A work experience programme to get teenagers with special needs into employment will be launched in a £9.5 million building.
Furze Down School in Winslow has teamed up with Equitable Life Assurance Society to set up the initiative and building work on its new school is well under way.
The state-of-the-art facility is due to open its doors at the end of the year. It will increase the school’s capacity to 140 children, aged five to 19, and provide the venue for the new programme.
Furze Down’s headteacher Sue Collins said: “I do look at it and think I can’t believe what we’ve done.
“But this investment of time and energy in the workforce of tomorrow will undoubtedly increase the life chances and employability of our young people with special educational needs.”
Equitable Life CEO Chris Wiscarson believes the work experience programme could be a blueprint for a national initiative to help thousands of teenagers grow in confidence.
He said: “Supporting the brilliant team at Furze Down School is setting an example to employers to see the benefits of creating an accessible and open workplace where everyone has the opportunity to shine.”
The progress of building work at the Furze Lane site was viewed by guests including Mr Wiscarson and Mrs Collins, as well as Shitijj Kapur last week.
Dr Kapur, dean of Institute of Psychiatry at Kings College London, described the project as ‘inspiring and rewarding’.
His daughter Aanya, 17, was recently mentored by Equitable Life as part of its existing work experience programme.