And they’re off! Race to the Top school improvement projects are underway

16 November 2015

Schools across the county have launched their Race To The Top projects in a bid to improve pupil performance and attainment levels in Northamptonshire.

Funded by Northamptonshire County Council, the Race To The Top strategy aims to raise educational standards and job prospects for young people by making £1million available for school improvement projects over the next two years.

Projects underway

Twenty-two projects involving almost 100 schools have been awarded a share of the fund and these got underway in September.

The projects include:

  • Ferrers School is running masterclasses and transition projects with pupils at Higham Ferrers Junior School, South End Junior School and Whitefriars Junior School to improve English, math's and science skills and ease their transition to secondary school
  • The Hospital and Outreach Education pupil referral unit is working to encourage young people with autism and anxiety to re-engage with learning and bring them back into education through The Bridge project
  • Geddington CofE Primary School has launched the Geddington University, working with Kettering Buccleuch Academy and voluntary sector partners, to provide a series of after-school sessions involving a sporting activity, a homework club, workshops and talks, with the aim of raising aspirations and improving pupil participation
  • Clipston Endowed VC Primary School is training its lunchtime supervisors to lead positive play activities during break times to engage pupils
  • Wren Spinney is working with Isebrook and Maplefields Academy to offer work-related learning opportunities for students with learning difficulties at The Studio in Kettering

County Council leader Cllr Jim Harker said: “I am delighted that the first projects funded through our pioneering Race To The Top strategy are now under way and we are already seeing some good work with pupils across Northamptonshire.

“Every child deserves the best possible education and we have been very clear in our commitment to addressing poor performance and aspiration levels in Northamptonshire’s schools.

“These 22 projects are very varied but all have clear objectives to engage and encourage pupils to push themselves and perform to the best of their ability.”

Evaluation

The schools will work with the County Council, the University of Northampton, businesses and voluntary organisations on their projects, and the end-of-year evaluation will be led by the University.

Also forming part of the Race To The Top strategy is the new Place To Teach campaign, led by Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership, which aims to recruit talented teachers to work in Northamptonshire schools.

The campaign features a marketing campaign and a series of roadshows and recruitment events to highlight the county’s appeal as a place for teachers to come and work. For more information visit www.theplacetoteach.com.

To find out more about the Race To The Top strategy, visit www.northamptonshire.gov.uk/racetothetop.


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