New Research Calls for Greater Education and Employer Links
A national survey of over 3,500 education and business leaders has put employer engagement in the spotlight; shedding new light on a fundamental issue for the Bristol economy.
Run by the British Chambers of Commerce, the survey has highlighted the significant benefits of partnerships between schools and businesses.
- The vast majority (88%) of education leaders said employer engagement led to improved outcomes for their pupils.
- Other benefits included increased motivation in lessons (73%), and better careers information (53%).
- However, both sides reported a number of barriers preventing them from building lasting and effective partnerships.
- Businesses cited staff time (53%) and cost as a factor (38%), while some educators identified a lack of interest from business (42%).
With youth unemployment still way above average unemployment and pre-recession levels, this research shows that more must be done to strengthen engagement between business and education.
Commenting on the results, Professor Steve West, President of Bristol Chamber of Commerce & Initiative at Business West said:
“This survey underlines the difference that even the slightest engagement with business can have on young people’s ambitions and achievements.
“I would encourage more employers to offer their support to the many initiatives available so we can direct young people to the many strong career opportunities available in our region. Solving our skill shortages is a key priority for Bristol Chamber of Commerce & Initiative and Business West.”
A number of projects have been set up to link business and educators such as Ablaze, Teach First, Academy Ambassadors, the Learning City Initiative, the West of England LEP and the Bristol Initiative Charitable Trust.
Earlier this year the British Chambers of Commerce also launched the ‘Your Future’ programme of 250 careers events across the country. The first event in Bristol last month gave over 100 students the chance to interview for apprenticeships and to find out more about a growing sector. These projects show that progress has been made, but there is still work to be done.