Kirklees, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

  • City population: 
  • GDP – city: 
    More than USD 25,000
  • Average number of years of schooling: 

Diverse and vibrant communities

Home to diverse and vibrant communities with strong identities and a rich cultural heritage that centres on textiles and music, Kirklees is known for its high-quality education provision and enduring strengths in advanced manufacturing and engineering. 

Vision and Strategy

We believe in lifelong learning: learning at every stage and every age. Our 2030 Vision adopts a place-based approach, enabling everyone to build the skills, knowledge and confidence to take part in shaping the places where they live, work and play. We focus on early years and adult and community learning, quality and inclusive education, and vulnerable children. Our learning approach supports the Kirklees Futures Learning Strategy (2021-2030), which caters for children from early years education to school leavers, and our Employment & Skills Plan (2021-2024), which helps school children transition to post-16 education and work. GNLC peer learning will contribute to improving our projects and achieving our goals. 

Policies, Plan and Implementation

Sustainability and health

  • Kirklees declared a climate emergency in 2019 and is committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2038, placing sustainability is at the heart of its thinking. The health and well-being of young people is the core theme of the city’s Local Cultural Education Partnership, and the Kirklees Futures Learning Strategy commits its partner network to supporting healthy lifestyles that can be maintained throughout childhood and adulthood.  

Equity and inclusion

  • Tackling inequalities is central to the Council’s ambition for Kirklees.  An Inclusion Commission ensures that this approach is embedded in all of the activities carried out by the city and its partners. Learning provision is delivered in different venues and across different communities, ensuring that formal and informal lifelong learning opportunities are available to all and supported through effective signposting.  

Decent work and entrepreneurship

  • Enterprise and entrepreneurial culture are embedded within the school curriculum. Kirklees has high-quality employment and skills offerings, and works to engage residents from disadvantaged groups and reconnect them with the labour market. As the local economy grows and evolves, the city is committed to ensuring that local people can take advantage of these opportunities, regardless of their background.  

Good practices

Democracy Pioneers

  • This initiative works to widen participation in everyday democracy and foster democracy at the local level for the next generation. The Democracy-Friendly Schools programme is open to all schools and helps young people to learn about and be an active part of local democracy and civic life. Shaped by People, a shared strategy for encouraging active citizenship, enables citizens to discuss their neighbourhoods, and identify and act on their own local priorities using a dedicated Place Standard tool. 

Year of Music 2023

  • A place-based initiative that uses music as a tool to address issues, tackle inequalities and raise aspirations among individuals and communities. The initiative furthermore builds confidence and skillsets within organizations (voluntary and community sector, venues, festivals, education and health providers), equipping them to work with music.  

Breaking Barriers

  • A collective of seven youth-led initiatives working with Kirklees Council and partners to redress historical injustices and inequalities. The programme aims to improve outcomes for young Black people, and to help public agencies to be fair and inclusive service providers. The programme was developed through consultation activities with local young people to identify their needs and key areas in need of change. 

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