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Curriculum enhancement programme/event

The frequently asked questions ‘How does this apply in the real world?’ and ‘How is this relevant?’ have been the driving force in the launch of a fascinating and successful curriculum enhancement programme between Fairfield High School (FHS) and Burges Salmon.

Following a mapping exercise by Burges Salmon to identify relevant areas of their own staff’s knowledge and expertise (in terms of legal and business services) and linking this to GCSE subjects and key curriculum themes, the perfect fit was found - GCSE Geography. This seemed even more fitting due to the physical location of Burges Salmon’s offices within Temple Quarter and the students’ focus on active Urban Regeneration.

Hosting the workshop at these offices enabled students to experience a place of work and to interact with a number of people; thus gaining insight into various roles and career routes. The Geography GCSE topic alone related to sustainability, facilities management and real estate law. The workshops were powerful in deepening students’ knowledge in not only these areas, but encouraged interactivity, creativity, leadership, listening and problem solving.

This partnership building has also gone above and beyond with hitting Gatsby Benchmark 4 (linking curriculum with careers) and 5 (encounters with employers and employees).

Not surprisingly, the feedback from this mutually beneficial exercise was highly positive with the following students’ comments: “When you’re in a different environment it teaches you differently”, “Learning how the new and old building was built and made environmentally friendly was really interesting” plus “Learnt straight from an expert”.

Following from this curriculum enhancement came a very special invitation. The Eco-team was honoured to attend the ‘South West Responsible Business Showcase Event’ hosted by Burges Salmon. Student Islay Griffiths sat on the panel (together with her teacher Mr Walker); she did a grand job eloquently offering her views on issues surrounding climate change.

Islay comments: “It was such a great opportunity to take part in this event. It helped develop my public speaking skills and confidence to speak in front of other people. I shared what we’re doing as a school towards helping the climate, such as going plastic free and having regular meat free days.”

The feeling was mutual as Libby, England Director from Business in the Community writes:

“Could you send on our huge gratitude to Mr Walker and the students from the Fairfield High School Eco Team. Many participants cited their contribution as the most inspiring part of the evening. I personally felt very inspired by the leadership they are demonstrating, what they have already accomplished and are planning. I also thought Islay was incredibly brave to sit on the panel and speak so well in front of so many people.”

Fairfield High School and Burges Salmon have been in partnership for a number of years, and events such as these only strengthen and build upon this strong relationship.

If a parent requires a paper copy of the information on the school's website, please contact us and this will be provided free of charge