In October 2016 the Secretary of State for Education Justine Greening announced six Opportunity Areas, including Derby. This has now increased to 10 areas who will share a £60m pot of funding which will provide a greater focus on social mobility, establishing links with industry and better careers guidance. The Social Mobility Commission highlighted that the 10 areas have particularly entrenched barriers that make it harder for young people to progress.

Ms Greening said .....

Ensuring all children can access high-quality education at every stage is critical. This is about giving children in these areas the right knowledge and skills, advice at the right time, and great experiences.

Education services and businesses in the opportunity areas will work to "create opportunities outside school that will raise sights and broaden horizons for young people.

Education Secretary launches plans to raise education standards and broaden the horizons of young people in areas struggling with social mobility (Released 9th October 2017). Delivery plans for the first 6 opportunity areas, and the methodology and data used to select the 12 opportunity areas can be found here..

The Derby Opportunity Area Action Plan can be downloaded here.

Working Together, Inspiring the Future

There are many brilliant ways local businesses can engage and support schools and thier students, take a look at how you could get involved here.

Careers & Enterprise Company

As part of their investment programme to boost social mobility and help thousands of young people into work, they have allocated £1million to the six government identified Opportunity Areas (including Derby).

The money is to be invested in local programmes that can demonstrate their effectiveness in working with young people in greatest need of support, including those with special education needs and disabilities and pupils at risk of being NEET (not in education, employment, or training).

UK businesses to tackle social mobility in government’s Opportunity Areas

Justine Greening and the Company announced plans on Wednesday (12th) to work with more than 40 national and local ‘cornerstone’ employers in 260+ secondary schools and colleges in the Opportunity Areas. With the support of our LEP partners in D2N2, Greater Cambridge/Greater Peterborough, Greater Manchester, Heart of the South West, Lancashire, Leeds City Region, New Anglia, Sheffield City Region, South East, Stoke & Staffordshire, York and North Yorkshire & East Riding we’ve secured backing from employers including Adecco, Butlins, KPMG, Michelin, Mantra Media, NatWest, PwC and Rolls Royce.

These businesses and business bodies including the CBI and FSB have committed to work together, with the support of a £2m government-backed fund, to guarantee that in each of the Opportunity Areas: all pupils aged 11-18 will have access to at least four inspiring encounters with the world of work and all secondary schools and colleges will have access to an Enterprise Adviser.

Businesses interested in becoming ‘cornerstone employers’ in Opportunity Areas can register on the Careers & Enterprise Company website.

Read Justine Greening’s full speech from The Sutton Trust event here.

Opportunity Area for Derby