IG Group and Teach First Launch £2M Education Fund Due to Covid-19 Crisis

Teach First and IG Group (“IG”), are pleased to announce a unique, £2 million fund designed to tackle the impact of COVID-19 on the education of our most vulnerable young people, building on the existing charity partnership established last year, between the UK education charity and the online trading company. This funding and partnership will be integral to Teach First’s efforts to support schools through this unprecedented crisis. The seed funding from IG is a huge start to Teach First’s drive to provide a bespoke programme of recovery for schools in poorer areas which bear the disproportionate burden of COVID-19. Teach First and IG are cognisant that the education gap for pupils growing up in poverty will widen as a result of time out of school and the increased hardships faced by many families. After the immediate crisis has passed, disadvantaged pupils and schools will be left even further behind. The initiative is designed to help the schools serving pupils in greatest need to recover and pick-up where they left off before the disruption, sustaining real improvements along the way. Teach First is aiming to work with 100 schools and seed funding from IG sees the charity off to a racing start by supporting an initial 32 schools in need of immediate support. The funding provided by IG will go directly towards the education of upwards of 40,000 pupils over a period of three years, in order to make a genuine, long-term impact. Key features of the initiative will include:

  • Support for senior leadership teams working in schools serving disadvantaged areas to help them develop and implement recovery strategies, as well as embed and sustain improvements

  • Support Teach First to recruit, train and place high quality trainee teachers

  • Assistance in ‘return to school’ activity

  • Additional learning opportunity for pupils to “catch up” based on current dislocation to reduce the widening gap between the rich and the poor

IG employees will be given the opportunity to engage in this programme for its duration, including visits to the schools and workplace visits to the business by the pupils. The £2 million commitment to Teach First is part of IG’s Brighter Future Fund, a £5 million fund launched earlier today to improve the educational opportunity for those most impacted by COVID-19 around the world. IG’s Brighter Future Fund will also set aside £2 million to work with a range of global partners and their international network members, in those communities of which IG is a part. The remaining £1 million will be used by IG teams globally to fund smaller local-led initiatives in order to support their own individual communities. IG launched its internal Brighter Future initiative last year, as part of its global ESG programme, which focuses on coordinating and improving the environmental and social impact that IG has within the wider world and the communities it is part of. In order to set a clear direction for IG’s Brighter Future initiative, IG’s global team were surveyed on the key areas they wanted the programme to focus on, with IG’s impact on the environment and improving education and social mobility being established as clear priorities. The company launched its initial charity partnership with Teach First in October 2019 targeted at improving the education of those children in schools most in need by helping to train 16 teachers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (“STEM”) subjects. Russell Hobby, Chief Executive of Teach First, said: “Teachers and schools are doing a fantastic job working to ensure no child is shut out during this pandemic. But the challenges in already disadvantaged communities are far more severe, with additional pressure risking young people’s futures. We urgently need to stand behind the pupils and teachers in greatest need. “This generous donation from IG Group will be life changing for many young people. It will make a huge difference to countering the setbacks faced by so many during this crisis by investing to support pupils to recover and thrive in school and beyond.” June Felix, IG Group CEO and member of Teach First's Business Leaders' Council, said: “We are thrilled to be able to build on our partnership with Teach First and support them in their mission of providing a brilliant education for all. The IG Brighter Future Fund brings our culture of supporting the local communities in which we operate to life, and will support the long-term educational needs of children living through such an unsettling period.”

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