We are already seeing the benefits of Young Enterprise
Jeremy Jackson is a powerful figure in the lives of young people living in one of the UK’s most deprived neighbourhoods – Moss Side in Manchester. It’s a classic urban high-rise environment where local people are striving against monumental social and economic odds to better the lives of their children. Jeremy is a passionate believer in the help Young Enterprise brings. Here’s what he told us:
We introduced enterprise education into our school for the first time last year and have already seen the benefits. The Young Enterprise programmes have practical, fun, hands-on activities which open the minds of primary school children and encourage them to think about the world around them. The business volunteers with Young Enterprise manage and lead the whole process.
For the day, pupils came to school dressed as what they’d like to be when they grow up; we saw a whole array of different ambitions: policemen, nurses, teachers and most ambitious of all a spaceman! Through the programme, the children became aware of some of the different career options available and the skills and attitudes they’d need.
The modules help to ensure that every child, regardless of their background or circumstance, has the support they need to make a positive contribution and achieve economic well-being. By allowing children to experience the key principles of enterprise and employability in a relaxed atmosphere, we are contributing whole heartedly to this aim. The programme helps to increase pupils’ understanding of the workplace and life beyond their immediate classroom environment.
I believe the experience pupils gain from the Primary Programme is vitally important. They learn about business and the wider world in a hands-on and practical way, which is more effective than just telling them. Our first experience of delivering the programme was a great success; the pupils were given new challenges and access to information and insight that was previously unavailable. The teaching materials have clearly been refined carefully and effectively to ensure the programme is suitable for primary age, and challenges them without going too far.
Enterprise education in primary schools is not about creating the next Richard Branson or Peter Jones, it’s about bringing up a generation of enterprising young people who understand the value of working and aren’t afraid to think with ambition. The Young Enterprise Primary Programme encourages pupils to talk to each other about the world of work and realise that a good career can give job and life satisfaction, and money to enable them to live the life they want.