The practicalities

Community-Apprentice starts in September and runs for 10 months (with a short break for exams in May). Every participant has the opportunity to participate in 50 hours of structured activities as follows:

  • 20 hours of team coaching sessions (weekly)

  • 10 hours of employer mentoring (5 sessions)

  • 10 hours at structured cross-school events (3 events)

  • 10 hours structured preparation for team challenges

All these activities are arranged, organised and facilitated by Envision staff, supported by employer and community volunteers.

In addition pupils organise themselves to carry out their projects and we provide additional supervision and support where necessary.

  • Weekly coaching sessions happen in school either as an extra-curricular or enrichment activity.  Students can use participation in the programme to count towards their Duke of Edinburgh Award.  For many it is a great progression from NCS, but many also regard it as an alternative, particularly where there are issues about residential experiences.

  • Employer mentoring sessions happen in the workplace at the end of the school day.  We arrange all the practicalities, including picking up students from school.

  • For the first cross-school events we require students to be released from school for an afternoon (this is generally arranged for a Wednesday) and for the other events they may be required to leave school an hour early.  These events give pupils and opportunity to hear from amazing speakers and take part in workshops which we could not afford to provide on a school by school basis.  It also creates a sense of belonging to a wider community.

The programme is primarily aimed at year 12’s.  It is run as an inter-school competition and each participating school must enter at least two teams of at least 10 pupils.  Further detail about the programme structure and competition is here.

No school staff are required to attend sessions, although many do come to support their pupils at the pitching challenge.  We do however require a link teacher who we can talk to, if needed, about practicalities such as room bookings, permissions to leave school early for events and the needs of individual pupils.

The main way we work with schools is in identifying appropriate pupils for the programme. We want to ensure that at least two thirds of participants are disadvantaged and we have clear criteria for this such as eligibility for pupil premium, English as a second language or clear issues around self confidence.  In most schools we recruit through presentations in assemblies and are generally oversubscribed – this enable us to be selective about who we accept on to the programme and seek to engage your advice in this process.

Schools also support young people’s project for example by giving them time in assemblies to do presentations or inviting them to have a stand at parents’ evenings.  We love to showcase young people's achievements and commitment to their communitites and we are happy to produce copy for your website.