Birmingham Local Authority partners with FlashAcademy® to support Syrian refugees resettled in the Midlands

FlashAcademy® has been awarded a breakthrough grant with Birmingham Local Authority, to support Syrian refugee families resettled in the region.

The grant will be made available to around 70 schools in the region, providing them with access to the award-winning FlashAcademy® digital learning platform, to help them support Syrian pupils with their education needs.

At this challenging time, vulnerable groups of migrant pupils are often being disadvantaged as their learning slips behind due to a lack of general English proficiency.

Refugee children are more likely to have had disrupted schooling, leading to less-developed reading skills and curriculum vocabulary. For that reason, FlashAcademy® provides curriculum lessons to strengthen reading, listening, and writing skills, helping refugee children learn vocabulary from Maths, English, Science, DT, History, etc. with Arabic and English translation.

Cllr John Cotton, Cabinet Member for Social Inclusion, Community Safety and Equalities, congratulated FlashAcademy® as well as community schemes The Bike Project and Refugee Alliance:

“I am pleased to see these innovative schemes benefit from grants which in turn will benefit refugee families who arrive in Birmingham through the Syrian Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme.”

“Learning to ride a bike and being able to travel to school or work, along with being able to access learning or to understand issues children may face when growing up are universal experiences, but to newly arrived families being able to do these things helps them settle into their neighbourhood – and their new lives.”

Veejay Lingiah, CEO of FlashAcademy®, was delighted to have the support from Birmingham Local Authority:

“We’re really pleased to be in a position where we can continue to support refugee children in these strange and unsettling times. Providing English language learning on all devices, whether a smartphone, tablet or laptop, can have a huge impact for these children, especially in the current climate.

“We want to be as proactive as possible and are talking with other Local Authorities to see where similar support can be provided.”

A number of schools have already taken up this new financial support package for their Syrian pupils, including Storywood School, King Edward VI Balaam Wood, and Stockland Green school.  The app is particularly powerful for schools seeking to support any pupil with EAL at this time.

“We already see how well families use FlashAcademy® to support learning. FlashAcademy® will certainly form a central part of our strategy of how we continue the learning process, albeit in a virtual way.” – Claire Evans, Deputy Head, Anderton Park Primary

In addition to supporting Syrian school pupils being resettled in the region, a special version of FlashAcademy® is also being developed for Syrian adults.  This new app will provide employment-related English, to help career development opportunities.

Working with Spring Housing and Refugee Action in Birmingham, this will offer content tailored to Birmingham including Birmingham’s history and dialect lessons to help them feel more comfortable and excited to live in their new city. It will also include useful, practical information and teach vocabulary relating to health, financial, and community services.

FlashAcademy® HQ urges any schools in Birmingham supporting Syrian pupils to reach out and see how the team can provide funding support via this new grant. For more information, please contact the Midlands Education Director, Matt Williams: matt@flashacademy.com or 07463 049363.

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