Education charity SHINE set for Leeds move

London education charity SHINE is moving to the North of England to provide help where it believes need is the greatest.

From August, SHINE will become the only specialist funder of education to be based and focused specifically on the North of England. It will work to improve outcomes in two key phases: early years and the first few years of secondary school.

Cameron Ogden, Chairman of SHINE, said: “The charity expects to invest at least £1 million per year in areas of deprivation across the North East, North West and Yorkshire and Humber regions.”

The charity, which was founded in 1999 by a group of committed philanthropists to help tackle educational inequality and backed by Sir Alex Ferguson, will be based in Leeds, one of the key centres of the Northern Powerhouse.

Lord Jim O’Neill, a founding member of SHINE who is on the Northern Powerhouse Partnership, is re-joining the board of SHINE to help the charity realise its vision in the North.

“I am delighted to be coming back to work with SHINE in its efforts to help improve the educational outcomes for the most disadvantaged so that they can reach their potential. The decision to relocate its base and efforts to Leeds and play a key role in a major challenge in the Northern Powerhouse is really important, and for me, exciting,” said Lord O’Neill.

Commenting on Lord O’Neill re-joining the SHINE board and SHINE’s refocus on the North, Councillor Judith Blake, Leader of Leeds City Council, said: “It is fantastic that Lord O’Neill is re-joining the SHINE team. He will be able to use his expertise to help improve the educational prospects of young people in Leeds and across the North. Tackling educational inequalities is a key priority for us in Leeds through our Child Friendly Leeds work and SHINE’s re-focus on the North will complement that and help raise attainment among low income households.”

Sir Peter Lampl, founder and chairman of the Sutton Trust and chairman of the Education Endowment Foundation, said: “I’ve been a keen follower of SHINE’s work and was glad to offer my advice to Mark Heffernan and Jim O’Neill when they launched SHINE 17 years ago.

In that time there has been some improvement in school results, particularly in London. However, it’s become clear that there are stark education gaps between the South and North of England. Your life chances are not only dependent on your family circumstances but also where you live. That’s why I am so positive about SHINE’s move to the North.”

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