This week, the government outlined its plans for a new national SCITT for computing, with the Department for Education looking for organisations to run a “national computing school-centred initial teacher training” (SCITT) programme to “ultimately design a unique and high-quality school-led offer in this priority subject”. It was timely, then, that I made a visit to the London Connected Learning Centre in Lambeth to explore their offer and to see how we could re-define our local offer at our own CLC here in Camden.

We met the inspirational Sarah Horrocks who is the Director at the London CLC, who took us around the centre and outlined the offer to schools, CPD to staff and their connections to various partnerships. It was clear that their partnership with the Education Development Trust provides a respected partner, but also an accountability framework. What the visit did do was to invigorate our own thinking about the possibilities that exist for the Camden City Learning Centre and how we can to develop our own offer to schools. With some considered business planning and modest investment, we can take advantage of the CLC’s geographical position, sitting at the heart of the Knowledge Quarter, and meet the imperative to move into the world of computer science and online safety, filmmakers, music technologists, designers and post 16 learning.

At the secondary head teachers meeting this week, heads were reminded about the opportunity to bid for the Youth Safety Fund, following the recommendations from the Youth Safety Taskforce, set up by Georgia Gould, the Leader of Camden Council. I know of a number of schools who are coming together to submit a bid for the funding, which will help to enact the recommendations of the Taskforce, which called for a whole community approach to tackle youth violence. If you are planning to make a bid, could you let me know, so that I am then aware of the potential themes emerging; we can also consider how Camden Learning can partner and support your bid. Local young people will be among those joining the panels to assess applications, which can be made for projects running for one or two years under two categories, under £5,000 per year (£10,000 total) and £5,000 to £25,000 per year (£50,000 total). The deadline for applications is the 31st March.

Jon Abbey

Managing Director, Camden Learning


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