Hastings named in multi-million pound education scheme

Justine Greening MP
Justine Greening MP

Hastings is to be named as one of 12 Opportunity Areas in a multimillion pound government scheme aimed at promoting social mobility.

Education secretary Justine Greening MP is expected to make the announcement today (Wednesday January 18).

The aim of the scheme is to give disadvantaged children the opportunity to achieve their full potential while encouraging the business world to recognise and nurture the skills of youngsters from all walks of life.

The Department for Education (DfE) is expected to increase the scheme's funding from £60million to £72million.

The 12 Opportunity Areas will also have priority access to other support, including the £75million Teaching and Leadership Innovation Fund, while Ms Greening is expected to announce a new £3.5million programme to establish Research Schools in Hastings and the other 11 Opportunity Areas.

She said: "As the Prime Minister has set out, we are facing a moment of great change as a nation. With our departure from the European Union, we will need to define an ambitious new role for ourselves in the world.

"For Britain to succeed we must be a country where everyone has a fair chance to go as far as their talent and their hard work will allow.

"Education is at the heart of that ambition, and is central to breaking down the barriers to social mobility that too many face in our country today.

“I want to see more disadvantaged young people attending the very best universities, winning places on apprenticeships, entering the top professions, and progressing through the most rewarding careers – and I want employers to do more to draw out the potential and talents of all.”

The origianl six Opportunity Areas were announced in October 2016. Known as social mobility ‘coldspots’, they were Blackpool, Derby, Norwich, Oldham, Scarborough, and West Somerset.

The second six are: Hastings, Bradford, Doncaster, Fenland & East Cambridgeshire, Ipswich, and Stoke.

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