was successfully added to your cart.


Case Studies

Plymouth 6th Form College Collaboration – Plym Student Union

By 21st January 2014 No Comments

Innovative sixth form student-led collaborations


Four Plymouth sixth form colleges: Coombe Deane, Hele’s, Plymstock and Ridgeway.


October 2012 – ongoing


Plymouth Volksfest, NCB Radio, Clockwork Audio Systems, Devonport Guildhall, Plymouth Trophy Man, South West Media Group, TYMSP, Rhythm City and Beat Breakers, Social Enterprise Focus, New Wave, Plymouth Chamber of Commerce, Owen Jones

The challenge:

Create a rich and exciting platform that would widen and innovate their sixth form students’ access to opportunities and experiences.

The RIO solution:The first of its kind in the UK, the union (US) was created as a student led social enterprise, which focuses on both the academic concerns and the social side of student life across the four sixth forms. It is run by students; with support from RIO Schools Service facilitators.

US covers the width and breadth of a student’s life at Post 16, making sure that they are there for student concerns, queries, guidance and support but equally fun, fab times, discounts and offers!

  • US students met Shadow Business Secretary for the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills, Chuka Umunna
  • US students recognised at Social Enterprise City Festival awards ceremony in November 2013 when they won Most Effective Collaboration for their unique Student Union collaboration
  • US students organised and hosted a Rhythm of the Night music event, acting as a platform to engage with students and acting as a springboard for young artists in the city
  • Plym SU’s innovative collaboration made local media on several occasions
  • Presented to the Department for Busiss, Innovation and Skills (BIS)

Beth Egan, US Manager

“Being part of US has been an amazing opportunity for me to make real and meaningful change happen. Working with RIO has taught me so much about what is possible.”

Andrea Ayres, Assistant Principal and Head of Post 16 education at Hele’s School

“The Plym Student Union is a unique coming together of four schools through their student body. Teachers from neighbouring schools are used to collaborating, but it is even more important that students can work together to create exciting new opportunities which are relevant to them. The Union adds a new dimension to learning at each of the four Sixth Forms and we are really excited to see its impact as the young people from across this part of the city meet for educational and recreational purposes.”

Leave a Reply