The RSA has published its report and recommendations based on its Raising the Bar inquiry into under achievement in Suffolk Schools.
Its approach in establishing nine solutions panels indicated a promising break with the traditional ‘done too’ approach that is so common in these instances. By locating the problems and the solution so firmly in Suffolk it signalled one of the most important elements of the solution, that everyone in Suffolk, people and organisations, have a responsibility to help turn the situation around. This line is equally supported by Deborah Cadman, Chief Executive of Suffolk County Council.
‘We believe that schools now need to open their doors more routinely and purposefully to a wider range of partners, engaging with employers to enable children and young people to have a richer understanding of, and engagement in, the world of work, and to involve the wider community, especially parents, in valuing education and raising
children’s achievement’. Mathew Taylor CEO RSA
Cultural Intelligence, working with local Fellows of the RSA took the initiative in December 2012 forming Shout Out Suffolk to ensure that the voice of young people is present in the debate. Working with academics from University Campus Suffolk (UCS) we developed a programme of consultation receiving input from more than 500 young people and produced a report which was submitted as part of the evidence to the RSA inquiry.
Unlike the RSA inquiry, the focus of Shout Out Suffolk is about what we can do to support young people in Suffolk rather than what can be done to fix Suffolk schools. Both contribute to the same outcome.
Now Shout Out Suffolk is moving into a new phase where we will be developing and delivering projects to address some of the issues identified in our report. The next meeting is 6pm on 18th June at Coffee Republic on the docks in Ipswich. All welcome.
At Cultural Intelligence we will also be considering how we can use our skills to help young people and communities work collaboratively to help raise attainment.
‘No School an Island’ makes many recommendations with a strong focus on collaboration between schools and other organisations and parents. This is to be warmly welcomed. One would never expect to love all of the recommendations coming out of an inquiry like this but on the whole, we think there is some valuable work to be done off the back of this report.