BCC: Businesses can improve educational experiences

BCC: Businesses can improve educational experiences

As business and education leaders come together at the first Business and Education Summit, the British Chambers of Commerce is highlighting the benefits of partnerships between schools and businesses.

There report shows the vast majority of educational establishments (88%) partnering with businesses said the most important benefit was improved outcomes for their pupils.  

The education leaders surveyed also stated that employer engagement has a clear benefit for their pupils, including: greater awareness of the soft skills that businesses value (74%); increased motivation in lessons (73%); better careers information (52%); and lessons which are more relevant and connected to the world of work (46%). 

Business leaders reported that the main reasons for partnering with a school were to demonstrate corporate social responsibility (43%), to identify future employees (38%), and to increase awareness of different jobs and career paths (35%). 

However, both business and education leaders reported a number of barriers preventing them from building lasting and effective partnerships. For businesses and educators respectively, this included staff time (53% 64%), and administrative burdens (36% 41%). Businesses also cited cost as a factor (38%) while some educators identified a lack of interest from business (42%).  

John Longworth, BCC director general, said: “Long-lasting and effective partnerships between schools and employers improve young people’s job prospects and provide businesses with the skills they need.

“Our survey highlights the many benefits of employer engagement for businesses, educators and pupils, and there are already some great examples of effective school and business partnerships across the country. 

“It’s time for business and education to stand together and make skills shortages a thing of the past.”       

Louise Bennett, chief executive of the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce, said: “We are delighted to support the British Chambers of Commerce in its efforts to Bridge the Gap between business and education.

“Our Chamber has been working very closely with the BCC on this and has held two events in the past year to look at how we can help to tackle the issue. We have submitted evidence from those events to ensure the views of the many business, civic and education leaders we have spoken to.

“We have several delegates attending the summit because we feel that this is an event of great significance when it comes to addressing the needs of business and, indeed, our young people.”