Edge continues to support the Studio Schools Trust as the first Studio Schools open their doors to pupils. A joint venture between Edge and the Young Foundation, the Trust aims to drive forward innovation in the education system. Studio Schools are a new concept designed for 14-19 year olds of all abilities, with a focus on personalisation, practical hands-on learning and real work.
Working closely with local employers Studio Schools offer a range of academic and vocational qualifications in line with the national curriculum, including GCSEs in English, Maths and Science, as well as paid work placements linked directly to local employment opportunities. Major employers such as GlaxoSmithKline, Balfour Beatty, BBC and Sony are working with Studio Schools across the country.
Studio Schools are small schools for 300 students, with each student assigned a personal coach.They feel more like a workplace than a school, with a 9am-5pm working day and year round opening, where students wear business dress rather than a traditional uniform. The Studio School curriculum is delivered through Enterprise Projects commissioned by a range of partners such as employers, charities and community organisations, to ensure that learning is rooted in real world experiences. Students gain a broad range of employability and life skills through the CREATE (Communication, Relating to people, Enterprise, Applied skills, Thinking skills and Emotional intelligence) skills framework, and have the option to go on to university, further training, and into employment.
There are currently six Studio Schools open in England, with a further twelve planned to open in September 2012. All Studio Schools have enterprise and entrepreneurship at their heart, and many have additional specialisms linked to their local employer base. Specialisms include: international food and travel, gaming and digital futures, science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), health and social care and the creative industries. Many Studio Schools plan to house start up businesses on site and provide incubator/office space for local companies or public sector bodies.
Edge is delighted to be involved in this innovative and alternative approach to education which equips young people with the skills and qualifications for a successful future whether via employment or progression to further and higher education.
Studio Schools currently open:
- Kirklees Creative and Media Studio School (2010) – Huddersfield
- Barnfield Studio School (2010) – Luton
- Green Hub Studio School (2011) – Maidstone, Kent –focussing on enterprise and the environment
- Durham Studio School (2011) – Durham
- Harpurhey Studio School (2011) – Manchester
- Stephenson Studio School (2011) - Coalville, Leicestershire
Schools opening in 2012:
- Hyndburn Studio School – Accrington
- The Studio, Liverpool – focussing on gaming and digital futures
- International Food and Travel Studio – Bradford
- Da Vinci Studio of Science and Engineering (STEM) – Stevenage
- Hull Studio School – Hull
- Discovery Studio School – Stoke – focussing on construction/refurbishment and new technologies
- Midland Studio College – Hinckley – focussing on engineering and health and social care
- Ockendon Studio School – Thurrock
- Tendring Enterprise Studio School – Clacton
- Fulham Enterprise Studio – London – focusing on construction, business enterprise, entertainment and media
- Parkside Studio College – Hayes
- LeAF Studio School - Bournemouth
Jan Hodges is chief executive of Edge, the independent education foundation dedicated to raising the status of technical, practical and vocational learning
For further information about Studio Schools that are open, or set to open, see: http://www.studioschoolstrust.org/node/124
The Department for Education is currently considering applications for schools to open in 2013 – for details of the applications submitted see: http://studioschoolstrust.org/open-school/2013-applications