An innovative scheme to bring the world of business into the high school has seen 25 Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre schools take part.
The the Lancashire Enterprise Adviser Network, which twins local business volunteers with schools to bring workplace insights into the classroom, has passed the 100 schools milestone.
Co-funded by Lancashire Country Council and the Careers and Enterprise Company, and delivered by Inspira on behalf of the Lancashire LEP’s Skills and Employment Hub, the Enterprise Adviser Network was first successfully piloted with 20 schools in 2016.
Firms provide senior and experienced business volunteers and schools get access to a wealth of insights and frontline evidence about what work is really like.
This is shared through talks in schools, regular school trips to workplaces, hosting mock interviews and attending special careers advice days where employers take an active role in explaining and promoting different types of job roles and training options.
One example is Montgomery High School in Blackpool which has been partnered with a local coaching consultancy called Confidence Coffee House.
Stephen Careless, Montgomery High School’s Principal, said: “Our involvement in the Lancashire Enterprise Adviser Network to date, has helped to further strengthen our links with employers and other local partners.
As a locally based sole trader with excellent local business contacts, our Enterprise Adviser Jane Ayrton is brokering new links to the world of work for our pupils, which is already proving beneficial in helping to develop their employability skills”.
Entrepreneur Jane Ayrton, who set up the Confidence Coffee House consultancy, said: “The Enterprise Adviser role has been an exciting strategic opportunity to bring together all of my skills and experience, to enable Montgomery High School to create beneficial links with employers.
"This is helping to equip their pupils with the employability skills that will assist them in making informed careers choices.”