Making Things Happen

A Win-Win In Warrington

“I will certainly be booking Bright Futures again.”

Cardinal Newman High School

Cardinal Newman Catholic High School is situated in Warrington, Cheshire. Amongst its aims, it seeks to provide an education that equips its students “to live and work confidently, effectively and wisely in a complex and changing world”.

Bright Futures were invited to run a programme for Year 10 on Enterprise, so as to give Cardinal Newman students an opportunity to develop those key skills needed to succeed in this “complex and changing world”.

Student comments about the day

All students completed a detailed evaluation at the end of the day. A full analysis of their responses has been supplied to the School. Here is a selection of some of the most interesting comments from the students on what they found most helpful about the day:

  • Learning to work with people I wouldn’t normally, and under pressure
  • Being made to work out of my comfort zone
  • You need to take risks and make smart investments to gain profit
  • Making a product, having a limited supplier and a demanding buyer was the best bit
  • I learned about the two types of enterprise
  • It showed work could be fun
  • You need to be quick but careful to earn money

Lindsey Shaw, Head of Mathematics and Enterprise Education, had wanted to give her Year 10 students a realistic experience of what is involved in being an entrepreneurial person and to let them see how to develop those key enterprising skills of communication, problem-solving and team work. She was keen to find a provider who would stretch her students’ powers of imagination and creativity. At the end of the day, she felt she had done just that, in partnership with Bright Futures.

Lindsey had challenged her students to rise to the occasion and had asked them to come dressed very smartly in their full school uniform. “I wanted them to arrive with a different mindset from the one they usually have for a school day,” she said. They did just this. Matt Watson, Managing Director of Bright Futures, presented the day to the Cardinal Newman students. Matt commented: “The students were dressed very smartly indeed. The school uniform of collar and tie and blazer is just what I would expect for a business event. I am sure that this made a difference to their attitude and to what they gained from the day.”

Lindsey had a second aim. She wanted to gain double benefit from the Bright Futures programme and so she arranged for her staff colleagues to come along for the day. She asked the staff to join in, and they did so enthusiastically, taking the initiative and encouraging their students in the fast-moving challenges, quizzes, puzzles and trading activities. The result was a win-win. Both students and staff benefitted from an enhanced experience at many levels.

We asked Lindsey if she thought that there were any professional development benefits for her staff from them taking an active part in the Bright Futures experience. She said: “It gives staff the opportunity to work with students in a different environment. They helped motivate and engage pupils in the tasks they were given.”

Lindsey commented: “This was the third time that Bright Futures have been to Cardinal Newman, and the quality of the experience they gave to our students was very high. I will certainly be booking them to come again.”

The Executive Headteacher, Mr S Clarke, said: “The Federation of our two schools – Cardinal Newman and St Gregory’s – is fully committed to giving our students top quality experiences. One of our main aims is continually to exceed our previous best. It seems to me that Bright Futures is helping us with this aim.”

Cardinal Newman Catholic High School
Bridgewater Avenue,
Cheshire, WA4 1RX
T: (01925) 635556
F: (01925) 628600

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