiences and aspirations they need for successful lives.”