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Ambition 4 Building skills that help people get good jobs

Nottinghamshire needs a skilled workforce that can compete on a local and global stage, and we want our residents to have access to good-quality, rewarding, local jobs.

We also want to make sure everyone has the opportunity to realise their potential, whatever their age, ability or background. So, as well as children in early years settings, and young people in schools and colleges, we’ll support adult learning too.

Education is key in finding work, so we begin with schools. While 86% of Nottinghamshire children attend ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ schools, we know we can do more. We want every child in the County to attend a school with this rating – whether the setting is an academy or Council-owned. With supportive, nurturing and enjoyable places to learn, we know our children will flourish. But, we also face the challenge of ensuring there are enough places in good schools for children to attend, and for parents to have a say in where they send their child.

Whatever stage people are in their education, we’ll partner with schools, colleges, universities and training providers to ensure that the skills being taught match the needs of local businesses and new investors, while supporting the kinds of work people want to do. In other words, we’ll forge a clear pathway from training to good employment for everyone in Nottinghamshire. As one of the largest employers in the County, we can shape much of this through our own services and programmes, whether through work placements, apprenticeships or training opportunities. And, as with many of our ambitions, we’ll always focus our efforts where the need is greatest.

The Big Notts Survey

  • Over 1 in 4 people (28%) named better opportunities for education and training as one of the top things that would improve life in Nottinghamshire, after more affordable housing.
  • Just over 1 in 5 people (22%) said improved schools were a top priority for Nottinghamshire, with this being the top priority for young people (46%).
  • Just under half of young people (47%) named career aspirations as their biggest ambition for themselves over the next 10 years – by far their top priority.

Over the next four years we will:

We’ll carry on supporting – and challenging – the schools we maintain, especially those that aren’t yet judged ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted. We’ll also work with Multi-Academy Trusts, which aren’t Council-owned, to share good practices. These measures will help every young person in our communities have access to the best learning environments and give them a solid start in life.

Working alongside the Government and developers, we’ll address the growing demand for secondary school places in Gedling, Rushcliffe and Worksop and primary school places in East Leake, Bingham, Carlton, Colwick and Edwinstowe. We’ll also make sure places are being provided alongside new housing developments.

We’ll help our mainstream schools boost the number of places for pupils with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and provide a wider range of specialist education that meets children’s needs. We’ll ensure their education prepares them for adulthood, and will focus on building their skills, employability, and aspirations.                                                                           

We’ll work with partners to ensure the children and young people in our care are given the support they need to reach their potential and prepare for adulthood. This means advocating for extra educational support where needed, helping young people to access high quality careers advice, and connecting them with work experience opportunities.

We’ll carry on advocating to the Government for ongoing and increased funding for Nottinghamshire’s schools and pupils with SEND. This will ensure all our children and young people have access to the highest quality education for a fair start in life.

We’ll keep all Council-maintained school buildings and facilities in a good state of repair, and will expand any that need to accommodate extra pupils.

We’ll offer a wide adult learning curriculum through Inspire Learning and deliver a young people’s study programme for those aged 16-18. These steps will help adults and young people develop skills for life and provide family learning opportunities.

We’ll make it easier for people to access the training and support needed for better, more rewarding jobs – whether children, young people, or those progressing in their careers. We’ll also work with Nottinghamshire employers to help them land and keep the right talent, and increase the number of apprenticeships on offer across the County. Whether people are just starting out or facing employment barriers, we’ll give them the skills and motivation they need for a fulfilling career.

We’ll provide employment support services to help those with social care needs to access training, find jobs and stay in employment, opening up opportunities for the future.

We’ll develop our libraries into community, cultural and learning hubs through providing the events, courses and activities needed to bring people together and develop important skills. This will benefit all our residents, but especially young children, giving them a strong foundation in language, reading and motor skills.

As one of the largest employers in Nottinghamshire, we’re working to:

  • open up training and development opportunities in our services and programmes, like work experience placements and apprenticeships
  • connect with local further education providers to offer internships
  • continue our highly successful Graduate Development Programme.

Success means:

  • All of Nottinghamshire schools are classified as “good” or “outstanding” by Ofsted
  • Fewer young people are not in education, employment or training (NEET)
  • People leave education with better qualifications and skills
  • Educational outcomes for vulnerable children improve
  • Vulnerable children are less likely to miss education
  • More people are in higher paid and skilled jobs
  • Children and young people are provided with sufficient early years provision and school places in their local communities
  • More young adults with social care needs are supported to access employment, education, training or volunteering
  • Our libraries are well used
  • More high-quality placements and training opportunities within the Council for local people.

In 2022-23, to achieve this, we will deliver the following actions:

We will develop new primary schools in Bingham and East Leake to open by September 2023 with high environmental standards.

We will expand the number of specialist school places at Newark Orchard Special School and Derrymount Special School for autumn term 2022. In addition, a partnership between King Edward Primary and Stubbin Woods Special School will provide additional primary specialist places.

We will lead by example by increasing the number of supported internships and inclusive apprenticeship placements for children with SEND within the local authority and facilitate supported internships with local businesses. These internships will support those with SEND to achieve their aspirations.

We will work in partnership to support improved education outcomes in Mansfield and Ashfield through the Department for Education funded Mansfield and Ashfield place-based project, including convening a Mansfield and Ashfield headteachers summit in June.

We will promote local employment opportunities through expanding our Nottinghamshire Opportunity website.

We will work with partners and the wider community to increase the number of adults with disabilities in
employment, education, training or volunteering.

To find out more about what we’ve got planned for the current year, you can read our full Annual Delivery Plan 2022/23 [PDF].

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