Imagination Gaming… Taking Great Leaps for Gaming Kind

Imagination Gaming founder Nigel Scarfe discovered the power of games while playing Dungeons and Dragons as a child.

At the time, he was struggling to keep up in school and he found that the game expanded the way he used his mind and subsequently gave him a better understanding of maths and English in school.

Fast forward a fair few years and that valuable lesson is helping Nigel’s company (IG) pave the way for innovative games based learning by taking it back to more traditional board and card games with great results.

So much so that the gaming industry is starting to take notice of this small but mighty team.
Barnsley-based IG have now collaborated with big names in the games world (such as Haba, Green Board Games Co, and Asmodee) to create a full day of games and challenges in school to support children’s budding brains. It is because of these partnerships with leading worldwide games companies that IG are able to offer schools full Games Days – absolutely free.

Speaking about these collaborations, Nigel said: “We love it. Companies come to us with the games and we design the lesson plan around them. It also enables them to design better games, as they see firsthand how the games work in a school situation.”
IG are leaders in games based learning, and were the first company of their kind. Their free Games Day Programmes aim to teach the children a variety of skills in a way that is engaging and exciting to them. Nigel says of his presence in schools, “the curriculum focuses mainly on testing, which doesn’t always reinforce the practical use of what’s being taught in lessons. Games Days allow this reinforcing and engaging, which leads to greater memory of what’s being taught. There is a real need for this. There is a hunger to learn.”

And this hunger shows – the impact on schools to date is noticeable. One Deputy Head says: “There was lots of laughter and fun while the children work together – they don’t even realise they are learning. I am very pleased to say that there was no ‘hard sell’, just lots of fun. Highly recommend Imagination Gaming and would encourage schools to definitely give games days a go.”
What started out as one man in a few local schools has now transformed into a nationwide operation, and has even branched out overseas to Cyprus. There seems to be no stopping this growing games pioneer.

 

SLS launches inaugural Active Community Competition

School Lettings Solutions (SLS) has announced the launch of a national competition which will offer one group the chance to win a year’s hire of facilities at a school in their region.

SLS is on a mission to connect sport and leisure groups, classes and teams with their local schools to enhance the sense of community in the area and bring life to school facilities – and much-needed additional revenue – after the school bell has rang.

Founded in 2012 by Scott Warrington and Paul Andrews, SLS provides a full letting solution for schools, academies and colleges to maximise the use of their facilities to the local community during evenings, weekends and school holidays. The business now has a turnover of more than £10 million and employs 850 people across the UK, as well as welcoming nearly 10,000 community groups into facilities every year.

The competition provides the opportunity to nominate a worthy community group, team, club or class which epitomises community spirit and is in need of sport or leisure facilities. The winning project will receive a year of hire, which could be worth up to £5,000, with four regional project finalists also receiving a month’s worth of hire for their group with a value of up to £500.

To enter, groups should submit their reason and requirements. Entries can be supported by a video or photo which shows what value they bring to their local community and why they should win.

Commenting on the competition, Scott Warrington, co-founder of SLS said: “We wanted to launch this competition because it combines our passion for health and wellbeing and connecting schools with their communities. In our experience, thousands of sport and leisure groups across the UK struggle to find suitable, high-quality facilities to base their club, group or session in, with lack of access to school facilities often being the main barrier.

“Whether it’s a hall for a new mums’ fitness class or a base for an under-8s’ football session, SLS’s Active Community competition will provide an organisation with a base in the heart of their local community free of charge for a whole academic year. We hope to see lots of entries from groups across all regions and all varieties of sport and leisure.”

All entrants will be judged by a panel of industry leaders including Jack Shakespeare, head of ukactive kids – an organisation that exists to improve the health of the nation, providing services and partnerships for a broad range of sports and leisure organisations. Further guest judges to be announced.

Projects can range from a local community group, football team, exercise class or charity. Nominations can be submitted online at www.schoollettings.org from 8th April date by providing the name, location and requirements of the group and your reasons why they deserve to win. The deadline for entries is Wednesday 15th May.

For more information and full terms and conditions please visit www.schoollettings.org.

The screen machines: the professions most guilty of not giving their eyes a screen break

● Engineers spend the most amount of time staring at screens
● British workers are spending 85% of their waking hours staring at screens
● Nearly half (46%) of Brits admit that too much screen time during the day affects their sleep

The nation’s workers are jeopardising their sleep quality by spending 85% of their waking hours¹ staring at screens.

New research, conducted by eye care specialist Optegra, found that British workers are spending an average of 13 hours and 34 minutes a day looking at screens while at work, commuting and at home.

Surprisingly, employees are spending an average of 55 hours 36 minutes a month staring at a screen while commuting, when they could be giving their eyes a much-needed rest.

The study revealed that engineers are the professionals that spend the most time staring at a screen throughout their day. On average, engineers are looking at screens for 7 hours and 16 minutes at work, 5 hours and 22 minutes while commuting and 6 hours and 3 minutes while at home.

The top five professions that are spending the most time looking at screens throughout the day are:

1. Engineer (18 hours 40 minutes)
2. IT Specialist (18 and a half hours)
3. Accountant (13 hours 20 minutes)
4. Teacher (12 hours 27 minutes)
5. Admin Staff (9 hours 28 minutes)

Research² has found that excessive blue light exposure suppresses the production of melatonin, the hormone that regulates sleep-wake cycles, more than any other type of light.

It’s no surprise then that engineers are also the profession whose sleep suffers the most, with 72% agreeing that too much screen time during the day affects their sleep. They were followed by two thirds (66%) of IT specialists, nearly half (45%) of teachers, two fifths (40%) of accountants and just over a third (34%) of admin staff saying that too much screen time affects their sleep.

It seems that it is not only sleep that is affected by a high amount of screen time. According to the research, employees blame issues like headaches, dry eyes and stress or anxiety on too much screen time.

The top five complaints employees have experienced as a result of too much screen time are:

1.Tired eyes/eye strain (59%)
2. Headaches (40%)
3. Dry eyes (37%)
4. Disturbed sleep (31%)
5. Stress/anxiety (17%)

Sundeep Vaswani, Eye Sciences Clinical Research Associate at Optegra, said: “The amount of time people spend looking at screens throughout their day is very worrying. Optometrists are noticing an increase in tech-related eye strain and looking at the results of our research, this is no surprise.
“It is very important that if you are spending a lot of time on screens, whether it be for work or at home, you take lots of frequent breaks. Looking at something 20 metres away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes is a great way to make sure you are giving your eyes the rest they need.”
To read our five simple tips for keeping eyes healthy visit here: https://www.optegra.com/eye-health-blog/april-2019/five-simple-tips-for-healthy-eyes/

How can technology enhance teaching in rural schools?

With rural schools facing pressure from low pupil rolls, budget cuts and declining birth rates many small schools are struggling to maintain high standards. Kendra Bolton, headteacher at Stewartstown Primary, recognised internationally for its excellence in mathematics, explains how technology has helped her school meet these challenges and embrace its rural environment…
Rural schools have been the latest institutions under the spotlight, with the combination of distance, low pupil numbers and subsequent budget cuts leading to unsustainable conditions for many. Declining birth rates and difficulties recruiting are also problems; often schools experience a high percentage of older, experienced teachers but a low proportion of younger (and cheaper) staff.

Rural poverty is also an issue, with more emphasis in recent years placed on driving standards in urban schools with high proportions of EAL and pupil premium grant students. In contrast rural heads report high proportions of students just above the requirements for free school meals, with a recent report in The Key finding that 52% of heads said they have more “poor families” than just those eligible for the pupil premium grant.

Despite these challenges there are a still a proportion of rural schools that outperform their urban counterparts. Once such school in Stewartstown, County Dungannon in Northern Ireland has managed not just to survive but to thrive in its rural environment. Despite having less than 50 pupils Stewartstown Primary has gained international acclaim for its excellence in maths with no pupils underachieving in a subject in the midst of a fierce drive to raise standards. Kendra Bolton, Headteacher at the school says that key to their success is placing technology at the heart of learning as well as using the school’s rural environment to their advantage.

The challenges

“Our main challenges here in Stewartstown Primary School result from budgetary constraints.
“Whilst cuts aren’t an issue for rural primaries alone, we experience a different range of financial pressures to schools in urban areas. Transport for example is a huge cost both for the school and for parents. Additionally, our low pupil roll directly impacts our funding – though we have fewer pupils many of our overheads are the same as those in a medium sized school. Similarly, because we don’t benefit from massive economies of scale, resources are often more expensive per pupil than in a larger school.
“Another challenge is the distance between school and home for a number of pupils. This has the potential to make engaging with parents harder, though at Stewartstown we have been able to make this work to our advantage through a number of initiatives including the breakfast club hosted at school.
“A lack of diversity could be another challenge. Many of our pupils’ families have lived locally for generations and this means there is a lack of different experiences amongst the children. It can therefore be harder to get them to understand the lives of other children and as they grow older this can lead to a dangerous lack of aspirations amongst children – however talented they may be!”

The solution

Despite the potential challenges, Stewartstown Primary has found technology the solution to many of the pressures of working in a rural environment.
“We find that technology allows every child to access the curriculum in a supportive and differentiated way through a different medium, allowing learning to be personalised to the needs of individuals. Technology is an instant motivating tool, keeping the child engaged on the task whilst furthering their knowledge and learning of key concepts. We are fortunate at Stewartstown to have a full class set of iPads and laptops in school, and shared amongst only three classes overall, every child has access to a good range of resources.
“We take advantage of a great variety of apps and resources including some great free ones and a few excellent paid-for resources which the children love. Technology is a great tool for enhancing learning, particularly those which motivate children to stay engaged on topics such as mathematics which are often perceived to be harder.

“Though the distance between home and school can be a struggle for some parents, we find that we are able to use our small size and the school’s position in the community to our advantage.

“Being a small rural school allows for high engagement levels from parents. We open our doors to parents daily and they support us fully where possible in school, whether it be with fundraising activities, helping supervise on school trips or assisting with the breakfast club where children are able to access our online resources. Our strong relationships with parents’ means they are fully informed with their child’s academic performance and the children know and understand that both parents and teachers work as a team to help them reach their potential.

“Through our online maths resources Mathletics we have been able to engage the pupils in activities like the November Numeracy Challenge which we have entered for the past two consecutive years with excellent results. Last year we were the worldwide winners with the highest average pupil score, and this year we were placed second worldwide, but topping the UK leader boards. Quite a remarkable achievement for such a small school!
“As pupils compete in the Live Mathletics section of the resource against other pupils in real time they are to see where in the world their fellow competitors are located giving a real sense of excitement to maths and helping them to gain a sense of other children around the globe learning in the same way that they are. The pupils can also compete against their own classmates in live, head-on challenges. It can be very competitive at times, but it is very stimulating for the pupils!”

The future

“We are always making exciting plans for the future, exploring ways to keep our classroom practice innovative and fresh. The pupils are the heart of our school, and together, working as a team, we endeavour to continue to give them an excellent experience of school life, with a wealth of high quality teaching and learning opportunities on offer. Technology and continuing our use of Mathletics of course will be part of this!”

LGfL and Adobe join forces to boost creativity in schools across the UK and London

Edtech charity London Grid for Learning and Adobe to equip thousands of schools across the UK – including over 500 secondary and 1600 primary schools in all 33 London boroughs – with free digital and creative software to help children develop skills for their future careers

EdTech charity LGfL (London Grid for Learning) and creative software company Adobe have joined forces to provide access to software that will help to equip the next generation of school children with skills to thrive in the future workplace.

Under the terms of this landmark partnership, over 3000 schools throughout the UK – including over 500 secondary and 1600 primary schools across all 33 London boroughs – supported by the London Grid for Learning (LGfL) will receive free access to Adobe Creative Cloud, the industry-leading creative and digital tools used for graphic design, video editing, web development and photography, which come with a set of mobile applications and optional cloud services. In addition schools will receive dedicated support and free access to Adobe Spark for Education, an integrated suite of storytelling applications that enable students to create mobile and web content.

Free access to Adobe Creative Cloud for LGfL schools fulfils a common long-term objective of equipping teachers with the tools they need to infuse creativity into the classroom and allows all students, regardless of background, to develop their creative problem-solving skills which are increasingly needed to help students gain the expertise employers seek in the modern workplace.
The World Economic Forum last year estimated that 50% of companies expect AI to reduce their workforce in the next three years, and listed problem solving, critical thinking and creativity as the top three skills that children need to be taught for future success.

As a charity committed to the advancement of education through digital innovation this new online resource is offered as part of LGfL’s Let’s Get Digital subscription, which equips schools with the super-high speed and secure network needed to access AI, VR and live-streaming tools as well as high-quality training to ensure teachers are able to deploy these resources.

Commenting on the new partnership, John Jackson, CEO, LGfL said, “LGfL is focused on harnessing digital innovation to inspire the teachers and children in the thousands of schools we support across the UK. I’m very excited by our new strategic partnership with Adobe which not only saves schools money but will accelerate the amazing Creative Cloud platform into UK education. I can’t wait to see the impact on learning outcomes as I believe that we are placing a fantastic creative resource into the hands of the most creative nation in the world – and making it cost effective to do so!”
Mala Sharma, VP and GM Creative Cloud, Adobe also said, “As an industry, it’s our responsibility to ensure teachers have the resources and support they need to make creativity a core part of the curriculum to ensure the success of the next generation workforce. We believe in creativity for all, and are proud to be working with LGfL on this fantastic partnership to ensure that every young person in London has access to the digital and creative tools that will enable them to develop skills they will need in the workplace.”

To find out more about the partnership and to claim your schools free license please visit https://adobe.lgfl.net
For more information on LGfL please visit www.lgfl.net
For more information on Adobe please visit www.adobe.com/uk

Government investment in EdTech must focus on underlying technology to enhance the learning experience

Reducing the administrative burden on teachers through innovative technology will deliver a richer and more engaging learning experience, says KYOCERA Document Solutions

The Government’s announcement on Wednesday that it would invest up to £10 million in technology for the education sector reflects a growing recognition of the transformative role that technology can play in providing a rich and engaging learning experience for students. However, Joe Doyle, Group Marketing Director at KYOCERA Document Solutions UK, suggests that the government should focus its investment on the underlying technologies that can significantly reduce the administrative burden on teachers so that they can devote more of their attention to their students.

There is a clear need for the intelligent implementation of technology to reduce the amount of time that teachers have to spend on tedious, time-consuming processes. A 2018 survey of teachers from the National Education Union reported that 61% of respondents reported spending over 3 hours a day on tasks that did not involve teaching, limiting the time available to them to plan engaging lessons and negatively impacting teachers’ work-life balance.

Joe commented: “While it may be tempting for government and education authorities to invest in flashy technology for the classroom, they should instead concentrate on the underlying technologies that make teachers’ lives easier, helping them to focus on delivering an excellent education experience for all. Of course, it would be fantastic to have VR headsets in every classroom, but that would be no use if the teacher is so buried in paperwork that they don’t have the time to prepare a lesson that makes best use of them.

“A prime example of a time-consuming process overdue for transformation through new technology is the copyright process. Currently many teachers are required to manually fill out forms whenever they copy or scan copyrighted material that are then sent to the Copyright Licensing Agency, in what is a lengthy and tedious process. However, there are now apps, such as KYOCERA’s CopyScanPublications app, which can digitally transform this process, ensuring that the necessary data goes straight to the CLA. This is the kind of innovative technology that needs to be applied to a whole range of administrative processes to free up teachers’ time and help them focus on teaching.

“Government investment in technology for the education sector should always be welcomed by all stakeholders, but to make sure that taxpayers’ money is spent most effectively, it needs a really strategic approach. The government should be deploying technology to reduce the administrative burden on teachers, supporting them with the technology they need and helping them do what they do best, give a great learning experience to students. This could fundamentally raise standards across the sector and help to equip the UK education system for a digital future,” Joe concluded.

PLANNING APPROVED FOR UNIVERSITY OF LINCOLN £21M MEDICAL SCHOOL BUILDING

PLANS for a new, £21 million medical school building at the University of Lincoln (UoL) have been approved, providing a significant, new opportunity for medical students to study in state-of-the art-facilities in the UK.

Perfect Circle – a consortium comprising of Pick Everard, Gleeds and AECOM – is delivering project management, cost management, BREEAM consultancy services and design services for the scheme at UoL, located at the Brayford Pool Campus, Lincoln. The provision of these services have been enabled by the Scape National Built Environment Consultancy Services (BECS) framework.
The new, five-storey building is due to complete in Spring 2021 and will comprise: lecture theatres; laboratories; clinical and prosection anatomy suites, equipped with cutting-edge diagnostic tools; and a science library. Mock consultation rooms in the clinical suite will allow students to experience real life situations encountered by those in the medical profession, using the latest technology.

Victoria Brambini, managing director of Perfect Circle, said: “This new facility marks a significant step-change in the provision of state-of-the-art training for the next generation of medical professionals. As well as inspiring future medical professionals, this exciting development will support the government’s efforts to address the NHS’ skills shortage. The medical school will play an important role in driving the local economy and will transform the campus.”
With aspirations to reach carbon neutrality, the building has been designed to meet BREEAM Excellent standards, with features including a living wall and photovoltaic panels.
Mark Robinson, Scape Group chief executive, said: “Our BECS framework has been designed to accelerate and optimise the provision of consultancy services for exciting schemes such as this and I am delighted to see UoL engaging with Perfect Circle on this important project.”
“Our health service is arguably our nation’s greatest achievement and this modern medical training facility will help create the additional skills to ensure that our NHS remains fighting fit for the future.”
In March 2018, UoL and the University of Nottingham announced an exciting collaboration to provide a medical education for students across Lincolnshire, providing more opportunities and a high-class education. Through this innovative partnership, students will study for a University of Nottingham Bachelor of Medicine Bachelor of Surgery (BMBS) medical degree at the UoL site, which is set to open its doors to its first intake of 95 students in September 2019.
For more information on Perfect Circle, please visit www.perfectcircle.co.uk.

Protect children’s hands this National Gardening Week

National Gardening Week is fast approaching and this year the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) are focusing the campaign on “Edible Britain” as an acknowledgment of own-grown produce. Launched in 2011, the event has grown year-on-year and is now the nation’s biggest celebration of gardening. Gardeners of all ages are encouraged to start growing produce and share their efforts on social media by using hashtag #NationalGardeningWeek.

Gardening is well known to be advantageous to personal wellbeing, whilst encouraging children to grow their own fruit and vegetables provides life skills and an appreciation of good food.

It is, however, important to protect the skin when gardening. Thorny plants and sharp-edged stones can easily break a child’s skin and make them more susceptible to infections such as tetanus from the clostridium tetani bacterium, commonly found in soil.

General advice is to wear protective gloves and long sleeves to avoid the risk of skin breakage and contact with poisonous plants.


Eureka! is pleased to announce the addition of children’s gardening gloves to its wide range of first aid, hygiene and safety products, helping you protect a child’s hands in time for National Gardening Week.

The colourful play and work gloves for children are perfect for protecting small hands and provide excellent grip without loss of touch sensitivity. They are breathable to avoid excessive sweating and a snug knit wrist keeps out dirt and allows for easy donning and doffing.

With prices as low as £2.75 a pair and free next working day delivery on all UK mainland orders placed before 4.30pm, you can ensure the protection of little ones in your care.

Find out more at www.eurekadirect.co.uk/gardening or call the Eureka! team on freephone 0800 358 0085.

Schools need more imaginative answers to the curriculum squeeze

For students today, studying a broad range of subjects at school is more important than ever before. With an economy increasingly based on roles requiring a combination of technical, interpersonal and creative skills – a trend that will only deepen with an anticipated 119,000 additional creative and tech jobs in the UK alone by 2024 – breadth of understanding is often as important as depth of knowledge. Business leaders, innovators and entrepreneurs now need fluency in everything from coding and engineering to language skills, sales, networking, marketing, design, and even social media influencing.

However, in an era in which there is ever more pressure on education, schools are often unable to offer students the range of subjects they need to thrive and develop. In 2017, arts subjects hit their lowest school enrolment rate in a decade, while an Edge Foundation report last year showed that GCSE entries in creative subjects have fallen by 20% since 2010. Meanwhile, modern foreign language study is also in decline: between 2011 and 2016, the number of entries for French and German A Level both dropped by around 26%, and applications to degree courses involving European languages have fallen by nearly a quarter in the past five years. Although the jobs of the future are likely to be those high in creativity and communication skills, it seems that fewer and fewer students are studying – or are able to study – the subjects that develop these skills. Why?

One possible factor in many schools is teacher shortages. UK-wide, 30% of newly qualified teachers are quitting within their first five years, and nearly half plan to leave teaching within the next five. The inevitable consequence is that teacher numbers are dwindling: between 2010 and 2016, the number of secondary school teachers fell by 10,800, and in 2017 alone the overall number of teachers in England fell by over 5,000.

It is understandable, then, that schools have to prioritise. However, the first casualty is often the range of subjects they offer: increasingly, subjects are being dropped when resources struggle to cover them – particularly in the case of creative subjects. Yet for many students, it is these subjects that allow creative expression and motivate them to engage in their education. While there is often great emphasis on a core of English, Mathematics and Sciences, the truth is that a quality education aiming to create rounded students must cover these and much more.

Of course, there’s no substitute for face to face teaching, but while schools struggle to find the staff to teach a full range of subjects, we should be exploring the available technological options that can allow students to take courses they’d otherwise unfortunately have to miss out on. Even when schools are well resourced and offer a good range of subjects, there are still often more niche subjects they cannot cover which could otherwise allow students to follow their passions, stretch themselves, and grow as individuals. There’s also the simple fact that it’s simply not practical or feasible for schools to have the capacity within their own walls to teach every subject that students want to study, yet all schools want to give their pupils the best chance to fully develop their academic interests.

Having offered IB courses online to schools across the world for over a decade, we’ve found that supplementary online learning – taught via virtual classrooms and supported by experienced online teachers – can help solve these problems. For pupils in exceptional circumstances – for instance, those whose parents’ employment keeps them constantly on the move – online learning can also bring much-needed stability and continuity to their education.

We have many successful case studies. One student who took Mandarin with us because his school in Colorado did not yet have a Chinese program is now regularly visiting China and held his Eagle Scout project in Inner Mongolia. Another followed his passion to take Film Studies online with us in Yokohama International School and is now a filmmaker having studied at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. We’ve also found that online learning can broaden pupils’ digital and collaborative skills, encouraging them to carry out research, co-ordinate group work and discuss material in an online community. Indeed, research has shown that these features benefit students’ wider education by encouraging them to take ownership of their learning process, helping prepare them for their university careers where they’ll need to study independently.

Education is changing faster than ever, with new ideas, technologies and demands arising each year. Classroom teaching can never be replaced, but while schools struggle to offer a full range of subjects, supplementary and judicious use of technology and online learning can allow students to take subjects they otherwise wouldn’t be able to. At its heart, education is about opportunity, so we should be mindful of all the ways we can increase this for the young people of today.

John Ingram is CEO of Pamoja Education

Mabey Hire launches STEM Education Programme to inspire next generation of engineers in UK

First of its kind programme enables children aged 10-13 to experience fundamental civil engineering principles in a fun and engaging way in afterschool clubs using LEGO® Education materials

95% of children said they would consider a career in engineering following pilot course

Mabey Hire has today announced the launch of its STEM Education Programme in the UK. The immersive 16-week course, thought to be one of the UK’s first civil engineering focused programmes that uses LEGO® Education materials, has been developed by Mabey Hire to inspire young children to study STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects and consider careers in civil engineering.

Aimed at school children aged 10-13, the programme helps students improve their awareness and perceptions of the engineering and construction sectors, by giving them the opportunity to learn basic engineering principles in a hands-on, fun and engaging way. The tasks cover mathematical challenges and nine different engineering activities including beam balance, freewheeler, power car, gear racer, tower crane, robot arm, scissor lift, watch tower and bridge. To consolidate the learning, Mabey Hire has created a bespoke ‘mission mat’ – a visual learning tool which encourages students to apply learning and problem solving to achieve an end goal.

To connect with the digital world and embrace the future of technology in construction, students will also engage in the programme through Virtual Reality (VR), where some of the world’s most iconic structures – for example the Sydney Opera House or Eifel Tower – will be represented in LEGO® VR worlds. Through VR headsets, students will engage with and explore the structures while learning the statistics and facts that have contributed to their construction.

The programme was created by Mabey Hire’s Engineering Director Dave Holland and Digital Engineer Andrew Gascoine. A successful pilot programme, which was run to coincide with the Year of Engineering in 2018, had fantastic results, with 95% of children saying they would consider a career in engineering after they had taken part in the programme.

Andy Snape, Curriculum Projects Manager, LEGO® Education Innovation Studio, comments: “This programme is testament to the determination of Mabey Hire’s engineers to promote the creative, practical and innovative career opportunities STEM subjects bring. By using applied learning techniques and digital tools like VR which show where the exciting future of civil engineering is heading, programmes like this are just what the industry needs to encourage young people to see a future in engineering.”

Gordon MacDonald, Chief Executive Officer, Mabey Hire adds: “One of Mabey Hire’s key strengths is its engineering expertise and we know how varied, fascinating and rewarding a career in engineering can be. With 1.8 million engineers needed in the UK by 2025, we take our responsibility for encouraging the next generation of engineers seriously, which is why we have built this programme to inspire and engage children to consider a career in engineering, no matter what their current understanding of the subject is.”

Mabey Hire is now running the full programme to children across three schools in Manchester, Glasgow and Wigan, which are located close to some of Mabey’s largest depots. The programme has also been packaged so that it can be readily deployed by other key players in the engineering supply chain, in order to help reach more children. Leading principal contractor Morgan Sindall Infrastructure is the first in the industry to roll out the Mabey STEM Education Programme to its own school contacts, starting with Northlands Primary School, located near the company’s head office in Rugby.

Alison Chippington, Highways Head of Work Winning at Morgan Sindall Infrastructure, said: “It was in conversation with our supplier Mabey at our Group Supply Chain best practice event earlier this year that we first heard about this innovative education scheme. Seeing the potential, Morgan Sindall Infrastructure has been delighted to support the scheme in its first pilot in the industry – we are committed to inspiring the workforce of the future and addressing the industry’s skill shortage and this programme does just that.”
For more information on the Mabey STEM Education Programme, including testimonials, photographs and videos from the pilot programme, please visit: https://www.mabey.com/uk/campaigns/Mabey-STEM-Education-Programme
LEGO is a trademark of the LEGO Group, which does not sponsor, authorize or endorse this press release.