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Last Updated: Monday, 27 October, 2003, 12:32 GMT
Football club helps children learn
More than 80 pupils have completed the programme so far
A new centre hopes to use children's love of football to boost their learning.

The new Carlisle United Study Centre aims to raise the computer, numeracy and literacy skills of pupils aged between nine to 14.

It will give them the chance to take part in activities like digital video editing and building robots.

More than 80 pupils have already completed the programme and another 160 are halfway through it.

John Atkinson, headteacher of Thomlinson Junior School, said it had been a valuable resource for his pupils.

He said: "The Carlisle United Study Centre 'Playing for Success' project is one of the most worthwhile initiatives in which we have been involved.

Community role

"The children were enthused by their visits to Carlisle United and the programme improved both their performance in key academic areas and their confidence and commitment.

"The staff at the study centre and the football club itself should be congratulated on supporting the community's children in such a concrete and worthwhile way."

The centre is funded by Cumbria County Council, the Football Foundation and the Department for Education and Skills.

It is part of a national project to encourage young people to take part in voluntary learning activities outside school hours.

Carlisle United spokesman Phil Holmes said: "Carlisle United Football Club are delighted that the Study Centre initiative has been so successful to date.

"The football club has a role to play in the community, not only on the pitch but also off it, and are happy that our involvement in this scheme is directly benefiting the children attending the centre."

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