Careers chief hails Cheshire business partnership

England’s school careers education chief Oli de Botton says he is ‘truly inspired’ by a Cheshire and Warrington programme linking businesses with students. Tony McDonough reports

Oli de Botton
Oli de Botton, chief executive of The Careers and Enterprise Company


A scheme that connects 86 schools and colleges with 550 businesses in Cheshire and Warrington has been called “exceptional” by England’s school careers education chief.

Oli de Botton, chief executive of The Careers and Enterprise Company, was addressing the “Bridging the Gaps” Cheshire and Warrington Pledge Partnership & Careers Hub annual conference 2023.

He said he was “truly inspired” by the partnership that links Cheshire and Warrington businesses with students of all backgrounds to prepare them for the world of work.

Attended by more than 200 delegates, the conference explored how employers, educators and other local stakeholders can work further together to address local priorities based around three key themes, skills, inclusivity and opportunity.

Underpinned by the Gatsby Benchmarks, a framework that promotes careers education excellence, the Cheshire and Warrington Careers Hub runs tailor-made projects.

These include students being interviewed by genuine recruiters at mock assessment centres, multiple careers fairs and ‘teacher encounters’. These allow school staff to engage directly with employers to explore student career pathways.

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Cheshire and Warrington Careers Hub is part of a national network of 45 Careers Hubs funded through the national body for Careers Education, The Careers and Enterprise Company.

Mr de Botton told the conference: “What you are doing here is truly inspiring.” He added the work of The Pledge Partnership and Cheshire and Warrington Careers Hub was “magnifying the impact on young people”.

“I have been blown away by the exceptional work that is going on in Cheshire and Warrington to help every young person find their next best step,” he said.

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