Working alongside local schools to inspire young people in STEM subjects and careers.
We are tackling skills shortages in STEM by supporting Enthuse Partnerships and growing interest, knowledge, and awareness of STEM subjects among school pupils and teachers.
DP World London Gateway, part of the new Thames Freeport, is the UK’s most integrated logistics hub; a sustainable, strategically located, trade-enabling terminal on London's doorstep. Our ambition is to lead the future of trade and we are proud to be at the heart of Britain's trading future. As part of our global Our World, Our Future initiative, we aim to deliver a legacy in oceans, women, and education.
We are acutely aware that it is not just our fantastic location and facilities that keep our business alive and thriving. We depend on our skilled and experienced workforce to power our success. However, there is a skills shortage in logistics and IT and a lack of awareness among parents, teachers, and pupils on the variety of interesting and rewarding jobs in our industry. Within schools, there is a low uptake of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and maths) subjects with significant underachievement. Our business relies on future talent, but many pupils don’t consider jobs in this industry.
We decided to address this by supporting Enthuse Partnerships, working alongside two primary and four secondary schools to improve participation in STEM subjects. The scheme aims to address skills shortages and spark interest and enthusiasm in pupils through inspiring teachers. The schools we support work together to establish mutual aims, with the ultimate goal of motivating young people to broaden their horizons around STEM careers. We also provide an informative tour of our site to bring their learning to life.
The initiative is already producing encouraging results. Teachers have attended funded training and are demonstrating the skills, knowledge, and confidence to deliver enthusiastic and high-quality teaching in STEM. While pupils are showing a better understanding of how STEM subjects are relevant to real, local jobs, and, as their interest and engagement grow, they are achieving better grades.
We are proud of working together to invest in our future and the support provided by Enthuse, our partner schools, and Planet Mark – who provide our sustainability certification – has been invaluable. To recognise the commitment of the teachers and pupils at this difficult time, we have entered the project into The Planet Mark 2021 Awards.
Recognise school workloads –
We understand that the schools we work with have existing priorities and heavy workloads, and we identified one leadership school to coordinate and facilitate actions. This school receives additional funding. This approach works well because they are in a strong position to understand the challenges and pressures that other teachers are facing.
Inspire teachers –
We are competing for the time of the teachers involved and the success of the scheme depends on their drive and commitment. Allowing teachers to set goals made an important difference, and we have seen the greatest success when teachers return from training and enthusiastically share their findings and good practice. Funding is provided to cover teacher training sessions to keep up momentum and maintain consistency.
Be flexible –
It can be frustrating when key staff leave or move on. We quickly realised that we needed to be flexible and accommodate changes and unexpected events as they happened (including a global pandemic!), keeping in mind our key goals.
Start engagement early –
We have seen fantastic engagement from primary schools because they can be more flexible. Although the children are younger, and it will take much longer for measurable results to be seen, it is important to encourage a learning environment where STEM subjects are seen as fun, interesting, and achievable.
Our Metrics –
We measure success based on pupil and teacher outcomes:
• 70% learned about different career choices that use STEM subjects.
• 93% want to learn more about jobs in the STEM industry.
• 97% agreed STEM subjects will help them to do well in life.
• 64% of girls agreed that they had a good knowledge of STEM careers, up from 34%.
• 57% of girls know the qualifications needed for a career in STEM, up from 30%.
• 75% feel confident organising activities related to STEM.
• 71% can easily identify and challenge stereotypical thinking about STEM.
• 79% feel capable of motivating students in STEM extra-curricular activities.
Read more: www.dpworld.com/