The Eric Wright Learning Foundation
In 2004 the South Ribble Learning Partnership (SRLP) undertook an ambitious project to develop a vocational centre specialising in construction. In our area there was no such provision, necessitating accessing courses at another FE College. This was expensive in travel, time and funding for schools and students.
A steering group was formed with representatives from potential partners, local authorities, Learning Skills Council, Eric Wright Construction, Progress Housing, LEBP, two local FE colleges and the SRLP. The Foundation was opened in 2005 and was funded with equal contribution from each of the partners.
The Eric Wright Learning Foundation now provides training in construction related trades to 14 - 16 year old students in the South Ribble and Chorley areas as part of their GCSE programme.
The foundation offers hands on experience in joinery, brickwork and painting and decorating, practical skills which are useful throughout life no matter where your career path takes you. The courses also help to prepare students for further education and employment, gaining experience out of the classroom.
Our courses are open to all young people, both males and females from all ethnic and social backgrounds and to young people with learning difficulities, to encourage them to take up an apprenticeship route and learn a trade.
There are currently approximately 320 students enrolled with the Foundation and each student attends for a half day or full day each week.
There is a maximum class size of 15 with an average of 10 - 12 to allow students one- on-one guidance through the course.
The tutors will offer assistance with applications for further education and also help to place apprentices with local businesses such as Eric Wright Construction, who take on an apprentice from the Learning Foundation every year.
Preston's College attend the Learning Foundation to talk about progression and give career advice and Construction Skills use the centre to hold an annual open day and also offer talks to students. This ensures pupils have access to plenty of information on possible career choices important to their future.
For more information please visit: www.ewlf.co.uk