A ST Ives secondary school is aiming to become the first in the district to achieve specialist status in humanities. The title would mean an extra \u00A31million funding for St Ivo School over the next five years, to be invested in reducing class sizes and improving literacy skills across the whole curriculum. In its bid to become a specialist college, the school must raise \u00A350,000 in sponsorship to support its application. Governors and staff will launch a fundraising drive in the town next week to encourage local businesses to support the move and their potential future employees. Humanities were chosen as the area of expertise after the department came out top in a selection process last term, with proposals to use the specialist status to raise achievement across all subjects, not just their own. Headteacher Howard Gilbert said: "As a humanities college, St Ivo will foster an understanding of human values and attitudes, past and present, and how society is organised, developed and changed. "In the coming weeks we will hope to persuade potential donors that their support will make a difference, not only to the life chances of the students, but to the success of local business." INFORMATION: The launch event for St Ivo's specialist status takes place at the Dolphin Hotel in St Ives next Wednesday (May 24) at 6.30pm. Businesses interested in sponsoring the school can call 01480 375401.