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Improving Opportunity Through Education

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What We Do

Oldham opportunity area (OA) launched in 2017 as one of 12 OAs by the government to break the link between a child’s background and where they get to in life. The OA brings together national and local government, education leaders, teachers, voluntary organisations and employers. Together, our goal is to ensure children and young people in the borough get the opportunities and support they need and deserve.

When the OA began, Oldham ranked 294th out of 324 districts in the social mobility index, and 34th most deprived out of 326 areas in England in the 2015 index of multiple deprivation. A quarter of state-funded secondary schools were rated ‘requires improvement’ or inadequate. Too many children and young people in Oldham were falling behind. Disadvantaged pupils often saw the least progress.

We have made progress towards our priorities but there’s still work to be done. Last year, Oldham OA extended until 2021, with another extension recently announced until 2022.  In years four and five of the programme, our priorities will remain the same with a focus on:

  • Improving outcomes in Early Years
  • Raising school standards and attainment through support for a new system-led school improvement model
  • Support for vulnerable learners; in particular, for their emotional health and mental wellbeing
  • Youth engagement, and progression pathways into HE and employment

Follow us on Twitter @OldhamOA for the latest news and updates.