What a difference a day makes…

…Just 24 little hours at the UEA over 5 days in the run up to Easter studying English, Maths or possibly even both!

We took the learning from this great collaborative project that our friends in the Ipswich Opportunity Area have implemented over the last year and had a go here in Norwich. In Ipswich schools have reported that students aiming for a 4 or 5 that took part have improved their grades in school assessments significantly.

Some of our best English and Maths teachers volunteered their services to come up with a sequence of high quality lessons that target the key knowledge and skills students need to gain a strong pass in these key subjects.

The Maths team – Richard Moore and John Dempsey from Sewell Park Academy, Lead Teacher Mo Ali, and Holly, both from City of Norwich School.

Year 11 students arrived from 7 of our NOA schools – Open Academy, Jane Austen College, Hewett Academy, City of Norwich School, Sewell Park Academy, Notre Dame High School and UTC to do Maths in the morning or English in the afternoon, with a number of students committing the day to do both.

The first session has got us off to a great start, with teachers and students agreeing that its been really useful to attack these subjects in a fresh setting, with a different approach and with the chance to meet new people and see the UEA. William Bach, a student from Hewett said: “I’ve found this experience really rewarding, and its given me lots of reminders of key things ready for my exams soon, it was quite easy to get to the UEA thanks to the bus passes we were given”.

So the ingredients of a day that makes a difference?

  • 90 students keen to nail those pass grades
  • 4 Maths teachers, and 3 English teachers with some great resources
  • 2 members of pastoral staff to keep everything running safely and smoothly
  • 8 NOA headteachers collaborating, planning and sharing across schools
  • A free bus pass for the day
  • Pizza (of course!)
  • A tour of the campus at lunch time
  • Some superb amabassadors provided by City of Norwich School and the UEA

Norwich students help shape their future

Young people from Norwich learnt about social mobility by visiting their peers in Southend-on-Sea to discover how education is helping them fulfil their potential.

The group of 35 Norwich pupils, from Year 7 to Year 12, joined a ‘learning buddy’ in classes and took part in careers activities in Southend – an area that has made rapid progress in social mobility since 2016.

They also held discussions with students, teachers, support staff and council representatives when they visited Eastwood Academy, South Essex Further Education College and Southend Adult Community College.

Pupils will now present their learning to key stakeholders including headteachers and the Department for Education’s Opportunity Area (OA) Partnership Board to help them improve outcomes for young people in Norwich.

Tim Coulson, chair of the Norwich OA board, said: “The trip to Southend was designed by the Youth Board as part of their work to ensure local young people have a voice in the Opportunity Area programme and to bring back learning from an area that has achieved rapid progress in social mobility.

“Norwich OA schools and colleges identified students as young leaders from their school who would most benefit from the cultural and educational experiences and those who were passionate about making a difference in the lives of all young people in Norwich.”

Ryan Bedwell-Woods, member of the Norwich Opportunity Area Youth Board, said: “The Youth Board students have come away with lots of ideas of how to improve social mobility in Norwich to help them and future generations. I feel inspired that as young people in Norwich we can make a real difference to the lives of others in this way.”

Pupils learnt about Eastwood Academy’s Student Leadership Team and the responsibilities they take on within the school as part of the three-day trip from Wednesday March 20 to Friday March 22.

They met the Deputy and Vice Principals of South Essex FE college to understand more about how outcomes for disadvantaged students are championed across the college as well as hearing about the support students receive around future career pathways.

The pupils, from University Technical College Norwich, Open Academy, Notre Dame High School, The Hewett Academy, City of Norwich School and Sewell Park Academy, also met Community Relations and Consultation and Engagement officers from Southend-on-Sea Council to find out about its ambitions for the area and ‘Southend 2050’ – a public consultation about the kind of place people want Southend to be and what needs to be done to get there.

Students who helped create the ‘Norwich 2040 City Vision’ met with Southend’s Youth Mayor and Youth Council Chancellor to understand more about the ‘Southend 2050’ engagement programme and how young people have been involved.

They also visited London to explore the city and took group selfies in front of cultural spots, interesting architecture and places they would love to work in the future.  

Research shows that learning through arts and culture can have a positive impact on health, educational attainment and future employment and the pupils were given the opportunity to watch West End show Les Miserables as part of the experience to help raise their aspirations for the future.

We are recruiting in the Norwich OA…

Community Communication Champion 40407 CHHE

Woodside Centre, Norwich

£21,589 – £23,836 per annum

37 hours per week

Fixed term contract until 31 August 2020

An exciting opportunity has arisen with Norfolk County Council’s Achievement and Early Years Service to be part of the delivery of Norwich’s Opportunity Area programme.

We are looking for a Community Communication Champion to support the development, roll out and monitoring of projects that support improvements in young children’s speech, language and communication. This role involves working with early education providers in the Norwich Opportunity Area as well as other partner organisations.

For an informal discussion regarding this vacancy please contact Ashley Cater (Communication Champion Project Manager) on 07450718912 or ashley.cater@norfolk.gov.uk

For further details and how to apply:

Online: http://www.norfolk.gov.uk/jobsandcareers 

Please quote job reference: 40407 CHHE

Closing date: 17 March 2019

Our latest offers to schools in the Norwich OA

Schools will receive an updated list of “Offers in a Nutshell” in early February. This is an outline of current funded programmes that schools in Norwich can take up, with links to further details and contact details of providers and project managers. Some of the offers are time-limited with a deadline for sign-up, so take a look as soon as you can!

Are you a provider that wants to work with the Norwich Opportunity Area?


The following opportunities are now closed-


We are looking for providers who can work with primary schools to set up and deliver a programme of regular engagement activities for parents and community members.  Activities will engage parents in conversations around aspirations for their children and approaches they can take to talk about the variety of careers options at home.

Support for children who are at risk of exclusion-


We are looking for providers that can offer short term alternative provision to children from infant schools up to secondary schools that are at risk of exclusion, and require a short intervention away from school to help them reintegrate in the long term.  Schools and organisations within and outside the Opportunity Area that can offer suitable provision are welcome to apply.

Support for families of children at risk of exclusion-


We are looking for a provider to advise and support families in approaches to help their child when they find the school environment and expectations challenging; and to help develop more positive relationships between school and home where these have broken down


Application to be included on a preferred list of Providers to deliver World of Work Programmes-