Wales ranks behind England, Scotland and Northern Ireland in GCSE results in science, maths and reading.
More than 70% of pupils receiving free school meals did not achieve the expected GCSE grades at age 16.
Engaging with education is a business issue. Companies and organisations across Wales need skilled young people who are ready forthe world of work. Young people want to get access to jobs and future careers which meet their aspirations. Business can support these shared aspirations by engaging with education and supporting young people across the education spectrum.
Therefore, employer engagement with education is a vital element of supporting young people at school and beyond. There is both a social and business imperative for young people to have greater opportunity to engage with employers. Research shows that business has a critical part to play: young people who undertake four or more employer engagement activities are five times less likely to be NEET.
The NPTC Group of Colleges Education Award will recognise school-business programmes that are working to ensure that all young people, regardless of postcode or family income, are able to build successful working lives.
Successful entries will be able to demonstrate:
Businesses and schools working in partnership for mutual benefit
Reach and be able to evidence that the programme positively impacts on young people and communities who need it the most