Oliver recruits celebrity teachers


Jamie Oliver with a team of inspirational teachers

Jamie Oliver has recruited a team of inspirational teachers including Lord Winston, David Starkey and Alastair Campbell to turn around the lives of teens who struggled with school.

Other figures such as Rolf Harris, Simon Callow and Daley Thompson are taking part in the TV experiment which will form a Channel 4 documentary series next year.

Jamie’s Dream School aims to encourage 20 teenagers who have had difficulties at school to give education a second chance.

Starkey will teach history, Lord Winston is to handle science and Campbell will give politics classes.

Shakespearean actor Callow is to be the drama teacher, Soul II Soul chart star Jazzie B will look after music, Harris will run the art classes and Olympic gold medal-winning decathlete Daley Thompson will teach sport.

Oliver had difficulties of his own at school, partly due to his dyslexia, and left at 16 with two GCSEs.

But the chef – who has already campaigned for healthy eating and improved school dinners – wants to see if others like him can succeed if they have the right environment.

He advertised in the summer to find teens who had failed to thrive in school. During the seven-part series viewers will see if he can persuade the youths, from 16 to 18, to try again with their education.

Other experts lending their weight to the project include Cherie Blair, former poet laureate Andrew Motion, rapper Tinchy Stryder, round-the-world sailor turned environmental campaigner Ellen Macarthur, photographer Rankin and former England cricket captain Michael Vaughan.

The series will examine why many young people are not engaged by education and what can be done.

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