Sheffield Children’s University gained 3,000 new students last year as over 43,000 children across the city took part in a learning outside of school initiative.
In 2018, nine new activities were also introduced in schools as part of the Children’s University Acorn Fund; a scheme that enables children and young people to bid for funds to develop, sustain or re-invigorate an activity in their school.
Opportunities to earn credits were available throughout Sheffield as the CU teamed up with organisations such as Sheffield BID, Sheffield theatres and South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue to provide learning activities for children.
Children who take part in the initiative gain one CU credit per hour of engagement and are awarded certificates for every milestone they reach, up to 1000 hours.
Councillor Jayne Dunn, cabinet member for education and skills, said: “Sheffield Children’s University is growing from strength to strength and it is great to see the work being done to encourage even more children to get involved in learning outside of school.
“The activities held last year were a brilliant success, and I look forward to seeing what 2019 has in store for the children and young people who are working hard to achieve new skills that they should be proud of and will prepare them for their future careers.”
During 2018, the CU gave out nearly 15,000 awards and held its first ever graduation experience for the 25 children who earned the Gold Fellowship award, having achieved 1000 hours of learning in their own time.
The recipients were presented with outstanding achievement awards and took part in official photos and a toast during graduation week at Sheffield Hallam University.
Sheffield Children’s University now hopes to build even further on its success this year and is currently working in partnership with Sheffield Hallam University to develop a South Yorkshire Children’s University, which includes plans to develop new CU centres in Rotherham and Barnsley to support the existing provision already in place in Doncaster and Sheffield.
Sheffield Children's University (CU) is part of a national initiative that encourages and celebrates participation in a wide range of inspiring learning opportunities outside school hours.
Research in Sheffield shows that children and young people who participate in out of school CU activities achieve better at both KS2 and KS4 and exceed their estimated results, whereas Non CU pupils do not meet their estimates.
For more information about how to register for Sheffield Children’s University visit www.sheffield.gov.uk/cu, email CU@sheffield.gov.uk or 0114 2813761.