17 May 2019

Focus on young peoples’ prospects as ‘Careers Hub’ set for D2N2 LEP area

A national initiative to improve careers and educational support for young people, including in some of the UK’s most disadvantaged areas, will establish a ‘Careers Hub’ in the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership area. 

In autumn 2018 20 'Careers Hubs' were set-up in different parts of England, each bringing together schools and colleges to improve careers support for their area’s young people. 

Today (May 17) a further 18 Hubs have been announced (and two existing ones expanded), backed by a further £2.5million in national investment, delivered via the Careers & Enterprise Company (CEC). The CEC, established in 2015, is a nationally funded body which helps link schools and colleges with employers, to increase employer engagement for young people. It works closely with England’s 38 Local Enterprise Partnerships, including the D2N2 LEP. 

One of the new Careers Hubs will cover 21 schools in north-east Derbyshire (including ones in Chesterfield and Bolsover), following a successful bid by the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership (one of its recent skills events is pictured) and partners. 

Around £80,000 in support will enable D2N2’s Careers Hub (led by the Shirebrook Academy) to bring together schools and colleges together with employers, universities, training providers and career professionals to improve job opportunities for young people, focusing on best practice. Support and funding, a ‘Hub Lead’ to coordinate activity and build networks, a central fund for employer engagement activities, and training for a ‘Careers Leader’ in each school are set to be available from September 2019. 

D2N2 is the private sector-led Partnership of business, local authorities, skills and training providers, and community and voluntary services which promote economic growth across Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. 

As well as support from the CBI (Confederation of British Industry), more than 100 ‘cornerstone employers’ across the country have committed to driving and championing connections to the world of work; including Airbus, KPMG, Anglian Water and GCHQ. 

The Careers Hubs are based on a pilot scheme by the Gatsby Foundation (which is behind the Gatsby Benchmarks, an internationally recognised ‘checklist’ of what schools and colleges need to do to provide the best careers advice) and the North-East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), run from 2015 to 2017. 

Claudia Harris, Chief Executive of the Government-backed Careers & Enterprise Company, said: “Careers education is improving across the country. The accelerated progress we’re seeing in the first wave of Careers Hubs shows that this model is working and delivering for young people, with schools and colleges in this first wave of Careers Hubs already outperforming the national average across all aspects of careers education. 

“We are delighted that the Government’s investment is supporting us to roll out this model to a quarter of schools and colleges in the country, helping more young people get the vital support and opportunities they need.” 

Carolyn Fairbairn, Director General of the CBI, said: “Employers understand just how important their role is in preparing the next generation for the world of work and their enthusiasm for supporting schools has never been greater. Connecting business and young people is a proven way of improving life chances.” 

She added: “Firms can sometimes struggle to engage with the schools and colleges that need their support. It’s therefore hugely encouraging to see more Careers Hubs on the way. There is no doubt they will play a pivotal role in helping employers get more involved.” 

Funding for the Careers Hubs initiative is being delivered via the CEC, with funding from the Department for Education

For information on how the D2N2 LEP is already supporting greater engagement between schools and colleges and business, see the information on its Enterprise Adviser Network at web link www.d2n2skills.co.uk/d2n2-ean Through the EAN project, nine Enterprise Coordinators aid over 90 Enterprise Advisers, volunteers from the business community, in supporting over 100 schools with their careers strategy; widening pupils’ experience of and attitudes to the world of work. Schools and businesses wanting more information or to get involved can contact Rachel Quinn – D2N2 LEP Careers, Employability & Inclusion Manager – on 0115 957 8757 ext. 2211 or email: Rachel.Quinn@d2n2lep.org

For more on the work of the Careers & Enterprise Company see its website at www.careersandenterprise.co.uk 

Media wanting further information about the D2N2 LEP can contact D2N2 Communications Manager Sean Kirby on 0115 957 8749 or email: sean.kirby@d2n2lep.org