Mentor Sayeeda works with Batley Girls

Mentor Sayeeda works with Batley Girls

BARONESS Sayeeda Warsi is a former cabinet minister who grew up as the daughter of a Dewsbury bus driver.

So there was probably nobody better to give a final push to pupils at Batley Girls’ High who have completed a mentoring programme.

The Tory peer was at the Windmill Lane school last Friday to mark the end of a project run by charity Mosaic.

Twenty youngsters aged 13 and 14 have been mentored by four captains of industry.

Mosaic was founded by Prince Charles with the aim of raising aspirations among children in deprived areas. The mentors included Mendip Sahota, the chief executive of Baroness Warsi’s own charity.

She has a foundation which promotes social mobility and religious freedom while aiming to tackle gender inequality.

The other mentors included former Batley School of Art student Natasha McCreesh.

She is now a businesswoman who is also a trustee of mental health charity Hoop Creative Arts.

Another mentor was former Kirklees College lecturer Adriane Marriott-Mills, who is a governor at Diamond Wood Community Academy in Ravensthorpe.

Baroness Warsi, who went to Birkdale High in Dewsbury, was the first Muslim woman in cabinet.

She is now pro-vice chancellor of the University of Bolton and a visiting professor at St Mary’s University in Twickenham.

Baroness Warsi said: “It’s clear to me the impact of Mosaic’s mentoring on these young women has been hugely positive.

“It’s important they are given the encouragement and guidance they need to achieve great things as they grow older, regardless of gender, ethnicity or background.

“The mentors gave excellent advice drawn from their successful careers but also demonstrated just what’s possible in life through hard-work and perseverance.”

Iffat Ahmed, pathways and progression coordinator at the school, said this was the first time they had worked with Mosaic.

She added: “The confidence of the pupils involved has significantly improved as a result of the programme. And their knowledge of career choices has increased considerably due to the inspiration and professionalism of the mentors.”

• There is a parents’ forum meeting at the school on Wednesday May 18 at 10.30am.

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