One of the most inspirational leaders of his generation, award winning speaker, author and former Long Eaton headteacher, Richard Gerver will headline this year’s Chesterfield and North Derbyshire Skills and Employability Conference.

Passionate about collaboration between businesses and education, Richard will address the profound challenges that now face young people and educators at the conference, which is being held virtually on Wednesday 10 February from 8.30am – 10.00am.

He will bring his own experience of turning around a failing primary school 10 years ago, to highlight the need to radically transform the education system from its current highly prescriptive environment to one of flexibility, to enable more young people to get the jobs they aspire to.

Usually speaking on the international stage and working with governments and global corporations including Microsoft and Google, the pandemic has seen Richard locked down which gave the event organisers the opportunity to secure him for the virtual conference.

Richard said: “Schools are under immense pressure right now so I am delighted to have the opportunity to speak to educators and businesses in my home county of Derbyshire and bring my insight and experience to the conference which I hope will provide support and reassurance during this unprecedented time.”

He added: “It is fantastic to be in Chesterfield, albeit it virtually. I know the town well and am a regular visitor to Queen’s Park through my work with Derbyshire County Cricket Club.”

At the virtual conference Richard will also be joined in the speaker line-up by Rachel Quinn, Head of People and Skills at D2N2 LEP who leads on D2N2’s People and Skills strategy and programmes and policy relating to careers, employability, social inclusion and inclusive growth.

The event, which is free to attend, is organised by Chesterfield Borough Council, D2N2 Enterprise Advisor Network, CEC and Destination Chesterfield, and is open to businesses, schools and education providers in North Derbyshire.

Councillor Amanda Serjeant, Deputy Leader of Chesterfield Borough Council, said: “It’s vital that young people and businesses can access all the information they need to plan for their future, and the Employability and Skills Conference is always an important source of information for them. We are delighted to be joined by Richard as keynote speaker at this year’s event. His experiences in educational change make him the ideal speaker after the last year, I look forward to hearing his insights and I’m sure he will be a real hit with other attendees.”

To secure your place at the Chesterfield and North Derbyshire Employability and Skills Conference, please visit https://www.chesterfield.co.uk/events/chesterfield-north-derbyshire-employability-skills-conference/