West of England Mayor Tim Bowles visited Westfield Primary School in the Somer Valley as part of its ‘Fantastic Futures’ week (July 10 – 14).
Fantastic Futures has been developed by the school to raise the aspirations of its pupils and give them the best possible opportunities for their future lives.
During the week a number of professionals have come to talk to the children about their work, with hands-on opportunities putting core learning such as literacy and maths into real-life contexts. Mangorolla will be running a session called ‘I’m an Engineer, Get me out of here’, and there will also be sessions with Wessex Water; GKN; KeepMoat Regen; BT; Theatre Royal, Bath; CFH; Bath College; Bath Spa University; University of Bath; University of the West of England, and Norton Hill School.
Tim Bowles said: “This really is a fantastic initiative, and something that will make a tangible difference to the lives of these young people.
“I’m passionate that we take a positive message to the next generation about the great career opportunities that exist in the region. We have a diverse range of exciting and fulfilling jobs across many different industries, with dynamic new businesses choosing the West of England as their home. We must plan ahead, working in this way with schools, colleges and businesses large and small, not only to ensure that our residents have the skills employers needs today, but that we’re planning for the skills they will need in 10 or 20 years.”
Simon Mills, head teacher, said: “Research has shown that primary school children often have fixed and narrow ideas about careers. Children start to rule career options in and out at an early age and girls hold stereotypical views about male and female careers by the age of 7.
“By introducing children to successful professionals working in different roles and industries, we aim to broaden their horizons, increase awareness of the opportunities open to them and boost their confidence.”
The school will carry out a survey of pupil’s career choices before and after the week place to show impact and help inform future activities.
The West of England Combined Authority (WECA) covers Bath & North East Somerset, Bristol and South Gloucestershire.