About Business Class

Business Class is BITC’s flagship education programme because it creates effective and mutually beneficial partnerships between schools and businesses.

This matters because repeated, in-depth engagement between employers and students can help prevent social background predicting a young person's success at school and beyond.

Over 450 secondary schools have been involved in Business Class, supported by 1,000 businesses (33% of whom are SMEs), impacting on 140,000 young people across the UK.

How Business Class Works

BITC’s Education Managers go through a detailed Needs Analysis with school senior leaders. During this process the school’s objectives and priorities related to four key areas are identified. These are; Leadership and Governance, Curriculum, Enterprise and Employability, Wider Issues.

Businesses interested in joining the programme go through a similar process with an Education Manager to identify what they would like to achieve through partnering with a school.

Suitable school-business matches can then be identified and partnered. With the support of their Education Manager they then create an Action Plan for their partnership, this sets out their objectives for the partnership and the activities they will deliver to achieve them.

The results

The Business Class process is a school-business partnership with shared goals, where both sides clearly understand what the other wants to achieve and there is a clear plan for how they will accomplish their objectives.

Once established Business Class partnerships continue to receive ongoing support from their Education Manager who helps them plan, deliver and review their activities. Education Managers have unique resources that schools and businesses can use as well as access to BITC’s wider network to leverage additional support when needed. The Education Manager meets with partnerships once a term and undertakes an annual review to ensure partnerships are achieving their ambitions.

Partnerships also get support from their local Business Class Cluster. The Cluster is a unique aspect of Business Class that enables greater positive impact for the businesses, schools and the young people who attend them.

Schools and business partners in a geographic area are grouped together into a cluster. Convened once a term by their Education Manager, they share best practice, identify common challenges and collaborate for greater mutual benefit.

View answers to Frequently Asked Questions for schools and businesses

Business Class around the world

The framework is also delivered in Australia by the Australian Business and Community Network (ABCN).