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How can we revolutionise our classrooms to ensure young people take away more from their education than just grades?

Edge Future Learning

England
Edge Future Learning is an initiative by the charity the Edge Foundation who are working to shape the future of education. Edge believes that a coherent, unified and holistic education system can support social equity and enable all young people to fulfil their potential. Edge’s research shows that a broad and balanced curriculum, including creative and technical subjects, rich employer engagement, teacher autonomy and interactive pedagogy, can help to bring learning alive and prepare students for more than just a set of exams. All of Edge’s work, from the classroom to the Commons has the same aim – to ensure young people take away more from their education than just grades; equipped with the skills for 21st century careers and for life...
Introduction

What is Edge Future Learning?

Edge Future Learning can be broken down into three key strands:

Careers Events

In keeping with Edge’s founding ethos, Edge Future Learning firmly believe that hand in hand with ‘learning’ comes ‘doing’, so for the last three years they've been running events that show young people that there are many paths to success, including through technical and professional education.

Working in partnership with Education and Employers, we invited professionals who had studied for vocational qualifications or completed an apprenticeship into classrooms across the country. They shared their experiences with nearly 100,000 children and young people, demonstrating that a university degree is not a prerequisite for a successful career.

They also took schools into organisations such as the National Theatre and the Grosvenor House Hotel in Park Lane, giving students a glimpse into unfamiliar industries and introducing them to roles they might never have thought of.

They are continuing this work as part of Edge Future Learning, demonstrating that profound employer engagement benefits young people and the businesses desperate for that critical talent pipeline.

Curriculum Development

The Government’s statutory guidance and new careers guidance was issued in December 2017. This requires all secondary schools to work towards and ultimately meet the Gatsby benchmarks.

Edge have been particularly focusing on helping teachers to meet benchmark 4 which requires all teachers to link curriculum learning to careers. This is because it has proven to be one of the more challenging benchmarks for schools and teachers to meet.They have worked with employers to create curriculum resources which are directly linked to the National Curriculum. 

Teacher Externships

Edge have been working with secondary schools to give teachers the opportunity to link with local employers to form projects based around an externship day. The days were open to teachers from all subject areas - as well as there being subject specific days for mathematics, geography and; design and technology. 

The aim was to give teachers an insight into the world of work and the career opportunities available in local businesses. The externships also gave teachers some practical examples of how their subject area is used in the work place. This was then followed up by students undertaking an investigation of the business, with the end product being a presentation to the employer and/or their peers. The project has been externally evaluated by the International Centre for Guidance Studies: Derby University under the title Give Yourself the Edge (GYTE).

GYTE achieved many of the programme outcomes they articulated:

  • 80% of teachers surveyed agreed or strongly agreed that participating in GYTE gave them an insight into the world of work.
  • Schools were able to develop or strengthen employer links.
  • Students had raised aspirations; 67% of students agreed that GYTE helped them think about what they wanted to do for further learning and work. However the programme was less likely (45%) to have effected their GCSE decision making.
  • Students were more aware of the types of jobs and career paths available through local employers; 84% of students reported they had learned a lot about local jobs and employers through GYTE.
  • 75% of teachers surveyed were more confident about offering career advice after participating in GYTE.
  • GYTE helped foster employer engagement; all employers were interested in continuing their support to both the schools and the programme .
  • Stakeholders believed that GYTE could improve by 1) increasing the amount of employer engagement between pupils and employers and 2) enabling the type of placements that can help develop curriculum teaching.
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Innovation Overview
13 - 18
Age Group
-
Children/Users
1
Country
2016
Established
-
Organisation
154
Views
Tips for implementation
Check out the Edge Future Learning website for more information: http://www.edge.co.uk/edge-future-learning
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HundrED Review
Innovativeness

Edge Future Learning have an innovative approach to ensuring students have the opportunity to see more than one pathway to a succesful future career.

Impact

Check out the Edge Future Learning's extensive impact reports: http://www.edge.co.uk/news/edge-news/teacher-externships-boost-careers-advice-programmes-in-schools

Scalability

In 2018, Edge connected with over 48,000 children and young people at 330 events in schools and colleges across the UK. Over 600 volunteers joined them to share their experience of vocational education pathways and careers.

Media

See this innovation in action

Career Footsteps goes behind the scenes at the National Theatre | Edge Foundation
Edge Future Learning - Making a difference in the North East
Edge Future Learning - Excelsior & Virgin Trains
Edge Future Learning Project Showcase at Excelsior Academy
Edge Future Learning | Edge Foundation

Milestones

Achievements & Awards

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