Youngsters from Howes School with (from left):  Matthew Kates (Teaching Assistant), Kelly-Anne Lewis

Member Article

Youngsters get a sneak preview of new scheme in Coventry

A Coventry primary school has had a sneak preview of a major new city development as part of a move to link education and employment.

Around 30 year 5 pupils from Howes Primary School in Cheylesmore were given a guided tour of the new £37 million Coventry University Science and Health Building in Much Park Street.

Coventry City Council is working closely with companies and schools to link education to employment and BAM Construction, contractor on the University scheme, are among the first to be involved.

It signed up to the Council’s ‘Business Charter for Social Responsibility’ when it was launched last year, committing to help achieve economic, social and environmental benefits for the community as well as the business.

“Winning the Science and Health Building contract has enabled us to work with the council to develop a community engagement plan,” said BAM Project Manager Alan Bell. “We’re linking education to employment by working closely with local schools so pupils can visit our site to find out more about what takes place in a construction environment.”

The pupils, who were talked through the construction process, the project timetable to show what the finished building will look like, were joined by Councillor Kevin Maton, Cabinet Member for Business, Enterprise and Employment, and Kelly-Anne Lewis, Coventry University Director of Marketing and Communications.

The pupils were also armed with some quiz sheets cleverly linking various aspects of the site to class subjects including History, Science and Maths.

The two-year project will consolidate the Faculty of Health and Life Science’s existing teaching and research facilities into the new five-storey building that will house state-of-the-art healthcare simulation, research and ‘super-lab’ environments.

The world-class facilities will include a mock operating theatre, fully-equipped ambulance, and community house to demonstrate the latest developments in assistive living technologies.

The super laboratory will be capable of accommodating up to 240 students for teaching and research in biological and analytical sciences. A running track, sports therapy clinic and facilities for food and environmental sciences will also be on site.

Cllr Kevin Maton, Cabinet Member for Business, Enterprise and Employment, said:

“It is vital that young people in our schools have a good understanding of the range of career options available to them and an awareness of the skills that will be required for particular careers.

“The provision of both site visits for pupils, and visits by the developer into schools to run workshops, helps young people make informed choices, and makes the transition from education to employment that much smoother.

“I’m delighted that BAM are offering this exciting opportunity to local school children as part of their Business Charter for Social Responsibility accreditation.”

Phil Eves, Education and Skills Co-ordinator at BAM, said: “We have tried to focus on linking learning opportunities to the curriculum, which helps young people learn skills in new ways so they can start to see how what they learn in school is used and valued in the workplace.

“Our sessions help young people build relationships, raise their ambitions and start to prepare them for the world of work. BAM are delighted to be able to work with Coventry City Council and Coventry University to maximise the social value that this project brings to the City.”

The build is scheduled to take until December 2016 to complete meaning the pupils will have further visits to the site to watch progress and understand the many different stages of the construction.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Matt Joyce .

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