In The Know – Book your Coding Workshops PLUS a Freebie for Coding Week!

In The Know – Book your Coding Workshops PLUS a Freebie for Coding Week!

In The Know What's new? Young people

This week is European Coding week and we’ll be celebrating throughout this month with tech related blog posts, a free resource for you to download and further celebrations later this month with a series of half-term coding workshops at Google Academy London!

Free Download – 20 Free Coding Resources!
Did you know that you can teach yourself how to code? We’ve put together some amazing websites that young people can use to teach themselves how to code! These websites and online platforms are easy to use and they are free to access. From solving fun storyline problems using coding to animation & art themed challenges, this is a fantastic download for young people interested in coding. Follow this link for your free download!

#DayofCode – Wednesday 23rd October & Thursday 24th October
We’ve managed to secure three dates to run coding workshops at Google Academy! As many parents have requested, #DayofCode will be open to boys and girls aged 12-16 (Years 8 to 11). The workshops will give each young person a chance to develop their coding skills and build an exciting mobile app game in just one day! The workshop content is repeated so you only need to book your child for one day! All tickets will be released in phases via eventbrite: www.gtscholars.eventbrite.com

#GirlMeetsCode – Tuesday 22nd October 2019
All the stats show that there are fewer women in Tech and numbers have declined since the 90s! We know that girls can be a force for good in the world and many technology companies are actively seeking women to make a change in the technology world. For this reason, we’re running a special day coding workshop just for girls! Similar to #DayofCode, this workshop will not require any previous coding experience as you’ll be guided through the day by our facilitators and volunteers. To join in with the girls go to: www.gtscholars.eventbrite.com

 

Spotlight on one of our young scholars – Ladan

Spotlight on one of our young scholars – Ladan

Growth mindset Private tuition Success stories What's new? Young people

Please tell us a bit about yourself
I’m fifteen and am in Year 10. I love subjects like history as I’ve always enjoyed learning about interesting events such as The Cold War since I was little. I also enjoy learning science, especially experiments.

What does being on the programme mean to you?
I see being on the programme as a really lucky opportunity to be able to develop myself as a whole, not just as a student but as someone with a more flexible mindset that can approach most tasks with an open mind.

How has GT Scholars helped you to improve yourself?
They’ve helped me think more about my future and how I can strive to improve what’s really important to me such as my academics or way of thinking. I’ve seen a great improvement in maths and I’ve moved up from foundation grade to higher grade and also reached my target grade. With mentoring, I’ve grown a lot and I’m more confident than before and my mentor has helped me to choose subjects that align with my interests.

What were your tutor and mentor like? How did this help?
My tutor Janet has helped me improve significantly in maths which honestly, is a subject that I’ve struggled with but now I enjoy the subject and am improving greatly. My mentor Sulina was really kind and I managed to learn about her career and more about the vast educational opportunities in London. For example, I used to be reluctant about IB because of all the stigma around it but as I learnt more about it I think I am more open to applying to IB next year.

Have your grades changed since being on the programme? Did you improve in any of the subjects at school?
My grades have really improved in Maths, classwork comes more easily to me now, so my teacher often gives me more challenging tasks and it’s lead to me achieving higher grades in a subject I was once not doing so well in.

What was the best thing that your tutor taught you?
My tutor helped me learn more effective time management skills. She helped me put into place more concrete methods in my exams, like the mark a minute technique that really helped me, especially since I practised it during our sessions and in homework.

How will you apply what you have learnt during the programme to your future?
My dislike for maths has honestly gone down and I genuinely enjoy the subject sometimes, so I think the likelihood that I may choose economics as an A-Level has increased.

Understanding the Challenges Faced by Young People Living In Care

Understanding the Challenges Faced by Young People Living In Care

What's new?

In 2015, just 6% of young care leavers attended university and in 2014 over 37% of care leavers between the ages of 17 and 19 were not in education, employment or training (NEET). In addition, according to Crisis UK, one third of care leavers become homeless within the first two years of leaving care and 25% of homeless people are care-experienced.

Young people living in care, also known as looked after children, are young people not living with their biological parents due to a variety of reasons. Some of the most common reasons for a child or young person being taken into care include abuse, neglect, family breakdown or a parent or child’s illness or disability.

In 2018, there were 75,420 children in care in England according to the Department for Education. The care system is well established, however young people living in care still face various challenges that hampers their success.

This means that young people living in care are still far behind compared to their peers when it comes to academic attainment and career prospects. In fact, according to the Department for Education, care leavers are unlikely to apply to university and their educational attainment at the end of school is still very low compared to other groups with just 14% achieving 5 A*-C GCSEs (including maths and English).

Young people face multiple challenges as outlined below which leads to these negative outcomes.

Instability
Due to the high number of young people living in care in England, there is significant strain on the care system. The majority of looked after children are placed in short or long term foster homes, and there are a limited number of carers in England and each carer will have a limited number of places. This means that young people living in care often have to go through many changes thoughout the year, with 10% of fostered children having had three or more placements in 2018 according to the Department for Education. This instability means that young people living in care can often become withdrawn and develop a sense that nobody really cares about them. They often feel that they have no control over their lives, which leads to low aspirations and attachment issues.

Adoption can provide a more stable living situation, but the number of looked after children with a placement order for adoption has fallen by 44% since 2014. Additionally, according to the Consortium of Voluntary Adoption Agencies, in September 2018, there were 2730 children waiting for adoption in England and 41% of these children had been waiting eighteen months or more.

Mental Health
Young people living in care face very tough situations that has far-reaching consequences on their mental health and wellbeing. For some children and young people, being taken away from the home where they have been unsafe will be a relief. However, for many others, being separated from their parents and/or siblings will be extremely distressing. Many looked after children will be placed in a home that is far from where they live or far from where their siblings live. In some cases, they may not know where their sibling is placed. 

This distress negatively affects their mental health. They may struggle with triggers (post-traumatic stress disorder) and not be okay with certain sounds, smells, places or experiences. They may also suffer from mental health issues such as depression or anxiety, and struggle with psychological issues such as attachment disorder as they find it difficult to build close, secure, trusting relationships with people around them.

Problems at School
Understandably, young people living in care often struggle at school. According to research from the Department for Education (Care leavers’ Transition to Adulthood 2015) and research from Howard League for Penal Reform (Criminal Care 2016), young people who have lived in care between the ages of 10 and 17 are five times more likely to be excluded from school. They are also more likely to struggle with learning, with over 68% of looked after children being diagnosed with one or more Special Education Needs or Disabilities (SEND).

Together with learning difficulties, they also often struggle with social difficulties at school. Many of them do not want friends at school to know that they are living in care, and this can add to the burden of having to pretend that they are living with a parent or a family member even though they are living with a carer. Many looked after children will also have developed a sense of having to protect themselves and take care of themselves and may struggle with trusting adults such teachers and support staff at school.

GT Scholars seeks to help young people living in care to work around the challenges they face through the Raising Aspirations Programme. This programme will use a multi-strategy approach combining one-to-one mentoring, enrichment days, and skill-building workshops.

The one-to-one mentoring will help them work on their career aspirations and personal development. In a report called Forging futures through mentoring 2018 by The Children’s Commissioner, it was stated that looked after children themselves appear to value mentoring because of the soft skills such as self-belief and confidence that are imparted through mentoring programmes. The report also stated that mentoring has a positive impact on looked after children’s relationships with others.

Many young people living in care struggle with a lack of awareness of opportunities along with low confidence and lack of self-belief and this impacts their academic attainment at school and their likelihood of pursuing certain careers and professional routes after school. However, many universities have teams dedicated to increasing the number of care leavers that apply to and study at their university. In addition to this, many companies are providing work experience specifically to care leavers, especially since the introduction of The Care Leaver Covenant 2018.

The Raising Aspirations Programme will aim to bridge the gap between young people living in care and the universities and companies that want to reach them. The enrichment days and skill-building workshops take place at top-tier universites and companies across London to help these young people to build academic and career aspirations and develop the strategies and skills to achieve them.

If you want to find out more about the Raising Aspirations Programme and how you can get more involved, then contact us today. GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. Our after-school tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programme is designed to help young people aged 11-18 achieve their academic and career aspirations.

An Interview with a Parent: ”The online maths tutoring sessions have definitely helped her excel in maths. ”

An Interview with a Parent: ”The online maths tutoring sessions have definitely helped her excel in maths. ”

Parent Spotlight What's new?

We had the pleasure of interviewing a parent of one of the scholars on the Bright Ambitions Programme this term. It was great to hear about her experience with the programme and to find out if being on the programme made any positive impact on her daughter’s life.

How did you find out about GT Scholars?
We first got introduced to the programme when Laura’s religious (RE) teacher passed on information about a GT Scholars Workshop called the Career Insight: Pre Launch Event. Laura was very interested in going and shared the information with me. Just days before, my friend and I had a conversation about career choices and about the fact that most young people do not have enough in-depth information on different careers these days. After she attended the workshop she was fascinated by the different career choices available to her. This workshop was a real eye-opener for my daughter and after the workshop, she decided she was not completely set on pursuing a career as an architect and wanted to look more into a career in business. Since then, she’s been thinking about a career where she can combine her love for art and her interest in business.

Have you seen any positive change in your daughter since she joined the Bright Ambitions programme?
I’ve definitely seen a lot of improvement in her maths. It’s great because I cannot help her that much with maths since it’s not one of my strong areas. It was important for her to fill in the gaps on areas that she’s been struggling with. Maths is an important subject for my daughter because she’ll definitely need it for the career paths she’s interested in. Since having her regular online tutoring and mentoring sessions she’s become more confident. She recently completed her exams and we are very pleased with the results. My daughter has moved up an entire set in Maths and she is also one of the top two students of her class!

Do you feel that it was worth enrolling Laura to the Bright Ambitions programme?
I would say yes, it was definitely worth it. The online maths tutoring sessions have definitely helped her excel in maths and the mentoring sessions have helped build her confidence and made her more open-minded.

As a parent, how did you find interacting with the tutors and mentors?
I am very pleased with Derek, he is a very nice guy and he’s absolutely wonderful as a tutor. Our mentor, Rachel is also a wonderful lady and my daughter gets on well with her. She really guided her on finding her own career path and keeping her options open.

What do you like about the fact that tutoring is done online?
What I like most about online tutoring is the convenience of it. It eliminates the stress of having to travel to a location for every tutoring session and my daughter can enjoy her tutoring sessions in the comfort of our home. The fact that there is a dedicated tutor that works with her to reach her goals is also great.

Would you recommend GT Scholars to other parents out there looking for a tutoring and mentoring programme?
Yes, I would because I think it works out and is worth it in the end. The results are great!

In the Know – Work Experience for Young People!

In the Know – Work Experience for Young People!

Careers In The Know What's new? Work experience Young people

Work experience provides young people with an insight into an exciting, new environment. It can help them decide if a career is for them, help them build essential employability skills and also be a nice addition to their CVs. This week, we bring you three work experience programmes for young people to consider.

PwC – Digital Insight Week
PwC has an exciting week planned for young people in Year 12 who are interested in pursuing careers in technology. Young people will get tuition from technology experts and learn key employability skills. This programme will run during the summer in 2019 and applications close January 31st. For more information, click here.

Rolls Royce – Work Experience Programme
Rolls Royce is offering young people the chance to see first-hand how they use STEM subjects every day. Young people will get to experience the career possibilities that Rolls Royce offers and earn an Industrial Cadet accreditation to show that they have developed valuable employability skills. Applications for 2019 are now open. To find out more about requirements click here.

Royal Museums Greenwich – Work Experience
Royal Museums Greenwich is offering work experience to young people over the summer. The 2019 programme is open to young people from a variety of levels and is a great opportunity for those interested in art and design. Young people can choose from the National Maritime Museum, Royal Observatory Greenwich, Cutty Sark or Queen’s House. To find out how to apply, click here.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. We run after-school and weekend programmes that help young people achieve their academic and career aspirations. Our programmes include tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-18. Contact us if you would like to know more about any of our programmes and courses.

In the Know – Entrepreneur, Engineer or Director?

In the Know – Entrepreneur, Engineer or Director?

Careers In The Know What's new? Young people

Did you know that fun activities can help young people identify their skills, strengths and what career they would like to pursue? They often don’t know if they’re interested in something unless they try it out. That is why this week, we have three great activities for young people to explore future careers!

Dragon’s Den Challenge
In order to give young people a taste of what it takes to be an entrepreneur, GT Scholars are hosting a Dragon’s Den Challenge based on the world-famous TV show. This FREE event for young people aged 11-16 explores the concept of entrepreneurship while imparting practical skills such as being creative, negotiating, communicating well and critical thinking. Book your tickets here.

Family Masterclass at the The Royal Institution
The Royal Institution is hosting a hands-on engineering workshop for families to design and construct a shelter. This workshop uses a hand operated STIXX machine will turn six sheets of newspaper into a solid structural rod which can be used to build your shelter. This will be a great test of the entire family’s engineering skills, design and creativity. To book tickets, click here.

TheatreCraft
TheatreCraft is a free careers event for young people aged 16-30 seeking an off-stage career in theatre. It is an ideal place to be for a unique glimpse into ‘behind the scenes’ careers like direction, stage management, producing, lighting and even designing. Theatre professionals will be on hand to provide tips and advice to young people considering this career path. To find out more, click here.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit organisation and registered charity. We run after-school and weekend programmes that help young people achieve their academic and career aspirations. Our programmes include tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-18. Contact us if you would like to know more about any of our programmes and courses.

In The Know – Get Creative this Summer!

In The Know – Get Creative this Summer!

Careers In The Know What's new? Young people

This week our newsletter takes a look at some creative learning opportunities for young people! The summer holidays are a perfect time for young people to explore the vast range of careers which are available to them and set goals for the future. Here are three creative events to introduce you to new careers!

Interested in the digital world?
Vodafone brings you this unique camp which provides a simple introduction to the hottest technologies in a day. The camp is designed for young people aged 14-18 who are interested about pursuing a career in the digital world. Professionals from both technical and creative backgrounds will be on hand to advise young people about career opportunities and inform them about the skills required. Registered participants of the camp can also apply for a 1-week work experience at Vodafone.To book your ticket, click here.

Architecture workshops with RIBA
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) host a variety of workshops to introduce young people to the field of architecture. One of the exciting workshops available this August is a design day where young people aged 11-15 will be challenged to make a small wind powered generator and to design a building that will incorporate it. Booking is essential if you would like to attend. More details can be found here.

Try Graphic Design out
The Create Place at St. Margaret’s House brings you Zines for Teens this August. A zine (pronounced zeen) is a mini- magazine produced by one person. This free workshop will let young people’s creative sides shine when designing a zine concerning topics important to them whilst also learning essential graphic design skills. Young people aged 12-16 can take part in this free three part workshop. To find out more, click here.   

GT Scholars runs after-school and weekend programmes that help young people achieve their academic and career aspirations. Our programmes include tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-18. If you would like to know more about our programmes, please contact us here.

In The Know – Explore Career Options!

In The Know – Explore Career Options!

Careers Events In The Know What's new?

We all know that learning does not always have to take place in a classroom. One of the best ways you can learn is by trying out new things outside of the classroom! This week we’ve put together three exciting ways to explore career options this summer and learn new things whilst having fun!

For the Engineers – The Holiday Makers
Year of Engineering has created a free programme called The Holiday Makers to keep young people’s minds active over the summer. From inspiring challenges to hands-on activities, this programme enables young people to learn more about engineering and the wonderful opportunities it can bring. New challenges will be announced every week during July and August. Best part is, there are prizes up for grabs! To get started, click here.

For the Fashionistas – The V & A Museum
The V & A Museum in London is not only just the world’s leading museum of art and design; they offer interesting courses for young people to learn and enjoy! Coming up next week are workshops for any budding fashionistas who would like to learn how to create and cut their own patterns. Being able to pattern cut is an essential skill for anyone interested in creating clothes and being involved in the fashion industry. Find out more about this workshop and others available here.

For the Coders – CoderDojo
CoderDojo is a global network of free, volunteer-led, community-based programming clubs for young people. Anyone aged seven to seventeen can visit a Dojo where they can learn to code, build a website, create an app or a game, and explore technology in an informal, creative, and social environment. The best news is that there are Dojos all over! Click here to locate your closest one.

GT Scholars runs after-school and weekend programmes that help young people achieve their academic and career aspirations. Our programmes include tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-18. If you would like to know more about our programmes, please contact us here.

In The Know – Creative Activities for the Holidays!

In The Know – Creative Activities for the Holidays!

In The Know What's new? Young people

The holidays are often a time when parents run out of activities to keep their children stimulated, excited and off the couch! This week, we give you 3 great opportunities for your child to discover something new and may even introduce them to exciting new career options.

Young Creatives at the Roundhouse
The Roundhouse’s Young Creatives drop-in sessions are designed to give young people aged 11-25 a taste of what it’s like to work in the creative industries. Most sessions last around 2 hours and include sessions on radio, DJing, music production and even magic! Sessions cost anything from £2 – £30. You can find out more about when and where the different sessions will be held on their website.

The Science Museum
The Science Museum in London is offering a variety of exhibitions and interactive galleries to keep young people enthusiastic about science. From the Wonderlab to a descent into space using VR, the Science Museum has an array of immersive and interactive activities. Another exciting opportunity is the Live Science Project in which scientists carry out research in the museum using visitors as volunteers. They conduct fun, interesting experiments in which you can join in on. Find out more about bookings and available activities here.

Young Barbican
A part of the world-class arts and learning centre Barbican; the Young Barbican scheme gives 14–25 year olds discounted access to unmissable art and entertainment as well as exclusive events and creative opportunities. Music, theatre, dance and film tickets are available to Young Barbican members at amazing prices (£5-£15) and their Creative Learning programmes will give your child the chance to expand their talents and passions. It’s free to join and there are no booking fees. Find out more here.

GT Scholars offers after-school programmes that help young people to achieve their academic and career aspirations. Our programmes include mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-18. If you would like to know more about our programmes, please contact us here.

How you can make a difference as an Events Team Volunteer and help us at our events, workshops and courses!

How you can make a difference as an Events Team Volunteer and help us at our events, workshops and courses!

Volunteer roles Volunteers

About GT Scholars
The GT Scholar’s programme is a social enterprise that consists of two programmes: The Academic Programme which offers online one-to-one tutoring and the Awards Programme that focuses on mentoring.

As part of both programmes, we also offer free access to our enrichment and skill building events that are hosted throughout London.  These events are designed for young people aged 11-18 years of age and include activities such as STEM activity days, study skill workshops and career days and trips to the city. We also run parent workshops and community engagement events to ensure that parents are aware of the academic and career opportunities available to their children.

What makes us different?
There are a range of charitable organisations and social enterprises offering programmes to improve the life chances of young people. However, The GT Scholars programme has the capacity to work with all state school pupils, not just those on Free School Meals. This means that pupil parents do not have to be on benefits and pupils do not need to be referred by their school in order to qualify for support.

What does volunteering at an event involve?
Volunteers who are interested in getting involved and supporting us at our events can help assist with various tasks and responsibilities.

  • You will need to arrive on time. If an event starts at 10:00am you will need to be there by 9:30am to meet the team and gain an overview of the event with the event coordinator.
  • You will help with setting up and clearing up at events.
  • You will assist to coordinate a smooth arrival and registration as well as departure for attendees and other guests. This can also include maintaining the register and managing any late attendees.
  • Assist with the coordination of lunch or refreshments for attendees.
  • Support workshop facilitators with managing groups of young people or parents.
  • Help with the distribution of stationary and workshop material.
  • Assist the event coordinator with ensuring the health and safety of attendees and overall risk management at events.
  • Give feedback to the event coordinators and programme managers at the end of each event.

When and where do our events take place?
Our events take place throughout various parts of London. Our events mostly take place on Saturdays from 10am to 4pm and we often have some events on weekday evenings, like our volunteer meetups, which takes place from 6pm to 9pm.

How much time do Event Team Volunteers commit to?
This is a flexible volunteering role. You will be volunteering as part of the Events Team and you’ll need to be available for approximately 6 events per year. All of our events take place on the weekend or weekday evenings and range from 2 to 8 hours in length.

To get started you’ll need to:
Be passionate and committed to tackling educational inequality

  • Be able to support at events as part of a diverse Events Team
  • Enjoy working with children and young people
  • Be able to remain calm under pressure
  • Be punctual and organised
  • Possess strong communication skills
  • Have excellent time management skills
  • Be able to work well as part of a team

Other important information for this role:
Please note that this is a volunteering role where you will be interacting with young people, therefore the following information must be noted:

  • Enhanced DBS check –  Before you can join the Events Team you will need to have a valid Enhanced DBS check that is dated within the last three years. If you do not have one we can process one for you. Please contact our office for further information on this.
  • Pictures – Please refrain from taking any pictures on the day, especially of the young people this forms part of our data and security policy. The volunteer photographer/videographer at the event will be responsible for capturing the day.
  • GDPR – To ensure we comply with the latest GDPR rules all data must be treated as confidential and must be returned to the events coordinator at the end of the event. Especially documents such as the attendance register.
  • Training – You will be provided with support and training for your role and will be briefed with any additional information on the day of the event.
  • Travel expenses -Any travel expenses within London will be reimbursed up to the amount of £12 for any session.

How to apply: Please attach your CV and a short cover letter through our contact form.