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Schools Visit 2018

The Brewers’ Company takes its responsibility as Trustee to our various charities very seriously.  The largest charity administered by the Company is the Dame Alice Owen Foundation, which supports Dame Alice Owen’s School in Potters Bar and educational projects in Islington.  Each January representatives from the Court and the Advisory Committee to the Foundation visit schools which are benefiting from the work of the Foundation.

The day began at Gillespie Primary School where the Science for Life programme was founded. Science for Life is a partnership of a dozen primary schools and two secondary schools in the borough of Islington, collaborating on a common goal: to work together to develop the science capital of the children in the Borough. The aim is to address the problem of limited and imbalanced science aspirations among school children and young people in the UK.

The visitors heard from students participating in the Upward Bound programme which aims to increase the success of targeted 13-16 year old pupils from eight Islington secondary schools by enabling them to achieve (at least) five A*-C grades at GCSE, supporting their progression to full-time Further Education or Sixth Form education and helping them to obtain a University place.

This was followed by a presentation from Company Three, one of the UK’s leading theatre companies making theatre with young people. They train and support a permanent ensemble of 75 young people from Islington aged 11-19, all of whom are referred to Company Three by teachers, youth workers or social workers as someone who will benefit from participating.

The group then moved on the Holloway School where they saw performances by MiSST (Music in Secondary Schools Trust) students from Holloway and the nearby schools, St Mary Magdalene Academy, City of London Academy Highgate Hill and City of London Academy Highbury Grove.  The performance included pieces by Bach, Beethoven and Sir Karl Jenkins and was a wonderful demonstration of the Trust’s aim to promote the education of young people by providing classical musical instruments, 3 years of group tuition, and performance opportunities to over 3,700 students.

The visit concluded at Dame Alice Owen’s School, where the visitors went back to the classroom to see demonstrations of some of the innovative teaching methods the School is using, as well as learning more about the work the School is doing to support students with special educational needs.

As always, it was fantastic for the Trustee to see and hear the results of the work of the Dame Alice Owen Foundation.  During the MiSST presentation, Highbury Grove students performed songs they had composed about Holloway Road, here is one of them:

The Place to Be
By Kathleen Estuesta

Walk beneath the bridge
White smoke smelling strange
Phone beep in your pocket
Beggar asks for change

Holloway is the place to be
But do you really see?

Poundland, Sainsburys, Archway
Old man lying sprawled
Check my phone, can’t help it
Hundredth time, she hasn’t called

Holloway is the place to be
But do you really see?