As the winter 2021 lockdown continues, hundreds of school students and their parents across Essex have taken up the opportunity to get involved with an innovative educational event – the Lockdown Learning Festival – provided by outreach organisation Make Happen.
Since Monday 1 February, Make Happen has been offering students in years 7 to 13 – and their parents – open, free access to a range of more than 30 webinars, workshops and advice sessions, plus videos on demand to view at their leisure. The festival spans five days, ending Friday 5 February.
Sessions for students range from focusing on study tips and attainment goals, to exploring university life, and careers beyond. Parents can also find out more about how to help their teenagers study at home, plus sessions on honing their digital skills and help with motivating their teenagers, too.
An evening session on 2 February, Motivate your teenager! hosted by educational motivation expert Mr Beezy, saw 100 parents log in and attend. One parent said: “It was very interesting and eye opening! Loved the motivation section, brilliant tips which I will put into action straight away.”
By midweek hundreds of students had attended sessions, including a Push talk to help turn setbacks into successes, and Workplace Wednesday, career-focused talks which invite guests, from solicitors to TV sports producers, to talk about their career pathways.
Stephen Pomfret, Head of Collaborative Outreach for Make Happen, said: “COVID-19 and successive lockdowns have been so challenging for students, parents, and teachers, but we’ve remained committed to ensuring that students across Essex have first-rate access to keep learning, stay focused, and to keep discovering more about their future opportunities and options after school; be that a university degree, or an apprenticeship.
“We’re delighted that so many students and parents across Essex have been logging on and taking part in these open-access, free and informative sessions.”
Make Happen, which is based at the University of Essex, unlocks opportunities for young people across Essex by helping them make informed choices about their education and future.
It is part of the Office for Students’ Uni Connect programme, and works in partnership with schools, colleges and universities across Essex, to deliver outreach programmes to young people with a particular focus on areas where participation in higher education is lower than might be expected, given the GCSE results of the young people who live there.
Since 2017, at least 75,000 students across Essex have accessed Make Happen activities including events, workshops and tours.
If you would like to find out more about the festival or other initiatives from Make Happen, or interview Stephen Pomfret, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org