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FIFE SCHOOLS ENGAGE WITH LOCAL BUSINESSES AS THEY ENCOURAGE ENTERPRISE SKILLS AS PART OF CURRICULUM

Findings from a recent survey undertaken by Fife Council Economic Development’s Culture of Enterprise Framework, found that over half of schools in the region are engaging with local businesses in a bid to encourage enterprise skills in young people.

Positively, of those 133 respondents to the survey, 57 per cent actively engage with local businesses, whilst over 70 per cent of teachers confirmed that enterprise activities are being delivered in schools. That delivery takes place as part of the school curriculum for almost three quarters of responding schools, whilst a further 23 per cent deliver enterprise as an extra-curricular activity.

These findings have been welcomed by Councillor Altany Craik, Fife Council’s Convener - Economy, Tourism, Strategic Planning & Transportation Committee. He said:

“It is extremely encouraging that schools and their pupils are engaging in enterprising activities, as well as with local businesses from a young age. With so many career options available, being able to offer basic enterprise skills to primary school-aged children, which can then be developed in secondary school, will help our young people succeed in the world of work.

“Encouraging entrepreneurship in children, focusing as the Culture of Enterprise Framework does, on developing creativity, resourcefulness as well as independence and leadership, will equip them and give them the confidence to consider a career in enterprise.”

Of those surveyed, 85 per cent of teachers agreed that Fife Council Economic Development’s activities align well with the Curriculum for Excellence. They also added that they felt the value in engaging with these enterprise programmes to empower children to lead their own learning, to learn that they can make a sustainable difference to their community and help to develop a broad range of real-life transferable skills.

Councillor Craik added:

“It’s welcoming too, that Fife’s teachers are actively engaged with the Culture of Enterprise Framework and that they see the value in teaching enterprise skills as it provides real-life context to the curriculum and gives pupils essential skills for the world of work.”

Another outcome of the survey is that teachers are seeking more virtual CPD opportunities from Fife Council Economic Development’s Culture of Enterprise Framework, to learn more about the programmes and support it can offer.

Sarah Pitcairn, Art and Design Teacher at Viewforth High School, said:

“Our future is reliant on the next generations, and high-quality teaching that incorporates entrepreneurship will be a critical part of our young people’s achievement in the world of work. Through entrepreneurship our young people get to enhance and build upon their soft skills such as teamwork, leadership, time management and problem solving, which is essential for them to develop to thrive in the ever-changing labour market.

“Entrepreneurship teaching doesn’t necessarily provide answers but supports learners to identify the right questions to help them further their success and hopefully lead them to a positive destination following their time in education. It helps to encourage pupils out of their comfort zones, inspire learners to think creatively and be confident enough to take ownership over their own learning.”

Fife Council’s Economic Development Team strives to link education with industry through its Culture of Enterprise Framework, which delivers several enterprise programmes, to primary and secondary schools across Fife. The programmes, including 4 to Fortune, The Enterprise Game and Meet the Business, are designed to develop enterprising young people with increased commercial awareness, decision making, problem solving and communication skills, whilst inspiring the next generation of entrepreneurs.

Ann Camus, Enterprise and Business Development Manager at Fife Council Economic Development, said:

“The responses to the survey will help our Culture of Enterprise Team to shape the future of its programme and offering, to ensure that we continue to add value, can personalise the support based on the school and its individual preferences and requirements, as well as fully support schools in their enterprise journeys. In addition, we’re also keen to create a supportive community for teachers to share best practice and ideas, as we commit to fostering a culture which both values and encourages enterprise.”

For more information on Fife Council’s Culture of Enterprise Framework, please email: fifemeansbusiness@fife.gov.uk

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