ERA Foundation has announced a further £50,000 of funding for STEM support to UK schools. This will improve the lives of over 16,000 young people by building young people’s STEM knowledge, skills, confidence and career aspirations.
The funding will pay for four new ENTHUSE Partnerships in West Sussex, London, Liverpool and Derbyshire, as well as developing teaching resources to accompany ERA’s Born to Engineer resources.
Encouraging more women into engineering, and the STEM skills needed for advanced manufacturing will be the focus subjects for the partnerships.
ENTHUSE Partnerships comprise a two-year programme which brings together groups of up to 8 schools to work on a common goal. The programme focuses heavily on improving quality of teaching through CPD, working with STEM Ambassadors to bring real-life contexts into schools, building STEM Clubs and enabling teachers to take part in the work experience in industry. The schools also benefit from guided access to STEM Learning’s unrivalled collection of resources.
This latest funding follows an initial pilot, when ERA supported its first ENTHUSE Partnership in Coventry. The partnership began in March 2018 and is focused on increasing awareness and developing a sense of excitement among female students about the potential opportunities that exist for them in STEM-related careers.
By targeting high-ability female students in both primary and secondary, the aim is that they will experience success and choose design and technology or engineering as future career progression routes.
Formal evaluation has shown that ENTHUSE Partnerships have significant benefits for teachers and young people - improving STEM teaching and teacher retention, increasing young people’s interest and attainment in STEM, as well as awareness of STEM careers.
Founded in 1920, the ERA Foundation Ltd is a not for profit institution that is deeply rooted in its electrical research and commercial origins, and has grown to become the UK’s first “privatised” research association.
In 2003 the entire issued share capital of ERA Technology was sold and the proceeds used as the basis for the ERA Foundation’s funds. Since then, they have supported the development of engineering skills in the UK with a focus on electro-technologies. Their major partners, in addition to STEM Learning, include The Royal Society, The Royal Academy of Engineering, The Royal Commission of 1851 and the IET along with other specialist skills organisations.
STEM Learning and ERA Foundation are committed to encouraging more pupils from all backgrounds, to progress in STEM studies and careers.
Sir John O’Reilly, Chair of the ERA Foundation, said:
“A key part of the ERA Foundation’s long-term strategy is to forge even closer collaboration with our key partners to actively encourage more young people, and particularly young women, to take up engineering as a career. I am therefore delighted that we have been able to work with STEM learning to support the development of four new Enthuse Partnerships, which have an excellent track record in reaching large numbers of high-potential students.”