Suffolk: Leading name could help to ‘raise the bar’

THE high-profile chairman of the Local Government Association has been invited to take up a key role with the pioneering Raising the Bar programme.

Suffolk County Council has asked Sir Merrick Cockell, also leader of Kensington and Chelsea Council, to become a member of the stakeholder group.

The group is overseeing an inquiry into addressing the concerns of Suffolk’s employers, who feel too many young people are not ready for the world of work when they leave school.

The initiative has been praised by Prime Minister David Cameron.

Sir Merrick has yet to confirm whether he will take up the offer, but council leader Mark Bee said it would be a boost for the county if he did.

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Mr Bee said: “Our Raising the Bar programme is about taking by the horns the issues of educational attainment, employability and aspiration in Suffolk and making positive changes.

“Building confidence and the right attitude in our children and young people and the entire county is vital so that we can all capitalise on the employment opportunities that are right on own doorsteps.”

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Mr Bee added: “Sir Merrick brings significant expertise and influence, so his direct involvement in our programme would be a boost for Suffolk.”

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