Wilmslow High School is looking for more local businesses and community groups to join their 'Achievement Partners' initiative.
The scheme was launched in September to promote the mutual benefits of schools and businesses working together, in particular the positive impact that this collaboration can have on young people.
Some partners may help for one day of the year, whilst others work with the school on a weekly basis. Amongst the current Achievement Partners are 45 volunteers from a variety of businesses who conduct mock interviews with Year 11 students.
Other activities include work experience placements for Year 10 and 12, mentoring students who are delivering presentations, offering site visits, giving career talks and sponsoring events.
Assistant Headteacher, Mark Vincent explained "One of our objectives is to enrich the education of students and provide them with opportunities to learn new skills and gain experiences beyond the classroom, making them 'future ready'.
"Working with Achievement Partners, we are able to give our young people real life opportunities to raise, as well as realise, their aspirations; activities such as work experience, mentoring, mock interviews, careers talks, site visits and sponsorship incentives can positively impact upon achievement, attainment and engagement. Becoming a member of the Wilmslow Business Group has really helped us to engage with local businesses and forge excellent links."
Business Group Chairman, Catherine Mackenzie, is very supportive of the Achievement Partners initiative. She said "As a parent and a business woman, I really appreciate the benefits that these partnerships can bring for young people, companies and schools. As local employers we can add so much value to students' education and to our own businesses: improved recruitment, employee development, community engagement and brand awareness are just some of the benefits gained from working with schools.
"As a business group, we have worked with the High School in so many ways; most recently we sponsored the school's annual attendance incentive prize and provided two iPads. I strongly recommend that all businesses make the effort to make a link with the school and make a genuine difference."
This viewpoint is echoed by school governor and DHL employee Jaclyn Homer, "As a governor at the High School I now have a much better understanding about how important it is for the worlds of work and education to move closer to each other. Traditionally, businesses have faced numerous barriers when trying to get a 'foot in the door' with schools; the school's Achievement Partners initiative removes these potential barriers and facilitates effective partnerships."
If you are interested in becoming an Achievement Partner or would like more information about this initiative, click here to view the information brochure or contact Community Liaison Coordinator, Charlotte Whatson, on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01625 444 159.
Photo: Wilmslow Business Group Chairman, Catherine Mackenzie, presenting iPads to two lucky students whose names were drawn at random, from all those students achieving 100% attendance.