October 2014 marked the launch of our newest corporate partnership with Barclays, the international financial services provider. Through Generation Education: Inspiring STEM Futures, we will work together to address the shortage of teachers delivering Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects in schools that serve disadvantaged pupils.
Barclays’ support of the programme is part of its citizenship strategy, which is focused on building the next generation of achievers through its ‘5 Million Young Futures’ ambition. This is a commitment to invest £250m in programmes focused on supporting five million young people in developing the enterprise, employability and financial skills they need to achieve their goals and become financially independent.
Degree holders who are qualified to teach STEM subjects are in short supply nationwide and those who have the skills to be great teachers are an even smaller group. This lack of teachers will only serve to worsen the STEM graduate shortage. Without inspirational teachers, pupils may never discover their interest in STEM subjects, let alone be able to carry this through to a career.
With support from Barclays – in the form of the largest one-off investment we’ve ever received – we will be able to almost double our recruitment of science and maths teachers, training 533 STEM teachers over two cohorts. These teachers will ultimately give more than 80,000 young people access to a high-quality STEM education. This programme will also help address the increasing need for STEM skills in the job market.
Barclays’ support doesn’t stop there – its highly engaged employees are actively seeking opportunities to work both with our partner schools and with our teachers. Over the course of the partnership, Barclays volunteers will host several Careers Insights sessions, take part in our Guest Teacher Programme and support our participants and ambassadors as coaches. Barclays will also work with us to expand the reach of its LifeSkills programme, aimed at equipping young people with the skills they need to succeed in the world of work.
We are very excited to have Barclays’ support and, together, we aim not only to inspire young people from diverse backgrounds to pursue careers in STEM subjects, but also provide them with access to high quality STEM education – something every young person deserves to experience.