Peter Jones Enterprise Academy
|Peter Jones Enterprise Academy|
|Motto||'Bringing the boardroom to the classroom'|
The Peter Jones Enterprise Academy, formerly known as the National Enterprise Academy, is an educational establishment offering programs at a number of UK colleges. The Academy was founded by Peter Jones in 2008; its 'Pathfinder' course began in January 2009 in Buckinghamshire with 28 students. The academy was set up with the goal of "bringing the boardroom into the classroom", making learning about business a more practical experience.
During the courses students are taught about business by actual business people. During the Pathfinder course, Peter Jones is the founder but does not assist with the day-to-day running and is only present at the graduation ceremony.
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The Manchester campus is situated just outside the city centre, and is connected with The Manchester College, whilst the Amersham campus is situated in Buckinghamshire and connected with Amersham and Wycombe College.
There are two courses on offer to students, either the level 2 or level 3 (which are two-year or one-year courses respectively); there is also a fast-track course where people can join the level 2 course for a 6-month period.
It was speculated[who?] in June 2011 that the Academy had mismanaged £9 million of taxpayers' money after CEO Tom Bewick, who had quit after only a week in the position, claimed the Academy was missing fundamental targets and in serious financial difficulties as a result of financial mismanagement by Jones and his fellow trustees. The report, and Bewick's letter of resignation, claimed that the spending of millions of pounds of public funds on the project was ‘hard to justify’ as it had ‘seriously under-performed’ in comparison with the amount of money invested in it. The report also claimed the Academy was in danger of running out of money and that only 260 students had graduated so far, just under 10% of the predicted total. An investigation by the Skills Funding Agency at the request of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills found no evidence to support the allegations about the use of public funds. Jones says that the Academy was audited by Grant Thornton and by outside investigators and no wrongdoing was found.
Earlier in 2011, it was reported that Manchester College had discontinued its connection with the Academy, because of low enrolment, and doubts about the overall financial stability of the Academy.
- "Centres of excellence, courses for enterprise". Peter Jones Enterprise Academy. Retrieved 29 February 2012.
- Delgado, Martin (19 June 2011). "Dragons' Den star's tycoon academy in £9m row over 'mismanagement' of taxpayers' money". Mail on Sunday. Retrieved 29 February 2012.
- Gosden, Emily (19 June 2011). "Dragons' Den star Peter Jones hits back in row with former colleague". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved February 23, 2012.
- Delgado, Martin (9 July 2011). "Dragon's Den star's charity sets up in new college after being dumped by old partners". Mail on Sunday. Retrieved 10 July 2012.
- "Peter Jones’s NEA denies new report of money troubles". Education Investor. HealthInvestor Ltd. 4 July 2011. Retrieved 29 February 2012.
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