School Development Support Agency

Supporting the development of the school-led improvement system

Pathways to Education

Pathways to Education

The Pathways to Education pilot programme is funded by the Community Foundation; a charitable organisation who want to reinvest money back into our community. As a result, the SDSA set up the Pathways to Education programme as a way of giving back to our Leicester city schools and the disadvantaged young people in our community.

"Aim: To offer an opportunity to take part in a mentoring programme for up to 12 young people who have the ability to achieve their educational potential and become positive members of their community but, because of adverse circumstances, they are at risk of failing to do so.
The programme is designed so that each young person will:
• develop a sense of belonging and purpose within the school and the community
• develop a positive self image and the skills needed to deal with life’s adversities so they become more resilient and determined individuals
Criteria: 12 students will be selected by the relevant member of the Senior Leadership Team to take part in this programme based on their academic potential and life circumstances.
As this is a pilot model, there are still ideas of which are being investigated in order to improve this work."

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SDSA's Role

"The SDSA's role consists of one 1-2-1 session with students every fortnight with the occasional group session depending on the group dynamic. 1-2-1’s are sometimes generic and other times personalised depending on the needs of individuals. Topics we may cover could be; lack of self-esteem and self-confidence, struggles in class, homework, bullying, time management, dealing with adversity outside of school, building resilience, revision etc.
The SDSA also bring the students together to take part in career events. These can include but is not limited to; STEM ambassador 1-2-1 sessions, visits to local colleges and individual visits to professional settings related to students’ choice of interest.
Mentors will work in close partnership with the school and will take a tailored approach to the programme. No two schools are the same because the needs of individuals are so varied which means this programme has the potential to be what is desired by the school and the young people we serve."

Project Impact

The impact is assessed by conducting a baseline assessment regarding attitudes to learning at the beginning of the academic year and repeating this at the end. As this is a pilot model, the ways in which we further assess impact is still work in progress but the SDSA is mindful that most of the feedback will be anecdotal due to the nature of the project.

Project Lead

Nicole Dishington

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