The Frank Field Education Trust has been established to develop high quality educational provision that meets the needs of our increasingly diverse communities: building social cohesion and providing outstanding opportunities for children and young people to break the cycle of disadvantage through social mobility.
Our approach builds on the 2010 Field Review into poverty and life chances, conducted by the founder of our Trust, Frank Field. This review found that the gap in cognitive, social and emotional skills between the most and least disadvantaged students starts well before children enter the education system. This gap widens still further during school years.
Our aim is to run schools that buck this national trend with the aim of equalising life chances by the time our young people leave school.
We aim to develop hubs which include not only primary and secondary schools but also services to parents before their children is even born. By taking a child from womb to 19, we hope to provide wraparound support to all children which will equal that which helps children from higher income backgrounds in their academic performance.
The high quality education we aim to deliver will ensures that all children gain the social, intellectual and cultural capital that enables them to have:
· Unlimited dreams and ideas beyond expectations.
· A vision of what they want to achieve in life and how to achieve it.
· A strong sense of duty, responsibility and service.
· Care and compassion towards each other, within the local community and the wider world.
· Choice-filled lives and the desire and motivation to develop as a good person.
· A positive contribution to local communities and wider society.
Above all else we want our pupils to have an education that gives them ‘fullness of life’, where the person that they become is of paramount importance.The promotion and development of social, intellectual and cultural capital is at the core of the Trust’s vision for promoting social justice, building social cohesion and providing outstanding opportunities for children and their offspring in turn to lead choice-filled lives in the future.
Such a vision is increasingly necessary to counter the current stagnation in social mobility.
“Since the 1980s, Social Mobility appears to have stalled or deteriorated in terms of social class and income measures respectively.Significant obstacles to social mobility remain:
· Real wage growth has stagnated, and income inequality has grown. Millennials are likely to be the first generation in modern times to earn less than their parents.
· Large educational gaps remain, and entrenched privilege continues in higher education. Students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds are still far less likely to attend universityand students from the poorest households are 55 times less likely than independent school students to attend Oxford or Cambridge.
· Access to education and job opportunities is an ongoing issue with continued evidence of opportunity 'hoarding' through networks, information asymmetries, and social bias. Even when less well-off students attend the same university and study the same subject as their wealthier peers, they earn over 10% less per year.“
Sutton Trust Report on Social Mobility 2017
We believe that a high-quality education is the catalyst whereby children from disadvantaged backgrounds can break the cycle of deprivation prevalent which scars our society today. Social Justice lies at the heart of our vision and we believe that this can only be achieved in our society when all barriers to educational success have been removed. It is our mission to ensure that all FFET academies remove those barriers and so ensure social justice outcomes for all our pupils.To ensure that the Trust becomes one of the country’s leading education providers, the Chair has brought together a highly experienced, committed and successful group of professionals to create an exceptional team with a deep commitment to social justice.
We have developed a School Improvement strategy based on our Executive Teams’ experience and knowledge of leading outstanding schools at primary and secondary level. With this expertise we believe that our students, regardless of their background, will have access to the best education and best opportunities available in the country.We also aim to develop health-visiting and midwifery services which mean we are engaging with children’s parents long before they enter formal education. By supporting and guiding parents, we hope to reduce the gap in cognitive, social and emotional development by age 5 which put children from low income backgrounds at a disadvantage by the time they start school.
We will provide a unique positive education experience not only for the children that we serve but also their parents and carers too. Families will be able to access support and services, previously denied to them, based around our local hub schools which will begin to break down the barriers that currently prevent them and their children achieving success at school and a choice-filled life.
Therefore, through a relentless commitment to delivering our vision we will provide:
· An exceptional academic education to all children (Intellectual Capital)
· A values led approach to education for every child (Cultural Capital)
· The right environment for every child to flourish by building learning communities in partnership with parents/carers (Social Capital)
Achieving these commitments will ensure that when students leave our academies, they are ready for the next step in their journey: leaving with the necessary skills and knowledge, and the desire to serve others, to become the next generation of leaders.
FFET exists to serve the students in its care. It has a small number of core principles for all schools that share our vision:
We expect all our academies to support each other actively and to share best practice for the benefit of all.
We encourage each of our academies to celebrate its distinctive identity within our Trust community.
We will provide quality-assured services to keep our academies legally, regulatory and financially robust, and continually improving.