Everton Free School is delighted to announce that world renowned educationalist Sir Ken Robinson has joined the School as its Patron.
Knighted in 2003 for Services to the Arts, Sir Ken is an English author, speaker and international advisor on education in the arts to government, non-profits, education and arts’ bodies.
Born at 45 Spellow Lane in Liverpool, Sir Ken is a lifelong Evertonian and has taken a keen interest in the Free School and how the alternative education offered will benefit future generations of young people across Merseyside.
On Thursday 10 July, Sir Ken - who is the brother of former Toffee Neil - and his family came to Goodison Park where they were greeted by Everton Free School Principal Adrian Packer and Blues' legend Ian Snodin before making a short trip to revisit his childhood home.
The party then made their way to the Free School Spellow Lane development site and were given a tour around the impressive facility, which is scheduled to open in September 2014. Sir Ken even imprinted his hands in concrete to provide the Free School with a lasting legacy which will form part of a feature wall on the entrance to Spellow Lane.
Speaking following his visit, Sir Ken said, “It’s wonderful to be back here today in the area that I grew up in; it’s very nostalgic. It’s a great feeling to be back but it is also a very forward looking moment because it is a new School and it is facing the future and I’m thrilled about it.
“For Everton Free School to be in the shadows of Goodison Park and to have this sort of intimate connection with the community with engaging local kids and giving them a chance here is fantastic and so representative of what Everton Football Club stands for.”
“In order to create authentic learning experiences it is important to listen, be bold and find the best collaborators,” added Everton Free School principal Adrian Packer. “Today was a momentous day in our history because all those factors came together in spectacular fashion.
“I was particularly struck by the spirit of collaboration - we revelled in the joy of bringing together Sir Ken Robinson, one of the brightest minds in education, Everton Football Club, our students and staff, the architects and builders of our new Spellow Lane home. Today we saw the future of education and it looked amazing!"
Launched in September 2012 by Everton in the Community, Everton Free School caters for young people aged 14-19 and offers an alternative education pathway to those who have become detached from traditional schooling. The school delivers an innovative, personalised curriculum and is supported by local stakeholders, industry partners and Further and Higher Education.
Everton in the Community were the first Club community scheme in the country to be awarded funded by the Government to open a Free School, a ground-breaking initiative for young people across Merseyside.