City of Bristol College welcomed over 100 senior representatives from the city’s key businesses and education establishments, to launch its new curriculum strategy. The strategy is intrinsically aligned to the local employers’ needs and the region’s economic growth priorities, complementing the nation-wide policy changes on technical education and enhancing lifelong development of transferable skills of individuals.
Top decision makers of the city’s major businesses, including Hinkley Point Training Academy, University of Bristol, the University of the West of England, CITB and Bristol City Council, attended an evening event at the college’s South Bristol Skills Academy in Hengrove Park, hosted by James Durie, Chief Executive of Bristol Chamber of Commerce and West of England Initiative at Business West.
Delegates participated in a lively debate with an expert panel consisting of Emma Jarman, Vice Principal – Curriculum and Quality at City of Bristol College, Ben Rhodes – Assistant Regional Director for South West at CBI, Vanessa Moon – Director at Moon Consulting and Clare Vertigen – Director of the South West Apprenticeship Company. The discussion focused on outlining advantages and barriers to co-design and co-delivery of curriculum in partnership with employers, and debated a fine correlation that exists between government funding available for curriculum delivery and the development of curriculum that is responsive to the needs of local economy, addresses skills gaps and creates positive impact on communities.
James Durie commented: “City of Bristol College is our city college as well as our business partner, keen to provide what employers need to achieve the region’s economic growth and to create positive impact on communities. Thank you to the college for bringing us together to help us build a better place to live and work.”
Lee Probert, Principal and Chief Executive of City of Bristol College, added: “Our event, in partnership with employers, is about partnering with the city’s businesses to develop a co-designed and co-delivered curriculum that responds to specific skills gaps in organisations and creates more prosperous and socially mobile communities. Only by working together can we effectively continue developing sustainable economic growth and maximise the benefits of lifelong learning for the region.
“City of Bristol College, is the city’s college, and we will be as much at the heart of the planning and development businesses do to inform their future skills requirements, as we are with school leavers and other key student groups.”
In addition to launching the new curriculum development strategy with employers, Councillor Anna Keen, Cabinet Member for Education delivered an inspiring keynote speech during a breakfast event held at City Restaurant at the College Green Centre. The event was attended by head teachers from the city’s schools such as Bridge Learning Campus, Fairfield High School, Chew Valley School, Oasis Academy and Merchants’ Academy, as well as other key education partners, including Bristol City Council and Hospital Education Service. It outlined the college’s revised progression pathways ranging from pre-entry level to higher education which are available across its classroom based and apprenticeship provision, but also wider engagement opportunities that exist between education partners to achieve best possible progression results for young people who are making transition between education providers or employment.
Cllr Keen commented: “Developing curriculum that not only meets the needs of our young people but also better connects education partners in our city is the key to developing productive workforce. Unless we collaborate as a city, we’ll miss out on giving many young people fair opportunities they need in order to develop their employability skills.”
Emma Jarman, Vice Principal – Curriculum and Quality at City of Bristol College, added: “People are at the heart of our curriculum strategy, ensuring that every young person has a clear form of progression, receives right careers guidance and is motivated towards achieving their ambitions. Collaborative partnerships and civic engagement play a fundamental part in us delivering our objective of creating positive impact on local communities.”
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Employer Strategy Launch Event photo gallery.
Schools Curriculum Strategy Launch Event photo gallery.