Blackpool Aspirations Week …….some reflections!

34032285923_a4d465bfd4_zNow the dust has settled and the schools who joined us for Blackpool Aspirations Week have returned from a well earned half term break it’s time to reflect on the events, all that was achieved and plan for the future!

When we first had the idea of ‘5 schools in 5 days’ building on the success of our Primary Futures launch at St Nicholas C of E Primary School   and a great subsequent event at Moorpark Primary School little did we realise the size of the challenge but also the impact that would be had on the children from all the schools we worked with.

There is no doubt that the drive and leadership of the headteachers and senior staff from Bispham Endowed C of E Primary School, Hawes Side Academy, Stanley Primary School, St John Vianney Catholic Primary and Anchorsholme Academy was a critical element in the success of all that followed. It was great to see how they worked with their staff and members of the Primary Futures team to take a series of ideas based on previous experience and turned them into events and activities to inspire their children and communities. There were also many unsung heroines and heroes working behind the scenes at our partner schools who must not be forgotten …………. the office staff, catering staff and even the car park team to name but a few.

Then there were the volunteers without whom Primary Futures would not exist. It was always going to be a challenge to find enough volunteers from the locality and then encourage them to join us during the week in one or more schools. We ended up with nearly 150 which was stunning! There is something very special about Blackpool, the business community and those who are so keen to give back to the children to provide such inspiration. We even had a some volunteers who joined us every day. Remarkable!

Support from the Education and Employers team based in London was another key element. They were at the end of a phone offering advice and encouragement and also set up the experimental SharePoint to enable us to all monitor the volunteers who were offering their support. This also enabled the schools to make direct contact between themselves and their volunteers using the messaging system, creating relationships which are so important. A volunteer who is fully briefed with full details about the event and their role is one who hopefully will come back for more in the future!

You can check out more about the week and see our photos here

Of course the proof of the pudding is in the eating. Inspiring children and helping to raise their aspirations bringing real relevance to their learning is what we are all about. Did we achieve this? You only have to ask the children for the answer 🙂 Maybe it’s time your school joined us?




By Steve Iredale

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