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To mentor or not to mentor, that is the question!



When I was in 6th form 10 years ago I took part in what is known as the "Young Enterprise Scheme". It was an eye opening experience, and gave me an insight into how running a business really worked.......granted to we didn't do exceptionally well in it - I think we made about £200 profit for 1 years work, split between 6 people. All the same, it was fun (we made and sold jewellery), and I learnt things I don't think I would have done in class.

All the memories from my Young Enterprise experience came flooding back when we had a call from the local co-ordinator of Sussex's Young Enterprise scheme, who asked if we thought Sussex students would be interested in being mentors for local school aged groups taking part in the scheme. When I did Young Enterprise we only had 1 business mentor.....she was a very dedicated and helpful woman, but she seemed far too removed from us 17 year olds - she was in her 50s, was very brash, and wore a suit - not exactly the type of person we'd hang around with back then (or now for that matter!). I'm pretty sure that Young Enterprise will have moved things forward a bit since then, and will have business advisors for the kids from a wide background of industries, cultures and attitudes, which is great. I think that the fact that they are giving the groups 2 advisors - 1 "business" advisor (ie someone that has had their own business, charity or social enterprise) and 1 students advisor is a great thing. It will mean the Young Enterprise groups will have a richer pool of advice to bounce ideas from. Having a student that may not be an expert in business, but who is obviously far more mature and experienced in life in general will be a huge asset to them.

Not only will the school kids benefit, though, I also think it would be a massive personal development opportunity for the mentors - not just the student ones, but business the ones too. It will be a big learning opportunity for both parties, as well as being a great opportunity to give something back to the community.

We will be holding an information evening where any student will be able to apply for this opportunity, as well as find out more about what is involved. At the moment we understand that the student mentor must be prepared to give up 1 hour a week to their group to offer support and guidance, during term time.

If you're interested it would be great to see you on Thursday 23rd October, at BSMS foyer (white and glass building next to Sussex House) at 5.30pm. It should last for 1 hour.

To find out more about this, and similar opportunities please go to


SEN GREEN PAPER - 14 June 2011, Friends Meeting House



Information Evening Richard Rieser discusses SEN Green Paper . June 14th 7pm , Friends Meeting House , Ship St , Brighton .
An invitation to an information evening on the green paper 'Support and Aspiration: A new approach to Special Educational Needs & Disability'.

Please make sure you are able to come -
If you feel strongly about equality in education
If you have children - with or without SEN - who are happy and making progress in mainstream schools
If you would like to improve access to teaching and learning for all children in mainstream schools
If you have concerns about such radical changes happening at a time of significant cuts in budgets 
If you have questions about the green paper and its effect on equality and inclusion for all pupils

Our speaker is Richard Rieser, a campaigner for equality and inclusion for all children in mainstream schools, a teacher and trainer with knowledge and experience of the education system in the UK of over 30 years, a consultant on inclusive education worldwide.