Twinning Projects:

The West Somerset Opportunity Area has developed and implemented twinning projects across the Mendip, Weymouth & Portland areas together with schools within Somerset.

Below are the key points for each project:

Priority 1: Early Years, has developed and implemented two projects to support the Mendip and Weymouth & Portland areas.

Weymouth and Portland is a district that shares a similar socio-economic profile and attainment level to West Somerset with low early years results. The Priority for the twinning project is to improve outcomes in speech, language, communication and maths using the lessons learned from the Priority 1 (Early Years) element of the West Somerset Opportunity.

Priority for the Mendip area is to improve outcomes in speech, language and communication. Again, using the lessons learned from the Priority 1 (Early Years) and the success of bringing I CAN to roll out ‘Early Talk’ within early years settings and reception classes to improve outcome for children in speech and language.

Priority 2: Curriculum, has developed and implemented the following project supporting schools within Somerset

The OA wide Trauma Informed Schools project has been extremely well received by delegates. The project aims to ensure that all schools participating in the project are supported to become trauma informed and mentally healthy places for all, working together to develop practice across the area.  In addition to the West Somerset schools being engaged a further 8 Somerset schools are also now involved in the project.

Priority 4 CEIAG, has developed and implemented the following three twinning projects supporting the Mendip Area.

Working with the SomersetWorks HUBs based in Frome and Glastonbury supporting young people who are NEET or at high risk of becoming NEET, aged 15-18. This has allowed the participants to attend and receive individual bespoke support from the HUB manager and the team.  All attendees receive support to complete an individual skills assessment, creation of a bespoke action plan, support in developing employment skills and other personal skills, support to apply for a range of provision such as traineeships.

The Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme (DofE) programme is delivered collaboratively one day a week for a cohort of young people identified by SomersetWorks, or other agencies, who are at risk of becoming NEET. The programme of activities are aimed at building resilience, confidence and skills for future engagement.

The online Catch up College service provides bespoke 1:1 tutorial support for those young people from age 16 who need to achieve or upgrade their current levels of literacy / numeracy.  The programme links closely with the SomersetWorks NEET re-engagement project