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Kent Children's University Team


Meet the KCU team


Sean Carter - Strategic Projects and Partnership Manager

Sean has spent the last 21 years working in local government in England, the last 14 of which have been with Kent County Council.  His roles have included Community Development Worker, European Project Manager, External Funding Officer, Extended Services Development Manager and was then responsible for Extended Services in Kent that has also included strategically leading on the Kent Healthy Schools Programme and Kent Children's University.

Sean is currently the Strategic Projects and Partnership Manager within the Education and Young People's directorate, with a particular focus on developing projects and partnerships that support the authority's strategic priorities for education and young people.  Prior to his work in local government Sean worked in the private sector, and also undertook research and established a charitable organisation looking to match disabled people with housing that had been adapted or was suitable for their needs.



Emma Jenkins - Manager of Kent Children's University

As a qualified infant teacher, Emma taught in Kent schools for over ten years.  During her teaching career Emma developed tools for demonstrating the impact of extra-curricular activities on pupils' attainment and achievement as well as focusing on the impact of strong parental engagement.

Emma was seconded to Kent County Council, as part of the Extended Services central team in 2007, where the role saw her support schools and organisations across the county to provide high quality extra-curricular provision.

Now, Emma's role as Manager of Kent Children's University sees her work with schools, businesses, organisations and charities to enhance the quality of their out of school hours' (co-curricular) provision for young people.   There is a strong focus around using Children's University opportunities and experience to raise Aspirations with a view to improve Attitudes to learning; thus leading to greater Attendance, higher Attainment and life-long Achievement (The 5As, as Emma calls them).  Developing skills for life and employment are also vital elements of the Children's University experience.



Not forgetting support from...


Charlotte Adams - Business and Customer Support Assistant (Skills and Employability)

Charlotte began her career working as a Legal Secretary in Commercial Property for a Partner of a Solicitors' firm in Maidstone. Dealing with leases, contracts and high volumes of dictations and correspondence provided Charlotte with a good foundation of skills which she has been able to apply and develop throughout her work.

Charlotte joined Kent County Council in 2009 as a Project Support Assistant for the Extended Services department where she provided support on the Extended Schools, Healthy Schools, and Healthy Early Years Pilot projects.

Charlotte has been part of the Skills and Employability Service since 2012 and her role is within the Business Support Team. She provides administrative support to the functioning of the office, Kent Children's University, iProcurement and the organisation of meetings, conferences and events. 



Louis Harris - Digital Services Apprentice (Skills and Employability)

Louis is the social media apprentice for the Skills and Employability team. He is always looking for new and innovative ways to promote the service across the numerous channels he runs. During his time at Kent County Council he has developed a skill set that has allowed him to contribute to the running of several projects and digital platforms, including KCU-specific work.

As well as social media, Louis helped develop the new Apprenticeship website ApprenticeKent and enjoys helping other young people like himself find opportunities using the website. 



Karen Laponder - Employability Programmes Officer (Skills and Employability)

Having worked on both the Future Jobs Fund and the Kent Employment Programme, she has been an integral part of the teams that have helped to secure nearly 2000 jobs and apprenticeships for young people in Kent. Having worked in the welfare to work arena for many years, Karen has built good working relationships with JCP, local employers and the voluntary sector that have been critical to the successful outcomes of these projects. She has a good understanding of the barriers young people face in entering the workplace and is able to offer solutions that remove these barriers and support the transition into employment.

Karen is supporting KCU with its development of working with businesses and organisations.