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Crawley schools invited to inspire future careers by ‘tuning in’ to Gatwick’s Learn Live broadcasts

Gatwick’s popular Learn Live broadcasts start again this week – with a live Q&A with the airport’s biodiversity experts – and every local school is invited to ‘tune in’.

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Oakwood Secondary School Horley tuning into a Learn Live broadcast from Gatwick's control tower.

The online broadcasts are designed to encourage local children to take Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects by demonstrating their relevance to a wide range of careers at the airport. 

The first broadcast on Wednesday 18 September will take a look at biodiversity across the airport with future broadcasts exploring engineering and air traffic control.

The airport also hopes that the Learn Live programme will help to inspire the next generation of young people to consider working at Gatwick.

The programme has been viewed by over 50,000 students since it was launched in 2017 and has included live broadcasts from the airport’s Chief Executive, Chief Operating Officer as well as staff working on the airfield, the fire service and meteorological teams.

Gatwick is promoting this year’s programme by targeting local schools on social media – inviting them by showing short films from last year’s broadcasts.

Schools that want to register to watch our next Learn Live video can sign up online. All previous Learn Live broadcasts can also be viewed on Gatwick’s You Tube channel.

Paula Aldridge, Gatwick Airport’s Community Engagement Manager, said: 

Learn Live continues to be a tremendous success because it inspires young people to think about STEM subjects.  It also helps to paint a picture of the range of opportunities available at Gatwick be they related to engineering, the environment, the weather or air traffic control.”  

Stuart Heaton, Managing Director of Learn Live, said:

“We are delighted to be working with Gatwick Airport for another academic year and helping to support the STEM agenda in schools and colleges across the country.

“The live interactive broadcasts give a fantastic insight into the different job roles at one of the world’s busiest airports and how the core subjects of Maths, Science and Technology and used in the workplace. We also get the opportunity to meet the apprentices that work at Gatwick through the live broadcasts and hear their inspiring stories” 

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Extra mental health support in Crawley schools to be developed

West Sussex has been successful in a bid to develop extra mental health support in schools across two pilot areas.

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New specialist Mental Health Support Teams will work with children in over 20 schools in a joint partnership between West Sussex County Council, West Sussex Clinical Commissioning Groups and the Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

Following an analysis of need, the one-year pilot will be rolled out in north-west Crawley and in Bognor Regis and Felpham.

The specialist teams will:

• Provide one-to-one support to children with mild to moderate mental health issues, building on the support already available

• Work alongside school counsellors, nurses and designated mental health leads and introduce or develop their whole school or college approach 

• Liaise with external specialist services to help students with more severe needs to get the right support

Richard Burrett, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, said:

“One in nine young people aged five to 15 are believed to have a mental health condition and we know early intervention is crucial. So I’m delighted that West Sussex school children will benefit from this exciting new pilot and I look forward to seeing it progress.”

Dr Patience Okorie, Clinical Director Crawley CCG, said:

“This is an exciting development and has come at a time when we have seen increasing need for emotional and mental wellbeing support amongst young people. We recognise the need for early intervention and support and had found there was a huge gap for this.

“The new pilot service is a great opportunity to ensure young people get the help they need at the right time and the right place.”

Alison Wallis, Clinical Director for Children and Young People’s Services at Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“We are so pleased that we were successful in our bid for this new service and that we will be able to improve and build on the early and preventative support that we currently provide for children and young people in West Sussex.

“Young people spend a large proportion of their time at school, so it really does make sense for there to be teams based in schools who are specially trained in how to support young people if they raise concerns about their mental health or emotional wellbeing. 

“I am really looking forward to seeing the positive impact that this pilot service will make.”  

The Mental Health Support Teams will now be developed and should be up and running in West Sussex by September 2020.  

It is part of NHS England’s ambition to roll out the specialist support nationally to reach up to a quarter of the country’s young people by 2022-23.

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