Fronts for the trade war

28th November 1997 at 00:00
The theme of this year's National Education Business Activity Week, which ran from November 10 to 16, was "partnership pays". Events up and down the country showed the variety of links between businesses and schoolchildren of all ages: * Infants from Llwynu school in Abergavenny, Gwent, visited their local Safeways store, where they had a behind-the-scenes look at commercial cake-making and design as part of the school's project on baking.

* Pupils at two Huddersfield schools looked at ways of making their town centre more attractive. Futuretown - an initiative organised by the Huddersfield Business Association and backed by Boots, the chemists, and Sainsbury's, the supermarket chain - gave pupils at Colne Valley and Shelley high schools the chance to put their proposals to business leaders and the town's mayor. Colne Valley's proposal for a end-of-millennium party was voted winner.

* Children from 11 primary schools in Wake-field spent a day at Ferrybridge C power station in Pontefract for the launch of the Weather Reports scheme, a two-year project sponsored by Powergen which gives schools the equipment to set up their own mini weather stations. Each school draws up an action plan: the most innovative use of the equipment will win an advanced Metrostat weather monitoring system.

* An unusual partnership between pupils at Clay Cross County Infant School in Chesterfield and Heron Educational Ltd, a local company, came to fruition when scaled-down shops designed by the children went on sale. Thechildren created models of different shop fronts, including a hairdressers, a fish and chip shop, and a sweet shop, which are now being produced by Heron for use in role-playing classes.

* Year 3 children arriving at the North Tyne-side EBP office for a one-day media challenge project to produce their own newspaper found themselves in the middle of a live news story: a body had been discovered outside the building. The mock accident was staged by Northumbria police as part of a training exercise. The children grilled detectives at a press conference before writing up the story for the front page of their newspaper. The challenges, run by North Tyneside EBP in association with the Newcastle Chronicle, have proved an exciting way of developing literacy and information technology skills among local junior children.

* On Humberside, primary school children went to the UK Waste site in Stoneferry to see how household rubbish is recycled. The project, organised by Groundwork, an environmental group, ends with a fashion show of recycled clothes next month.

* Massey Ferguson, the tractor manufacturers, welcomed children from Foleshill C of E Primary school in Coventry (see picture story, page IX), who interviewed older members of staff about the bombing of the city during the Second World War, visited original air-raid shelters at the factory and compared maps from the time with their contemporary equivalents to see how the city was changed by the Blitz.

* Birmingham's Careers and Education Business Partnership has designed a series of four Curriculum Trails - guided tours of British Telecom, Dillons, Midland Bank and the Royal Mail, which give pupils a glimpse behind the scenes of a large company.

* Grampian EBP arranged for the Impacttheatre company to tour schools in Aberdeenshire. The company performed a 40-minute play - a spoof on the television series The 'X' Files - which took a humourous but informative look at post-16 options.

* Sue Buchanan from Banchory primary in Grampian completed the Enterprising Infants course in Aberdeen, becoming the 2,000th teacher to receive Enterprise training. The School Enterprise Programme has been available to teachers in Scotland since 1995.

* The week gained the royal seal of approval when HRH the Prince of Wales launched the Hive - a Web site for young people - during a visit to Newquay Tretherras School in Cornwall. The Hive is an interactive database of information on study, work and training choices.

* At "Developing 2020 Vision", a parliamentary reception hosted by Stephen Byers, minister for school standards, MPs and businesspeople heard John Botten, chairman of the National Education Business Partnership Network, outline his plans for the future of the network.

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