TheKnowList Academies initiative is aimed at bringing industry and education closer together. The structured academic programme will provide young adults aged 16 to 19 with support and mentoring from business and enterprise.
Industry organisations will play an active role in devising a curriculum that enables students to achieve high grades in A-Levels as well as receiving vocational qualifications in enterprise.
The first academy is expected to launch in Birmingham in 2014, under a partnership with the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce Group.
Daniel Brown, CEO of TheKnowList comments: “We simply want to inspire young adults during their A-Level studies, while giving them complementary qualifications in enterprise. Through our programme, we believe that students will remain motivated during their education and be better equipped to develop a successful career.”
Call to Arms! We need your Support!
I have made you aware in recent months of our plans to open a new Free School in September 2014 as part of the government’s drive to make education more relevant to the needs of both young people and business. TheKnowList College for Entrepreneurship (KCE) is close to submission for consideration by the Secretary of State as a 16-19 College; the application will be submitted on January 4th 2013. It will be the first of a new breed of employer led partnerships to develop young entrepreneurs ready to progress to work or university.
The need for radical change has been highlighted by Lord Heseltine’s recent report; ‘No Stone Unturned in Pursuit of Growth’, launched at the Birmingham City Town Hall, Oct. 31st . The report calls for radical action and highlights the central importance of education and training. I am delighted to say that the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce is supporting the application process for the College for Entrepreneurship.
The Chamber will provide 8 floors of their Birmingham Headquarters to house the College. Local employers will be invited to support the management of 4 enterprise companies, operated from the college, which will provide specialist resource services to local businesses in; Export, Web Based Commerce and Coding, Rapid Prototype Reproduction and Professional Services, amongst others. In place of work experience students will undertake a role in managing their own enterprise companies. The students will attend for 34 hours per week over a 40 week year to develop an ethos of work readiness ahead of progression to university, internship or employment.
The college will combine rigorous A level studies with employer led business enterprises that support the Chamber’s member companies and local SMEs. I believe this initiative will bring together employers and young people in a positive partnership to regenerate UK PLC. OCR (Oxford, Cambridge and RSA Examinations) has responded favourably with regards new employer led qualifications and it is intended that all students will leave with:
- Russell Group (UK’s top 25 universities) approved A levels, plus
- A combination of additional AS levels and Level 3 Certificates from a range of studies including; Law, Management, Business and Finance, Economics, Marketing and Communications, Export, Computer Science, Human Resources, and Business and Technical Languages (including Mandarin, Urdu and Japanese), plus
- A Chamber Certificate of Enterprise and Entrepreneurship endorsed by those local companies that have been in receipt of support through the Learning Companies mentioned above.
TheKnowList is supported in this undertaking by Partnership Education, PTS Consulting and PKF; all are DFE accredited Framework companies that have facilitated over 100 new academies, Free Schools and UTCs. Recent projects include the JCB Academy, Silverstone F1 and West Midlands Construction UTCs, Birmingham University’s innovative Teaching School and the first 16-19 Free School, The London Academy of Excellence. I am confident of success and am now inviting you to become a major stakeholder, or supporter, of this important initiative. This is your company’s opportunity to become part of a game changing project which will make a major contribution to the nation’s economic recovery for decades to come.
The Department for Business Innovation and Skills said this of Lord Heseltine’s report:
“The report, ‘No Stone Unturned in Pursuit of Growth’, makes 89 recommendations which aim to inject stability into the economy, create the conditions for growth and maximise the performance of the UK. At the heart of the proposals are measures to unleash the potential of local economies and leaders and enable every part of the UK economy to raise its game.”
This is a ‘call to arms’, those answering it will not only be supporting a central platform of government policy, but also leading it from the front. There are 2 immediate ways in which you can participate:
- Read the accompanying leaflet which outlines the KCE proposals and send a letter highlighting your company’s support for the project. These letters are an important part of the application process as they illustrate a wider consultation and consensus base for the proposals
- Please consider an active role for your company as a sponsor providng for example:
- CSR contributions to the college including
i. Project leaders for the enterprise companies operating from the college
ii. Mentors for the students
iii. Work placements
- A major sponsorship role leading and managing one of the enterprise companies reflecting your companies values, ethos and commercial aspirations
- Preparedness to market and promote the work of the KCE project to a wider business audience from your community of partners and clients and a willingness to include web based news streams and other media within your company communiques
As an immediate action I would welcome letters of support for the project and secondly an invitation to meet and further explore the potential for your company to take a leading role in this enterprise. The next 21 months will be an extraordinary opportunity to make a real difference to education and training for young people. I hope to welcome you on the journey.
What are TheKnowList Academies?
Timeline documentationOpening a Free school requires a number of essential tasks which need to be completed by the sponsor. The tasks can be split up into Legal, Finance and Project management tasks and Education tasks. The essential work streams of each project can broadly be broken up into:
- Managing Your Project
- Site and Buildings
- Marketing and Communications
- Stakeholder Management and Statutory Consultation
- Education Deliverables
- Funding Agreement
- Preparing to Open
Our thanks to the following for their help in the development of TheKnowList Academies material: