Knowsley MBC, headteachers, Knowsley Community College, Merseyside Connexions Service, Knowsley Compact and the Learning and Skills Council have worked together to create and develop this new initiative that aims to meet the needs of the individual student.
There are four unique strands to the Collegiate. These include:
- An enhanced curriculum with option choices, built around the need of individuals
- A new Vocational Skills Centre - a purpose-built high technology facility providing young people with the opportunity to study for recognised vocational qualification skills in a real working environment
- A new on-line learning environment which will use information and communication technology to support students in all aspects of their learning, including on-line modules in three of the new vocational GCSEs - Information and Communication Technology, Leisure and Tourism and Science
- A student entitlement that ensures that all students have the guidance, mentoring and personal development appropriate to his or her needs. This will also ensure that some elements of arts, cultural and work related education will be covered. Each student will have a progress file, to record their skills, quality and achievements as they progress through from 14-19 and onto higher education or employment.
In a strong endorsement of this strategy, Knowsley MBC has been awarded a£500,000 capital grant from the government to help to develop its 14-19 Collegiate. Funding is also being requested from the Learning and Skills Council to help to fund a new Vocational Skills Centre, which will be based in Kirkby.
Jim Keight, leader of Knowsley MBC, is fully behind this step change in the way education is going to be offered to the young people of Knowsley. He commented: 'I am delighted that the government is supporting our innovative strategy with this new capital grant. We see young people as coming first within the education agenda and our 14-19 Collegiate aims to build the curriculum around their needs. It will be a much more flexible system for young people and will offer them choices and opportunities for the future. The new system will also provide a proper framework and guidance which ensures that every individual receives support to help them reach their full potential.'