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Charity launches Schools Alumni Week to connect disadvantaged children with relatable role models

Charity launches Schools Alumni Week

UK Charity, Future First will offer schools the resources and support to develop alumni communities.

Education charity, Future First is launching ‘Schools Alumni Week,’ in a bid to raise awareness of the importance of role models for children from disadvantaged backgrounds. 

From 24th – 28th April 2023, Future First will campaign to encourage state schools and colleges in the UK to connect with their alumni community, to improve student motivation, confidence, and life chances.

Research has shown that almost half of the UK’s most disadvantaged pupils do not know anyone in a job they’d like to do. Future First’s work aims to tackle this by connecting young people with former students from similar backgrounds, to inspire them, and understand their true potential. 

In advance of Schools Alumni Week, the charity is now calling on educators, organisations, politicians, and the general public to realise the importance of relatable role models for all pupils, and how an alumni can be the perfect source of inspiration. The charity will use the week to make resources available to achieve this, enabling schools and colleges to engage with their former pupils and build an effective alumni community.

To promote the launch further, Future First has also released its film- ‘Someone Like Me’ that demonstrates the issues and the need for state school students to have access to role models they can relate and aspire to. (The film follows at the end of this release).

Many different forms of disadvantage, such as a child’s residential location, ethnicity, household income, being in care (or being a carer), having additional needs (SEND), or involvement in the criminal justice system, all impact a child’s opportunities. This means that so many young people are missing out on valuable experiences, prospects and invisible networks, that an alumni can bring. Schools Alumni Week has been launched to help address this.

Future First’s Partnerships and Development Director, Duncan Grant commented,

“A school alumni group is an untapped resource, ready and waiting to strengthen any school community, but many schools lack the knowledge, time or investment strength to develop and sustain one. However, we know that you can’t be what you can’t see, and so our aim is for every state educated pupil, to be able to access this network of relatable role models.”

“As well as a learning gap widened by the pandemic, and a rise in behavioural and attendance challenges, there is also evidence of older students’ having an increasingly negative outlook on their future career prospects. This year, Schools Alumni Week will encourage the development of a group capable of inspiring, motivating and improving confidence, at a time when it is most needed.”

In the run up to the week, schools and colleges can go to for more information on how to take part, including resources to use for learning materials. 


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