Monday, June 11, 2012

News: National recognition for Rotherham Ready


Rotherham Council's Rotherham Ready enterprise education programme has been recognised as a radical new way to deliver public services.

It has been selected to move into the second phase of the Creative Councils programme run by the National Endowment for Science Technology and the Arts (NESTA) and the Local Government Association.

Rotherham was one of just 17 councils from across the country selected to work intensively with the organisers and now just one of six that will be further developed as part of the programme.

The Creative Councils programme, which launched in April 2011, supports pioneering councils to develop, implement and spread transformational new approaches to meeting some of the biggest medium and long-term challenges facing communities and local services.

The second phase will build on some of the strongest ideas that have the potential to spread to other councils, by providing up to £150,000 in follow-on funding as well as non financial support such as legal advice and support with community engagement.

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council submitted an idea to explore how the town's award winning enterprise education programme – Rotherham Ready – could be replicated nationally, creating a culture of enterprise in education.

Rotherham has a unique borough wide strategy for developing a culture of enterprise. Rotherham Ready, part funded by the European Regional Development Fund, promotes enterprise and entrepreneurship throughout education and then Rotherham Youth Enterprise supports young people to start businesses in the town, with 232 youth businesses launched in the last five years.

This approach led to Rotherham being crowned The Most Enterprising Place in Britain in November 2010, beating off stiff competition from across Great Britain in the prestigious Enterprising Britain competition, headed up by Dragon's Den Star, Peter Jones.

Ready programmes have been developed in other parts of Yorkshire and the Humber, supported by the Young People's Enterprise Forum. Hull Ready, North Lincolnshire Ready, Calderdale Ready and Scarborough Ready have all been launched.

Catherine Brentnall, project officer for Rotherham Ready said: "We are thrilled to be one of the final six Creative Councils and to be able to continue working closely with NESTA. The level of challenge and support we have experienced being involved in the programme has really helped us develop new ideas about how to embed enterprise culture in education and in our communities."

Philip Colligan, executive director of NESTA's Innovation Lab, said: "Now more than ever we need local government to take the lead in shaping the public services of the future. All of the Creative Councils 2012 have showed a level of ambition and capability around innovation that deserves national recognition and attention. It's an amazingly diverse and exciting portfolio that we'll be working with over the next year and we'll be working hard to share their experiences and learning with the wider sector."

Rotherham Ready website

Images: Rotherham Ready


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