5th January 2016

The entrepreneur, academy sponsor and philanthropist Jack Petchey was knighted for services to young people in East London and Essex in the New Year Honours.

There were also knighthoods for Professor Paul Curran, vice-chancellor of City University in London and for Dr David Collins, first Further Education Commissioner.

Susan Jowett, chief executive of the Spencer Academies Trust was made a Dame and Steve Lancashire, founder of the primary school academy sponsor REAch2, also received a knighthood.

Clive Cowdery received a knighthood for services to children and social mobility. Mr Cowdery founded the Resolution Foundation in 2005 and personally contributed £20m to the organisation.

Also featured is Glenys Stacey, the out-going head of the exams watchdog, Ofqual, made a dame for services to education.

Many other honours were awarded to heads and teachers.

The Jack Petchey Foundation has sponsored an academy in Hackney since 2006 and helps 500,000 young people every year, with the aim of raising aspirations by rewarding their achievements and encouraging them to take pride in what they have done.

Sir Jack was born into a working class family in London's East End in 1925 and left school with no qualifications when he was 13. He set up a taxi business after leaving the navy and went on to develop a number of business interests and become a multi-millionaire.

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