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T3023 Schools without Walls

Comments (8)
Closes: May 29, 2020 / View All
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Project Summary

We are seeking funding to employ an officer (4 days p/w) who will work with the 14 primary and 2 secondary schools in the Abergavenny and Chepstow clusters with the purpose of accessing and growing the rich social capital that exists in our communities and using this to enhance the life chances of young people in our rural communities.


The post holder would be responsible for creating and managing opportunities for pupils to participate in community projects outside the school gates, and to create opportunities for the wider community to come into schools and share their knowledge, talents and networks equitably across all schools and all pupils.

Anticipated Outcomes

The research shows that this type of approach brings benefits not only to the young people in our schools but also to the wider community through opportunities to share their passions and talents, and also through the good work that young people can accomplish by sharing their own talents. We will capture outcomes through narrative story-telling approaches to understand the effect of the programme upon key individuals in a detailed way. In addition, we will use key performance indicators. We also anticipate project based outcomes (e.g. exploring opening up schools grounds and buildings for wider community use).



  • mark

    Dear LAG Member

    I would be grateful if you could consider this funding application submitted by Jayne Edwards on behalf of the Abergavenny and Chepstow school clusters. Any comments or questions welcomed. The application should be read in conjunction with the accompanying delivery profile, RSA report on the ‘Schools without Walls’ initiative and the easy read guide to the new curriculum in Wales.

    Many thanks

  • John Harris

    Hello Mark
    Thank you for your email.
    I would support this project hopefully it would highlight the sharing of knowledge that would be available to the South East Wales school clusters.

  • phil powell

    I am supportive of this project as future education needs to be different to the curriculum focus currently used we dont yet know what the future will look like after covid-19 but its likely to include less globalisation and more localism such as local food People will need different skills not taught in the national curriculum. Such as community engagement abilities and also more local knowledge and contacts. This project looks to be an excellent way to provide these Currently children can grow up unaware there is a world class show jumping facility in their community or facilities like humble by nature hydroponic and fish farming. We may need to develop our communities prosperity Children can through this project learn about these local capabilities and then potentially use them to everyone advantage Employing the right person will be key in this project

  • Andrew David

    We need to revaluate the priorities for making best use of the funding we have left in view of the damage that the present Corvid-19 outbreak is doing to the rural economy. In my view we should be looking to support only projects that can get the rural economy going again, particularly tourism, hospitality and food production.

    We need projects that will support our many small businesses by providing expert advice on how they will be able to operate with social distancing and other hygiene requirements that could be in place for some time to come.

    One point regarding the Schools Without Walls proposal is that if it is required to meet the new curriculum it should be funded through the education budget.

  • Alastair Robertson

    This is a supportable project. However, it raises a number of issues about project evaluation and the core content and structure of the school curriculum. Also of succession planning.
    As the civil servant responsible for refining the learning goals and teaching strategies for the Youth Opportunities Programme, and also for the youth Training Scheme, now morphed into The National Apprenticeship Programme, It was quickly apparent that there was a big mismatch between what teachers were asked to teach and what many students felt was relevant to their lives and futures. I think it very important that there is much to be learned about open learning and how the best research might inform the inevitable changes arising from the Covid-19 pandemic need to be addressed in a way that is integrated with the best of classroom-based tuition rather than as a temporary sticking plaster to be discarded when the
    disease is beaten.

    This is a big challenge. What success criteria are to be used and who will assess these? What networks might need to be established locally in clusters and/or supported?

    It is a substantial task and I think beyond the capacity of one individual to facilitate and a big project risk if the initially selected candidate leaves.

  • Alastair Robertson

    See above

  • Alan Michie

    Comment from Alan Michie:

    Although it is a worthy cause, personally I would prefer to use any monies that we have left on projects that are not the Government’s and Council’s responsibility.

  • Ruth Waycott

    I like the sentiment of this project. I have a couple of queries:

    Is it possible to achieve much in just one year (a big risk factor being limitations on delivery imposed on the project due to Covid19)?

    What will happen after 1 year, how will momentum be maintained?

    What sort of job spec is there for this? The right person for this job is crucial considering time constraints and the need to have ‘ins’ to lots of communities and networks.

    I’m not quite clear about the funding/ match elements.

    In a non Covid world this would be a no brainer for support (if it isn’t something core education budgets should fund). However, in the current climate I feel we need a new way of assessing applications. Our support should be part of a wider Wales plan for recovery. I feel very strongly that all projects supported should 100% fit Green Recovery so we are placing climate change, biodiversity and localisation as the norm for any new projects. There has to be a joined up strategic approach to recovery, not a spatter gun approach (as followed Foot and Mouth).

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