Industry complains that it is unable to match the current workforce to the technical demand, businesses claim “they simply cannot get the staff.” Current interventions that target 16-18 year olds are too late, we need to help engage and inspire young people early on.
Whilst there are some good initiatives that Primary Schools are able to purchase, these tend to be for one-off projects and delivered by academics. There is no sustained approach that clearly and consistently links the enterprise activities to local business.
Early intervention is key to ensuring our future generation are adequately and appropriately equipped to enter industry. More importantly mapping out education to match their career aspirations and linking this to practical experience will significantly improve the pupils options.
This is an initiative led by the business community that aims to inspire, engage, and educate primary aged students in helping them understand and appreciate enterprise. The project joins up local businesses – Bob the builder, Mr Singh from the corner shop – directly with a primary school in that area. Together with engaging primary school pupils PIE uses existing Apprentices as role models for the younger generation this approach helps in communicating key messages and experiences that pupils can relate to.
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On Friday 19th October 300 pupils from primary schools across the North East participated in STEM and enterprise activities as part of The Big PIE Challenge. Supported by 10 dedicated PIE’oneer volunteers, the pupils were guided through the Challenge designed to introduce them to enterprise and bring their education to life! All of the pupils made a fantastic effort and we are immensely proud of their results in computer coding and flying mini plane gliders. We look forward to the pupils running their own businesses in Stage 2!