Back To School: A view from the road

I hope more and more i readers will sign up to become be part of the movement

Share

The first Back to School Week is officially over. I’m exhausted.

It was just over a year ago that I first heard the idea mentioned. It was one of the many big ideas that I’d heard about in my first two weeks with Future First, and I couldn’t help but wonder how it could all be possible. “There’ll be events all over the country” and “we’ll be signing up hundreds of people each day”, our Founder Jake told me. I smiled and nodded, excited to be at an organisation where people felt like anything was possible, but slightly worried about how a team of 15 people could make any of this really happen.

Here I am, a year later, heading down the M6 from Liverpool having completed my last event. Over the campaign, I’ve been in Leighton Buzzard, Yeovil, Birmingham, Derby, London, Kent, Liverpool and Manchester.  I’ve personally worked with over 1,000 young people and 32 alumni volunteers.

I got to hear Nathan, Fazakerley High School alumnus, telling students that “changing your mind is OK, as long as you work hard and take skills from each experience”. He had decided he wanted to use his law degree to become a lecturer, rather than a solicitor. Emma, from Alexandra Park School, retold her story, a teacher turned PR guru, advising Year 7 students to “take risks – just have a go!”.

The consistent messages from former students have been that you’ve got to focus and work hard but that it’s ok to make mistakes along the way. As a former teacher, I know how valuable the personal stories that bring those messages to life can be.

Students haven’t kept quiet this week either, with hundreds sharing ideas, questions and opinions during sessions. “But do the things you learn at school really help in the future?” asked one emboldened Year 10 boy this morning.

The highlight of the week? Probably receiving an email form Christine Anderson at da Vinci Community College saying that some Year 7s were so inspired by the session they asked to go back in to their primary schools and share stories of secondary school life.

At the beginning of the week we released research showing state school students were ten times less likely to believe that people like them are successful.

I hope more and more i readers will sign up to become be part of the movement and let us take them back to school so we can get denting those numbers:

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

English Teacher

£4848 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: Outstanding...

Cover Supervisors/Teaching Assistants Secondary Schools in York

Negotiable: Randstad Education Leeds: Cover Supervisors/Long Term Teaching Ass...

Science Teacher

£20000 - £30000 per annum: Randstad Education Leeds: Secondary Science Teacher...

Cover Supervisor

£55 - £70 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Cover Supervisors needed for seco...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Daily catch-up: EU news, and other reasons to be cheerful

John Rentoul
The influx of hundreds of thousands of eastern European workers has significantly altered the composition of some parts of Britain  

Immigration is the issue many in Labour fear most

Nigel Morris
Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker