Ahead of GCSE results being released today, Craig Phillips the Foundation’s Employability Lead headed to BBC Radio Northampton to highlight that exam results are just a steppingstone and emphasised the value of perseverance and adaptability in the face of challenges.
Well versed in guiding young individuals through these transitional phases and inspiring them to follow paths that align with their interests and strengths, Craig heads up the Foundation’s 16+ programmes which supported 61 learners over the past academic year.
Aimed at 16–19-year-olds, the Foundation’s 16+ programmes, HITZ, Aspire and Engage+ allow young people to gain additional accredited qualifications, such as their maths and english GCSE’s and employability skills alongside enrichment, workshops and work experience opportunities.
Speaking to Tom Percival, BBC Radio Northampton’s Breakfast presenter and producer, Craig said “Our sessions are very much tailored, and we allow young people to grow in their own time, there’s no pressure.
“We place them into work experience to enhance their skills such as communication and teamwork and then we draw their interests and their passions through the enrichment side of things”.
Craig shared his own personal journey which saw him resit his maths GCSE in 2018 saying “I went to school; didn’t pass my GCSE’s. I moved up to college, resat them again where I got one, but I didn’t get my maths. I managed to still go to university and went through all the employment stages until I realised in 2018, that I need my maths because I'm going into teaching.
“GCSE’s don’t suit everyone's learning style, my learning style was practical, I'm at kinaesthetic, a hands-on, typical sports person. I realised in 2018 what I failed in or didn’t achieve back then, I was able to apply myself better, at more of a mature age, I knew where I went wrong and that was 18 years later, so there is light at the end of the tunnel”.
Also, to speak on the radio was Mason, who joined the HITZ programme this year and has been working towards his GCSE’s and employability skills, he said “In secondary school I really struggled, I was silly and hanging out with the wrong crowd. I was arguing with teachers, skipping lessons and doing what the teacher didn’t want me to do. I know they wanted the best for me, and I really wish I could go back and not do that again.
“I can speak to anyone (at the Foundation) so it’s a better environment and you can be your own person; they like to bring that out of you. You can feel safe there, there’s no trouble, I know the environment from going to the games, so I feel safe there.
To listen to the interview click HERE
Mason 1:24:17 – 1:26.16
Craig 1:26:16 – 1:32:15
Mason 2:25:12 - 2:27:09