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Government announces £18m extension to Opportunity Area programme.

Education Secretary, Gavin Williamson, has announced a further £18m will be made available to support schemes under the DfE’s Opportunity Area initiative.

The programme, which is designed to help improve educational outcomes, career advice and attracting teachers in the most disadvantaged communities is already showing benefits following an initial £72 million funding in 2017.

Operating in 12 areas across the country including Blackpool, Derby, Norwich, Oldham, North Yorkshire Coast, West Somerset, Bradford, Doncaster, Fenland and East Cambridgeshire, Hastings, Ipswich and Stoke-on-Trent, benefits are already being realised in literacy, maths, attendance, teacher training and recruitment, post-16 options and careers advice.

Williamson said, ‘Ability is evenly spread across the country, but opportunity isn’t. We’re determined to put right the wrongs of places left behind and see the Opportunity Area programme grow - helping local leaders and schools to tackle some of the greatest challenges young people face.’

The funding extends the programme into a fourth year, which will run until August 2021, to help sustain long term improvements and outcomes.

Interface is pleased to be directly involved with some of these initiatives.

Read more here.