Justine Greening: organisations need to work together to improve social mobility in Norwich

Secretary of State for education, Justine Greening visits City College, Norwich.PHOTO: Nick Butcher

Secretary of State for education, Justine Greening visits City College, Norwich.PHOTO: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

The education secretary has stressed the need for organisations to work together to improve the life chances of children in Norwich.

Secretary of State for education, Justine Greening visits City College, Norwich.PHOTO: Nick Butcher

Secretary of State for education, Justine Greening visits City College, Norwich.PHOTO: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

Justine Greening was speaking on a visit to City College Norwich this afternoon to publicise her announcement the city would be one of 10 'opportunity areas' - six already announced, and four more yet to be named - allocated a combined £60m.

She said Norwich would 'probably get its share of that'.

She added: 'But what we really want to do is work on the ground with local communities and MPs like Chloe Smith here in Norwich to work out what's the right approach, and then the resourcing will follow from that.'

Ms Greening said the government would work with the local authority, institutions like City College, and businesses, and added: 'We need to sit down and work out where are the gaps we want to plug around careers advice, mentoring, what's the work we can do supporting schools that perhaps have not improved over recent years?


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'A lot of Norwich schools and Norfolk schools have, but some haven't and we need to lift those up as well.'

She said it was critical businesses were involved to help with work experience and traineeships.

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She added: 'That's exactly the right direction we should be going in, but what we want to do is see how we can scale all that up more so it can have more impact.'

She was asked about the government's proposals to expand the number of grammar schools, which prime minister Theresa May has said would improve social mobility.

Asked about the introduction of grammar schools in an area like Norwich with poor social mobility, she said: 'In the end it will be up to the local communities whether they want a grammar school open in their area, but what we are committed to in the meantime is making sure that opportunity areas like Norwich are lifted in terms of education outcomes for young people but also the job opportunities and career opportunities for young people, too.'

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