In my role as the Secretary of State for Education, and also as the Member of Parliament for Stratford-on-Avon, the neighbouring constituency to Warwick, where ‘Future Fwd’ is being hosted, I welcome this initiative and wholeheartedly support the principle on which it is based – enabling the next generation; our next generation.
This is a timely reminder of how important it is to recognise how the future of work is evolving and how technology will have an increasing impact on our lives, particularly in the world of education, as demonstrated by the themes that underpin this event; curriculum and learning, arts and culture, entrepreneurship and enterprise, tech and gaming and business and industry. Giving our young people the tools they need to fully prepare them for the world of work, but also to expose them to the increasing varied opportunities available is essential, and something I am personally very excited about. I know that music in education is also something close to all your hearts. It is vital that children know how to sing, play instruments together and enjoy all forms of music. These are the richer parts of our curriculum that complete the picture of a child’s education. This country has a proud heritage in music and sport, and this enriches our national identity and we need to pass this heritage down to our children. I am sorry that I will not be at the event itself, due to pressures on my diary, but I am keen to hear of the ideas and proposals that this conference will undoubtedly generate. Finally, may I pay tribute to Richard Nicholson and his team – I hope this event will become a regular feature in the national calendar.