BWFC in IB and Fronesis Learning link

The International Baccalaureate (IB) announces partnership with Bolton Wanderers and Fronesis Learning to offer top international education to aspiring young athletes

The IB and Fronesis Learning have signed an agreement to adopt the IB Career-related Certificate (IBCC) in its partner schools in the UK. This will see the IBCC offered to young football players at the Bolton Wanderers Academy and aspiring footballers at the BWFC Institute of Sport.  

In the near future the IBCC will also be offered in two free schools that Bolton Wanderers has applied to operate in the UK. The free schools will be working with local communities to engage youth through an interest in sport, with a particular focus on young people not currently in education, employment or training.

The IBCC is a unique programme of education incorporating the vision and principles of the IB within a flexible learning framework, tailored by each school to meet the needs of students, the local community and the world beyond.

Fronesis Learning was founded in 2012 to serve as a parent organization to engage both football clubs and community organizations. Its comprehensive portfolio of educational training programmes, combined with its recognised international qualifications and elite sports coaching, benefit both the ‘Elite Professional Athlete’ as well as the ‘Individual Learner’. Fronesis is made up of representatives from within the world of sport - from professional sportspeople to senior figures.  

The IB will work closely with Fronesis Learning to provide support for the implementation and delivery of the IBCC in partner schools, and advise on tailoring the educational framework to ensure it meets the needs of the young adults enrolled in the programme. Alongside their specialized vocational and academic courses, students can continue to study mathematics and English and will be encouraged to start or continue studies in a second language. They will also undertake service learning in the community as well as completing a reflective project, based on an ethical issue relating to their studies.

The British Ambassador to the Netherlands, Mr Paul Arkwright, was present to mark the occasion alongside Phil Gartside, chairman of Bolton Wanderers and Fronesis Learning and, from the IB, Director General Jeff Beard with Regional Director Adrian Kearney.

Jeff Beard, director general of the IB said: “The IB is all about creating a more diverse, inclusive community across all of its programmes. This partnership of our IBCC programme with Fronesis Learning provides an important bridge for those students seeking a sports-related learning pathway.” 

Phil Gartside said: “At Bolton Wanderers we believe that the attributes required to be a professional sportsperson - discipline, focus and determination - provide an ideal framework for the delivery of education. These skills are transferable in any walk of life and therefore serve as a good foundation for the delivery of our courses. We are delighted to enter into this exciting partnership and build on the success of the Institute of Sport, and this venture with the IB allows us to do that.”

Adrian Kearney, IB regional director for Africa, Europe and Middle East: “This partnership with Fronesis Learning directly supports our central objective to increase access to an IB education regardless of personal circumstances. The IBCC bridges the gap between academic and career-related programmes and is an ideal option for aspiring young athletes - providing access to a top international education while they pursue their sporting ambitions. This is yet another example of how the innovative IBCC is influencing the development of an IB education at alternative places of learning such as university, technical colleges and sports academies.”  

The British Ambassador to the Netherlands Mr Paul Arkwright: "I applaud this initiative which will not only allow young professional footballers to gain a well-rounded international education but also use a passion for sport to reach, re-engage and empower young people with the education and skills they need to succeed in life."
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