Students refurbish a school’s old pavilion

Through our Schools Partnership programme, we have been connecting students at Northfleet Technology College with industry employers to highlight construction careers whilst refurbishing a disused school pavilion.

Our Schools Partnership programme builds long-term relationships between schools and local construction employers to ensure young people don’t miss out on the opportunities available to them in our industry. By creating close links with schools, we are able to identify students most at risk of falling out of education, employment and training and connect them to opportunities that could change their lives.

In December we joined forces with Northfleet Technology College to introduce students to the built environment sector. We delivered a series of activities, including assemblies to widen students’ knowledge of the construction industry and the careers within it. Students also had the chance to hear from inspiring volunteers about their journeys into construction. Following these activities, we engaged a group of students the school identified as difficult to reach. The project saw local construction contractors work with the students to refurbish their school's disused pavilion, turning the area into a construction hub. The project is ongoing, but the feedback has been great so far:

 “I really enjoyed it. It was something different, fun and it has changed my perspective of the industry.” Harrison

“The Construction Youth Trust has supported some of our difficult to reach students by engaging them in an exciting project with visible and tangible outcomes … The project is a combination in which trade and industry work hand in hand with the students. Not only to share their skills and knowledge, but to give first hand advice and answer questions from the trades industry that the students might have. Students mentioned that they see these sessions as growth opportunities and helping them shape their ideas of possible future prospects.” Cornelius Deyzel, Director of Learning Support at Northfleet Technology College

Some of the students have been inspired to enter the construction career and have been supported to achieve the OCNL accredited Level 1 Award in Health & safety in a Construction Environment. They are currently studying for the CSCS test.

We look forward to celebrating the end of first year of the project in July followed by summer work placements, where students will have the chance to experience a real work environment. We would also like to thank all volunteers involved for their support from BAM Construction, Willmott Dixon, Maybourne & Russell, GSE Civils, NH Etheridge, Rees Flooring, Clarion Housing and the Ebbsfleet Development Corporation.

The project was made possible by Colyer-Fergusson Charitable Trust’s grant to Construction Youth Trust with the purpose of inspiring and engaging young people at risk of becoming NEET, about opportunities in construction by offering expert training and guidance and facilitating meaningful interaction with employers.