Leeds City Academy


Make the Grade


Leeds City Academy’s Make The Grade programme with The Ahead Partnership saw hundreds of students engage with businesses from across the region. Leeds City Academy has taken part in 13 business-led activities, with the overall aim of supporting the students’ employability skills and awareness of how the subjects they study at school relate to the world of work. Activities included; mock interview skills sessions, a Leeds City Region STEM event for Girls, industry-led cross school challenges, contextualised subject workshops, industry-related workplace visits and a unique teacher CPD event.

The first Transpennine Sector Brief was one of many highlights. Students were set the challenge to research the transportation sector with a particular focus on the roles and jobs available at Transpennine. Students were then invited to the Transpennine training and development centre in Huddersfield where they interviewed staff from across the business. They were introduced to employees at a range of stages in their career - from Train Conductors to Directors - and heard about the skills and attributes Transpennine look for in their future workforce. The experience and interviews were captured on film, so that students for years to come could learn from this year’s brief.

We previously reported on the Outstanding Presenter Competition. Building on the success of last year’s competition, students from the Academy were invited to take part in a research and presentation competition supported by Northern Gas Networks. Throughout the course of the challenge, the students were mentored by industry professionals and tasked to research important issues that the utilities sector faces such as futureproofing energy, fracking and women in engineering. The students were invited to a grand final where they competed and presented against other White Rose Academy schools.

A student who attended Make the Grade said: “I enjoyed learning about the new rail lines and how many jobs there will be in the future. I also learnt about progression in a company and how to do this.”

For more information about Make the Grade with The Ahead Partnership, visit their website here.