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Ambitious teen aims to inspire as school governor

A Birstall teenager, says “age should not be a barrier to achieving your ambitions” after becoming a school governor at the age of 18.

Rishi Lad has taken up the post at Highcliffe Primary School, which he used to attend.

Picture: Rishi Lad

As well as working a day job in wealth management, he also sits on the board of directors for a creative company called Phizzical Productions, where he oversees their finance.

“I want to inspire people of my generation and show them that you can have these higher level roles, age doesn’t matter,” he told Pukaar.

“People need to realise that they can bring a unique set of skills to the table just by being younger. If you come from the outside you are able to think outside the box. Younger generations tend to see trends and are able to adapt,” he went on to explain.

“A lot of the time, people in companies just look for age but actually it’s also important to look for the different generations – people who see things differently and can come up with new ideas.”

A survey in 2019 by the National Governance Association found that the average age of governors in the UK was 55. However, Rishi believes that diversity of age should be encouraged and that younger people can be more in touch with students in the education system.

“The children can really relate to me,” said the now 19-year-old.

“I always felt when I was back at school that there was a lack of eduction in the finance area. There’s nothing wrong with teaching children the generics right from a young age. I feel that the gap between the wealthy and the poor is widening because of that lack of education in finance.”

Speaking of his experience of being a school governor, he said: “I try not to disclose my age because I’m aware that sometimes people may look and think ‘what does he know – why should we have a conversation with him’, but it’s been quite good. A lot of people have respected my views and appreciated my point of view.”

Rishi uses his skills in finance to advise the board at Phizzical Productions – a Leicester based company, which is running UK Asian Film Festival Leicester between May 9-12.

“When I was speaking to the CEO of Phizzical Productions he was quite amazed about my age and how mature I was and what I could bring to the board – advising them on finance and bringing new ideas,” he said.

“On the board there are people who are very mature and have got plenty of experience and then you’ve got the younger generation who can give a different input and see things from a different perspective.

“I just want to put my story and my experience out there to show that young people can make a difference and grasp these roles. I want them to pursue the roles they want with unwavering confidence.”

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