I recently took part in a school careers event. The school in question is progressive in that it goes out of it’s way to engage with employers and provide it’s pupils with something “more than” advice about courses and routes towards a job.
At our first conversation, the careers teacher had asked a common question:
“What can bizenko do for my school, that we can’t do for ourselves?”
I don’t want to offend anyone, but, as an employer, I have some strong opinions about the ‘academic’ British education system not being well-suited to the longer-term employment needs of the young people it educates. I don’t want to offend anyone who inhabits that world, I just want to ensure that young people have more to offer than an academic qualification when they apply for a job.
Before the event I had explained the value employers place on commercial awareness, and how this is markedly different from inspirational talks or workshops about CV or interviews. I’d explained the value of helping young people understand the commercial context of any job in order to be able to add value once in the job. I had explained how my background as a teacher and as an employer allowed me to give pupils contextual insight to the motivation and mentality of any hiring manager.
This blend of experience or expertise doesn’t exist in most UK schools. It’s why we do what we do.
After the event, the feedback was positive. One comment from a pupil at the school, which I thought was brilliant, was:
“Of all the events I’ve had to do at school, this has been the most worthwhile”.
This happened to have been delivered verbally, and with such enthusiasm that I was left in no doubt as to the sincerity. The careers teacher also passed on other comments which suggested genuine attitude-changing reactions amongst the pupils.
When I was at school, I used to struggle to understand the relevance and purpose of much of what took place. That’s why I’ve designed bizenko to explain the context and relevance of each activity and scenario “ahead of time”.
Even if exams are vital to young people within education, students also need to know what’s important beyond education (where the importance of exams begins to diminish). Bizenko offers training and tools that the young person might not “need” for some years, but which will, in the meantime, allow them to prepare themselves for to the culture shift between education and employment. This feedback tells us that this is the bit schools cannot do for themselves.