The new Stoke Education Welfare Centre (SETC) will be open for students to visit and teach.
It will be the first of its kind in the UK and will be managed by a new company called Stoke Education, which is run by Stoke University’s Education Policy and Research Unit (EPRU).
It will also have an operating budget of $2.3 million.
The centre will provide a range of services to children from early childhood to adult literacy, social, emotional and health care, and work placement.
“We want to make sure that our kids are educated and have access to quality educational opportunities and we’re going to be really passionate about that,” said Stoke Education CEO Simon Haggarty.
“Stoke is a centre for education, it’s a centre of learning, and we’ve got this in the centre of the city, so it’s really exciting to be able to share that with them and support them and give them an education.”
The SETC will also be home to the Stoke Children’s Health Centre, which was established in 2014 and operates as a community health and social care facility.
“The children and young people at Stoke Childrens Hospital have the most challenging circumstances in life, and the centre is really going to provide a place for them to feel comfortable and supported,” said Haggarth.
“That’s really important for our young people, and it’s something we really want to be very proud of.”
In addition to the centres, the Stoke Education Centre will have a large children’s playground, a fitness and social centre, and a theatre.
The Stoke Education centre will also offer children aged four to 18 an opportunity to take part in an internship or job placement, which will be offered in partnership with the Children’s Learning Centre.
“They’ll get a real education and be part of a community, which we really believe in,” said Tim Wood, a Stoke Education partner.
“Kids come into Stoke every day, and they can be the best part of the experience.”
The new centre is being designed to offer “access to quality education, which includes a wide range of enrichment activities,” said a press release from Stoke Education.
“This is a real opportunity for Stoke to continue to lead the way in providing quality education to our young population.”
The announcement was met with excitement among Stoke students.
“I was really excited that we’re able to make a difference and give kids the opportunity to learn at home, but I’m really excited for what this will mean for my community, especially my students,” said one student.
“There’s not a lot of opportunities in our community for them, so this is really important,” said another.
“Hopefully this will help to open doors for more opportunities,” said the third student.