On Thursday 2nd February, St Philip’s School in Chessington hosted their local MP, Sir Ed Davey MP, who is also the leader of the Liberal Democrat party. Sir Ed was invited to visit St Philip’s and as part of the school’s careers programme which aims to broaden the range of opportunities available to their students.
Sir Ed was taken on a tour of the school by Callum, a member of the school council, and the Deputy Headteacher. He had the opportunity to view some of the exciting and engaging lessons that were taking place and spoke to various students, teachers and trainee teachers about the school. Sir Ed last visited the school 13 years ago and there have been many changes since then, both to the site and the number of students on roll.
After the school tour, Miss Birkett, Head of KS4 and Careers Lead, raised the issue of current statistics surrounding adults with a learning disability in full-time paid employment and together with Principal Ben Walsh, discussed with Sir Ed ways to ensure a higher percentage of those with a learning disability can gain meaningful employment.
The visit was part of the school’s careers programme aimed at giving learners experiences of real-life working environments, specifically in sectors that they have shown an interest in pursuing. Students have recently visited a construction site ran by Countryside Construction and had the opportunity to try their hand at brick laying. There will be more exciting opportunities for the students over the coming months and following Sir Ed’s visit, the school hopes to raise more awareness of the issues surround young adults with learning disabilities and careers/employment.