Business Working with Education. A Statement of Priorities for Partnerships between Business and Victorian Government Schools

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1 Business Working with Education A Statement of Priorities for Partnerships between Business and Victorian Government Schools

2 Published by the Communications Division for System Policy Division Office for Policy, Research and Innovation Department of Education and Early Childhood Development Melbourne Published September 2010 State of Victoria (Department of Educationand Early Childhood Development) 2010 The copyright in this document is owned by the State of Victoria (Department of Education and Early Childhood Development), or in the case of some materials, by third parties (third party materials). No part may be reproduced by any process except in accordance with the provisions of the Copyright Act 1968, the National Education Access Licence for Schools (NEALS) (see below) or with permission. An educational institution situated in Australia which is not conducted for profit, or a body responsible for administering such an institution may copy and communicate the materials, other than third party materials, for the educational purposes of the institution. Authorised by the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, 2 Treasury Place, East Melbourne, Victoria, ISBN Also published on

3 Contents Message from the Minister 2 Executive Summary 3 Benefits of partnership 4 Priority areas for engagement 5 1. Opportunity 6 2. Excellence 8 3. Leadership Community Economy and Society Victorian Business Working with Education Foundation Getting Involved Now 16 Support and Advice 16 1 Business Working with Education Business Working with Education 1

4 Message from the Minister The Victorian community has a long and proud history of working together for the betterment of all Victorians. In education, there are many examples of business and schools working together in partnership to collectively improve student outcomes. Business education partnerships have involved business organisations of all sizes, and across many sectors, in activities that have been mutually beneficial to schools, teachers, parents, students and the businesses involved. This work has often had broader social and economic benefits. For example, business has worked with education to establish real-world learning experiences for students, pathways into careers and further education, and scholarships to support students from disadvantaged backgrounds. Business Working with Education delivers on the Government s Blueprint commitment to support long-term partnerships between business and education. This Statement provides a platform to build on past success by outlining the Government s five priority areas for business and education to connect, and by enhancing the ways in which partnerships can be established. It is intended to provide guidance to business and schools to identify options for developing partnerships which focus on opportunity, excellence, leadership, community, economy and society. I look forward to working with business and schools to implement Business Working with Education through partnerships which help Victoria s students learn and succeed. Hon Bronwyn Pike MP Minister for Education Minister for Skills and Workforce Participation 2 Business Working with Education

5 Executive Summary Victorian government schools and business have a successful history of partnerships to improve the learning outcomes of Victoria s children and young people. Business partnerships with education have provided great benefits to students and, by clarifying where and how to partner, we can continue to further enhance the achievement of all children and young people in this state. Business Working with Education sets out the priority areas for partnership between business and education, and outlines the ways business and education partnerships can be established. These partnerships are not intended to replace the Government s ongoing responsibility to provide an excellent public education system, but rather to provide schools and businesses with opportunities to undertake activities that will enrich the learning and development of everyone involved. The Statement of Priorities is intended to provide guidance to business and schools on how to identify such opportunities for partnerships. Business partnerships are considered an integral part of a whole-ofcommunity involvement in the development of a world-class education system in Victoria. The Victorian Government s Blueprint for Education and Early Childhood Development (2008) strongly supports partnerships between business and schools. In particular, the Government is seeking to support those partnerships that offer longer-term engagement with schools in the provision of learning and development outcomes, consistent with the policies and objectives of the Government. Business Working with Education 3

6 This Statement is concerned with the application of corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities within the education system, and does not apply to the normal for-profit business activity between schools and commercial providers. The Statement is intended to complement the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development s existing guidelines on appropriate arrangements between schools and business. Benefits of partnership Partnerships between business and schools benefit both parties. Partnerships with schools can provide many benefits to business: Business can gain a level of community involvement and connection, which allows them to demonstrate their commitment to CSR, thus boosting their reputation in the local community. CSR is commonly described as a commitment to operate in a way that takes into account not only the financial implications of business decisions, but the social and economic impact it has on the community. Partnerships assist business to recruit, develop and retain a quality, multi-skilled workforce by offering real-world volunteering and support opportunities to enrich the lives of business professionals. School and business partnerships provide a platform for business and education to learn from each other about the variety of approaches to organisational management and development, and to work together to improve business and education performance. Partnerships also provide an opportunity for business to invest in the next generation of working Australians and their communities by helping young people acquire skills relevant to future community and business needs. The benefits to schools are multifaceted: Business partnerships enhance school capacity by providing a range of additional skills and resources to schools - for example, broadening experiences for children and young people, mentoring and professional development for school leaders, and assistance with information and communication technologies. Schools can benefit from business partnerships that build, in the longer term, their capacity to deliver improved performance. The potential benefits include improving student outcomes, particularly for disadvantaged children and young people, through better engagement, retention and individual support. 4 Business Working with Education

7 Partnerships with business can support young people s transitions from school into further training or employment and offer professional development opportunities for staff. Community confidence, support and connections with Victoria s schools can also be improved through business partnerships. Priority areas for engagement This Statement provides a framework for business and education to connect across five critical priority areas: 1 Opportunity creating greater opportunity for all Victorian children and young people, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, to achieve excellent academic, social and personal outcomes. 2 Excellence assisting parents, teachers and principals to develop a worldclass education system that values excellence in wellbeing, learning and teaching for all. 3 Leadership working with students, teachers, principals, parents and schools to enhance and maximise the impact of leadership on improved student, school and community outcomes. 4 Community assisting in bringing schools and communities together to share resources, learn from and better understand the needs of each other and create productive and worthwhile partnerships benefiting all community members. 5 Economy and society assisting in the expansion of opportunities for young people to undertake learning and pathways in areas of skill gaps or labour shortages, to the benefit of the economy and society. The initial focus will be to increase student interest, performance and pathways into mathematics and science. Business Working with Education 5

8 1. Opportunity SNAPSHOT: The Australian Business and Community Network GOALS Program A business education partnership success The Australian Business and Community Network s (ABCN) Growing Opportunities and Learning Skills (GOALS) program is a one-on-one mentoring partnership between a Year 9 student and a corporate volunteer, which aims to widen the life choices for disadvantaged students. The format involves a series of 90-minute mentoring sessions held at corporate venues over a calendar year. The program broadens the experiences and understanding of students and mentors alike. Students benefit from increased self-esteem, motivation to learn and expanded horizons and experiences. Parents have rated the program as highly successful, with 95 per cent saying that the mentoring had improved their child s motivation and self-confidence. Teachers reported dramatic improvements in students academic results and classroom engagement. The benefits to mentors include an increased awareness and interest in the broader community and improved skills and job satisfaction. One mentor commented, My student rekindled my understanding that it doesn t matter what life stage you re at, it s never too late to change things or make things happen. ABCN involves a number of Australia s major corporations and has been working in Victorian schools since In 2010 the ABCN partnered with 20 primary schools and 18 secondary schools. Many young Victorians face a great number of challenges in achieving their potential through school and early childhood experiences. This can place them at increased risk of not getting the best start in life potentially underachieving, leaving school early, or having limited pathways to further education and meaningful employment. The Government is committed to improving the participation and outcomes of all students, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds. Lifting the educational outcomes of all students is a shared community responsibility. It requires a sustained commitment from parents, governments, schools, communities and business to enhance every student s opportunity for effective learning and development. This can be achieved through strategies to ensure that the system can meet the diverse needs of all children and young people, thereby promoting social inclusion and reducing educational disadvantage. What sort of things do we want business to join us in doing? Involvement with the Maths and Science Education Centres, which provide statewide student and teacher access to up-to-date expertise and equipment. Improving literacy, numeracy and engagement through, for example, the support of homework clubs, and tutoring/mentor programs for students particularly in those schools where community support is not strong. Improving pathways and transitions for young people to participate in further education, training or employment after leaving school. For instance, business can offer mentoring, School Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships, or open their doors to enable students to visit workplaces and undertake work placements while at school, so as to broaden their awareness of the range of career choices and pathways available to them. 6 Business Working with Education

9 Building the community skills and knowledge of business personnel through, for example, corporate volunteering in mentoring programs, homework clubs, and business site visits for students. Providing better access for students to specialist and extracurricular programs to help them engage in activities such as sport, the arts, or personal and social learning. This access could be achieved through grants, sponsorships, scholarships, donations, expertise, equipment, academic support and corporate volunteers time. Involvement in Victoria s Koorie Education Strategy, Wannik, by supporting Koorie students attendance at leadership and cultural identity residential programs, mentoring opportunities to support students with the pressures of higher level study, and Koorie workforce professional learning programs. Supporting broad public education system initiatives that benefit government students and teachers across Victoria, such as access to information technology software packages and programs. Business Working with Education 7

10 2. Excellence Victoria is striving to create one of the world s leading learning and development systems. Working with all areas of our community to develop and support the aspirations and performance of all of our young people is central to this endeavour. Excellence in our learning and development system is about having skilled and motivated teachers, and high expectations and excellence in outcomes for each and every child and young person. What sort of things do we want business to join us in doing? SNAPSHOT: Improving student maths and science participation and achievement by providing The Intel opportunities Teach Program for students to experience maths and science practical A program in business action settings, and providing teachers with access to maths and science experts in the form of seminars, mentors or online networks. The Intel Teach Program has been operating in Victoria since 2003 and has Providing trained over opportunities 6000 teachers for across business the state. employees Developed and and teachers delivered to share by Intel, and develop this program their is skills offered and free knowledge of charge in to a teachers cooperative and educators. mutually supportive manner. This might include cross-mentoring opportunities, or establishing opportunities Intel sees this for program teachers as a and critical business component employees of its corporate to participate responsibility in strategy. It believes that education opens the door to opportunity and that extended secondment opportunities and then return to their substantive bright young minds are the key to solving global challenges. roles enriched by that experience. The Intel Teach Program offers teachers proven professional development Providing scholarships and bursaries for identified groups of students to supporting 21st-century skills. Intel Teach courses promote student-centered assist approaches them achieve and help excellence teachers engage in outcomes students and in deeply to undertake relevant pathways ways, with to further appropriate education use of and technology training. for For learning, example, creativity, this may and include communication. scholarships fostering excellence in languages or performing arts outcomes in locations, Independent or among evaluation cohorts of the of Intel students, Teach where Program disadvantage revealed that is 91 a per barrier to cent success. of participating teachers reported their students were motivated and involved in the lesson. In addition, 81 per cent of participating teachers Providing reported that scholarships student projects and bursaries showed for more identified in-depth groups understanding of teachers than to other assist comparable them to lead work. excellence A higher percentage in outcomes of teachers in identified who groups had Intel of Teach students. Master Teachers Teachers (MTs) in language in their schools learning, reported careers using education, technology or in maths their and practice science, (93.4 for per instance, cent) than might those be who awarded did not scholarships have an MT (86.9 or bursaries per cent). designed The program to support aims to their help teachers professional understand learning. how, when, and where to bring technology tools and resources into their classrooms through two key Exploring models for teachers to work with business partners to provide training programs Intel Teach Essentials Online and Intel Teach Thinking real-life learning experiences for students and young people. with Technology. Involvement in the Intel Teach Program has helped to transform teaching and learning in schools in many ways. For example, in June 2009, two Somerville Secondary College staff completed the Intel Teach Thinking with Technology Course. They are currently training many of the staff in their school and focusing initial work on a Year 8 integrated program. They are also enhancing this work with a range of innovative physical learning space designs. 8 Business Working with Education

11 What sort of things do we want business to join us in doing? Improving maths and science participation and achievement by providing opportunities for students to experience practical maths and science in business settings, and providing teachers with access to maths and science experts in the form of seminars, mentors or online networks. Providing opportunities for business employees and teachers to share and develop their skills and knowledge in a cooperative, mutually supportive manner. This might include cross-mentoring opportunities, or establishing opportunities for teachers and business employees to participate in extended secondment opportunities and then return to their substantive roles enriched by that experience. Providing scholarships and bursaries for identified groups of students to assist them to achieve excellence in outcomes and to undertake pathways to further education and training. For example, this may include scholarships fostering excellence in languages or performing arts outcomes in locations, or among cohorts of students, where disadvantage is a barrier to success. Providing scholarships and bursaries for identified groups of teachers to assist them to lead excellence in outcomes in identified groups of students. Teachers in language learning, careers education, or maths and science, for instance, might be awarded scholarships or bursaries designed to support their professional learning. Exploring models for teachers to work with business partners to provide real-life learning experiences for students and young people. Business Working with Education 9

12 3. Leadership Leadership is a major contributor to excellence in schools. We are focused on developing a culture of strong leadership through effective professional development programs and supporting school leaders in coaching and mentoring. SNAPSHOT: School and Business Leaders - Partners in Learning Leading an organisation is a complex, demanding and rewarding activity. While the context of leadership positions can vary greatly, leaders across our community experience many similar challenges and opportunities. Sharing of leadership and management experiences among leaders provides a unique opportunity for personal and professional growth and development. Kerrie Dowsley, the Principal of St Albans Secondary College and Robyn Worthington, Group Head of Human Capital Management and Managing Director, of Goldman Sachs JBWere are working together in the Australian Business and Community Network Partners in Learning Program. Kerrie has found that, Through our conversations and visits to each other s workplaces, I ve gained new perspectives on leadership and on what it means to be a leader, and have, I hope, developed my skills in dealing with particular issues and challenges. For Robyn, The Partners in Learning Program has allowed me to gain an appreciation of the day to day leadership challenges Kerrie faces and the similarities between these challenges and those faced by managers in the corporate environment. Kerrie also notes that An unexpected spin-off from our partnership which stemmed from Robyn and me analysing the results of the Leadership Module of last year s Staff Opinion Survey, was the Leadership Jump Start development program that Goldman Sachs JBWere ran in the second half of 2009 with our Leadership Team. The work ranged over many elements of leadership, but focussed particularly on challenges that we as a leadership group, were facing at the time. The impact of this program at the individual, team and whole school level is already evident in our work, and has the potential to be really significant over the coming year. Implementing the Leadership Jump Start program at St Albans Secondary College also had its benefits for Goldman Sachs JBWere. Robyn comments that, Members of my team who helped facilitate 10 Business Working with Education

13 SNAPSHOT (continues): the various projects have all commented that the experience has been very rewarding. Some specific feedback: The program provided an opportunity for team members to give back to the community within their functional expertise Helped increased their confidence in developing others in a noncorporate environment Allowed them to gain an understanding of the leadership and management issues within a school Increased their job satisfaction (i.e. proud to be working for a firm that is supportive of such initiatives). What sort of things do we want business to join us in doing? Supporting leadership initiatives that lead to improved business and school organisational performance, such as: partnering business leaders with principals and senior teachers to share leadership challenges and experiences facilitating workshops to enhance the skills of school leadership teams in managing change and improving operations providing business personnel with opportunities to develop their leadership skills by working with education leaders. Empowering children and young people to develop leadership skills by workshopping different aspects of leadership with business leaders, such as public speaking, responsibility, confidence, organisation and team skills. Providing access to business expertise to schools councils in skills such as planning, organisational development, resource management and training. This might include participation in, and consultancy to, school councils, committees, subcommittees and project boards. Participating in the Teach for Australia (TFA) program by supporting highperforming graduates from other fields who enter teaching through this program. Supporting broader leadership development and delivery in particular school networks or geographical locations. Business Working with Education 11

14 4. Community SNAPSHOT: Schools First National Australia Bank in partnership with the Foundation for Young Australians and the Australian Council for Educational Research Business, education and community working together Schools First is an awards program that aims to connect schools with their communities across Australia to bring together students, teachers, parents and community members to work towards a common goal of helping to improve student outcomes. This national awards program provides financial support to established effective school community partnerships that successfully demonstrate their partnership will continue to grow and develop with the awards money. School community partnerships that have a great idea, but lack resources to make it happen, are also eligible for awards funding. The program encourages communities to become more involved in their local school and schools in their local communities. Schools First acknowledges that successful partnerships embrace a wide variety and depth of people who in turn contribute to student learning. Effective school community partnerships give schools a much broader range of resources and support networks on which to draw. Research shows that student outcomes can be enhanced when they are connected to and involved with their community, resulting in greater student engagement, improved school attendance and retention and better academic performance. The Victorian Government is committed to bringing communities together to explore the many possibilities for cooperation and collaboration, particularly in areas experiencing socio-economic disadvantage and geographic isolation. Business partnerships can occur at a local, network, regional or statewide level. All partnerships need to be planned and fit for purpose, requiring consideration of the needs, roles and responsibilities of the school, as well as the partnership s monitoring, evaluation and sustainability. At all levels, Victoria s learning and development system can be supported through the specialised expertise of business. It will enrich the curriculum provision and assist school leaders to create strategies to maximise their school s student outcomes. What sort of things do we want business to join us in doing? Participation in place-based initiatives involving the development of cooperative and collaborative partnership arrangements or specific initiatives in particular localities, especially disadvantaged and rural/ remote communities. Initiatives could include area homework clubs, regeneration projects and education-to-employment or further education transition programs. Supporting Victoria s Koorie Education Strategy, Wannik, through partnerships with Koorie communities, students and schools. This support might be through providing school-to-work pathways, traineeships and employment opportunities for Koorie students; and access to business expertise, equipment and volunteers time to help Koorie students engage in specialist and extracurricular programs. 12 Business Working with Education

15 SNAPSHOT: A new school A collaboration of business, education and community The Colman Foundation has entered a unique partnership with the Victorian Government to help build a new Prep to Year 9 school that will include a co-located Early Childhood Service in Doveton, in Melbourne s outer southeast. It is the first long-term investment by a philanthropic organisation in a single Victorian government school, with the Foundation committing to an ongoing partnership with the school and early childhood service to support children and families in their early years of learning and development. Supporting broader regional and statewide initiatives designed to build parents capacity to effectively engage in supporting their children s education and development, such as numeracy and parent-reading programs, parent involvement committees and parenting classes. Building longer-term partnerships of mutual benefit between individual businesses, schools and school networks. Partnerships which develop and mature over time and lead to the development of specifically tailored programs and activities that meet the particular needs and ways of operating of the business and the school. For example a business and a school might cooperatively develop an induction and development program that partners new graduates from the two organisations. Involvement in after-school programs, including homework clubs, special interest student groups, careers nights, goal setting and student mentoring programs. The $29 million Doveton regeneration project will see Endeavour Hills Secondary College and Doveton Heights, Doveton North and Eumemmerring primary schools amalgamate on the Doveton Heights site. Business Working with Education 13

16 5. Economy and Society SNAPSHOT: ANZ Indigenous School Based Traineeships A new business education partnership ANZ s Indigenous School Based Traineeships provide Year 10 Indigenous students across Australia with a stepping stone to a career in business. The two-year traineeships, completed by students in Years 11 and 12, enable the school-based trainees to work as a trainee service consultant at least one day a week, achieve a national Certificate II in Business Services qualification, and receive support and mentoring from ANZ staff and Indigenous mentors. Since 2003, ANZ has recruited more than 250 Indigenous trainees. Sixty per cent of trainees who have completed the program have advanced to permanent positions or continued working part time as they pursued further study. In 2010 thirteen schoolbased and eight full time trainees began traineeships in Victorian ANZ branches. Traineeships are a key element of ANZ s Reconciliation Action Plan, with the goal of having 10 per cent of entrylevel roles in ANZ s branch network filled by Indigenous Australians by Traineeships provide benefits to both ANZ and the trainees. As an ANZ program officer explained, Trainees complete the program with the confidence and knowledge they require to enter the workforce and meet our customers needs. Our community can benefit from strategic matching of the needs, interests and desires of our students with the economic needs of society. By facilitating student interest, knowledge and skills through effective pathways into identified areas of community need we encourage innovation and productivity. The flow-on effects are young people s improved wellbeing and greater social cohesion in our broader community. The initial focus of this priority area is on increasing student interest and outcomes in mathematics and science, and pathways into them, through higher education study and future employment. Business working with education partnerships can provide a critical interface between meeting the needs of the individual and community by creating a dialogue about the skill and knowledge sets required for various careers and pathways and by promoting greater exposure and access to them. What sort of things do we want business to join us in doing? Supporting the Victorian Government s Maths and Science Strategy, launched in 2009, through partnerships providing engaging experiences for young people to equip them with maths and science skills for everyday life, as well as opening up pathways into vocational studies and careers. Getting involved in Local Learning Employment Networks (LLENs), which connect employers, education and training providers, government and community agencies, parents and individuals to help improve education, training and employment outcomes for young people aged years within their local area. Involvement in programs that build the skill and confidence of young people and connect with the world of business. Supporting the work of schools in providing a wide range of academic and vocational pathways. Partnerships with Victoria s Trade Training Centres, which are being established to increase the proportion of students achieving Year 12 or an equivalent qualification and to help address skill shortages in traditional trades and emerging industries. 14 Business Working with Education

17 6. Victorian Business Working with Education Foundation The Government has established a new independent Business Working with Education Foundation (BWE Foundation) to support cooperative and strategic partnership between business and the Government education system. The BWE Foundation will work with business, schools, philanthropic and not-for-profit organisations to improve opportunities for Government school students in Victoria. The BWE Foundation will enrich the important partnership work that currently occurs in Victoria by brokering new relationships, supporting a range of existing partnership activities and facilitating cooperative and targeted programs. Commencing full operation in 2011, the BWE Foundation will: play an important role in the development and delivery of partnership programs, activities and other opportunities that are supplementary to the provision of core educational instruction by Government schools provide a contact point for business and education partnerships in public education focus on the provision of support for government schools in areas that would benefit from greater business and philanthropic support, with a particular focus initially on additional support for mathematics and science provide tax deduction opportunities for business contributions as well as opportunities to share expertise and provide in-kind support to Government schools focus on partnerships that align with the priorities outlined in this Statement assist business in meeting their Corporate Social Responsibility interests provide advice to schools and business on partnership development access funds from a range of sources to support public education direct support to existing foundations and not-for-profit organisations in Victoria that are undertaking programs in areas of Government education priority. The BWE Foundation has been established as an independent charitable company governed by a board that includes members of the business, community and education sectors. It is intended that the BWE Foundation will have strong links with the Government in relation to advice about Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (DEECD) priorities and programs. The strong relationship between the Government, DEECD and the Foundation will assist in maximising the impact of partnership investment by business, philanthropic and not-for-profit organisations and the public education system. The BWE Foundation will provide Victoria with a significant opportunity to further extend cooperative partnership that will benefit Victorian Government school children and young people. Business Working with Education 15

18 7. Getting Involved Now There are many ways in which business can engage with Victoria s learning and development system. These include: using broker organisations that provide a range of programs involving business and corporate organisations. For further information, visit: Philanthropy Australia at: Australian Business and Community Network (ABCN) at: establishing partnerships between individual businesses and schools or school networks. To find your local school, visit: participating in Local Learning and Employment Networks (LLENs). For information on LLENS, visit: getting involved in place-based initiatives being undertaken across Victoria, such as regeneration projects, and supporting specialisation programs that provide pathways within schools, core school programs and statewide specialist centres. For further information, visit: providing access to particular resources and expertise owned by businesses, such as staff training programs, software packages and consultancy services. For example, refer to the Intel Teach Program at: providing traineeship programs. For further information, visit: contact the Business Working with Education Foundation at: Support and Advice The opportunities for partnerships between business and Victoria s government schools identified in this Statement of Priorities are a starting point. The Department s Education Partnerships Division has been established to provide support and advice about effective education partnerships. Business and schools are encouraged to contact the division on (03) The Department s sponsorship and commercial guidelines can be found at 16 Business Working with Education

19 Business Working with Education 13

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