Mentors Needed for Special Mission; Management Training and Education

Article excerpt

BUSINESS mentors are being sought to make their mark on a highly successful programme improving GCSE results in Newcastle schools.

The motivational programme Operation 607 - designed and run by Newcastle Education Business Partnership (EBP) - has helped more than 300 teenagers through their GCSEs since 2003, showing a 50% improvement in results every year since its inception.

Mentors who offer their time once a month to support youngsters on the programme benefit from the experience, building on their own professional development skills while helping youngsters develop employable skills such as team work, communication and self discipline.

"Under the programme, pupils are set tasks based on James Bond-themed missions," said Newcastle EBP general manager Gillian Bulman. "It was originally designed for boys because they were lagging behind the girls, but it has done so well that girls are now taking part.

"More schools want to give their pupils the chance to benefit from these programmes, but we can only expand further with the help of partner businesses."

Gillian designed the first programme in partnership with deputy head teacher Alan Glynn in 2002 in response to a direct appeal from Walbottle Campus in Newcastle, naming it Operation 603 (2003 being the year in which the programme's graduates would complete their GCSEs). …