Preston North End’s Apprentices have been using their spare time this season in supporting pupils at the Club’s Playing for Success Centre.
Playing for Success is a national initiative overseen by The Department for Children, Schools and Families which provides out of school study support for pupils aged 9-14, using sport and its environment as a curriculum tool.
Making a direct contribution to the Government’s Children’s Plan (December 2007) which reinforces the message that learning outside school hours can help close the attainment gap, can personalise and make learning fun, and ultimately help young people fulfil their potential the initiative is key to raising achievement levels in literacy, numeracy and ICT while helping to develop self-esteem, motivation and independent learning skills.
The centre at Preston North End uses the subject of football, the Deepdale Stadium and the National Football Museum within its sessions and is based under the Alan Kelly Stand, in the Learning and Community Centre.
The Apprentices have been keen to lend a hand and have worked alongside centre staff to support pupils in activities as animation production, filmed interviews and team building games.
PfS Centre manager, Jane Icely, commented,
“The opportunity for the pupils to work with the youth team has added a new dimension to our programme of work. The pupils look forward to working with the players and have enjoyed the interview work, which has greatly helped their speaking and listening skills.”
“The players now have the experience of supporting young people with their education, whilst learning some new skills at the same time. I think they particularly enjoyed making the animations!”
Dean Ramsdale, PNE Director of Youth, added
“I have experienced fifteen years of youth/community development and fully appreciate what players can add to learning experiences of young children. Playing for Success has been and continues to be a fantastic addition to conventional classroom tutorial.”
“It is also important that our young players become involved in participating in projects such as this as it helps their personal development and gives them an understanding of how much in the public eye they are and what a major benefit and impact they can have.”
Steve Sutcliffe, LFE Communications Manager was also keen to endorse the work of Preston’s youngsters,
“I’m pleased to see the Youth Department engage with the Club’s community scheme. The Apprentices are looked upon as role models by the youngsters which aids the learning process. The Apprentices are able to give some of their time and put something back into the community which meets the Club’s corporate social responsibility commitment.”