Parents and Students
Intent & Rationale
Our vision for careers is to ensure that our students are provided with access to a range of opportunities to make informed choices about the next steps in their education.
Our aim is to support our students to develop the skills, understanding and habits that will make them successful both in their studies and in the ever-changing world of work, so that they will be able to continue learning beyond school as their careers progress.
Implementing Our Curriculum
All staff have a role to play in supporting our students with their career planning; as tutors, class teachers or Head of Year. Students have the opportunity to hear about a range of careers in assemblies, from visiting speakers (event based or within subjects), while on trips or as part of our programme of Options and Careers events, as well as in their PSHE lessons. Opportunities, both face-to-face and virtual are regularly shared with students.
In the curriculum
We provide a structured programme of activities to inform, inspire and motivate our students towards their future careers. Our careers programme takes place through the curriculum, PSHE lessons, assemblies and in a range of events throughout the school. There is a link to our planned Careers Programme for the year at the bottom of the page.
We do not wait until students are reaching their final years with us to foster career thinking. The curriculum evolves to ensure students have the best possible foundation for their future. Students learn about career opportunities within every curriculum subject area and recognise the transferable skills that each provides. Initially, careers advice is broad so that each student is encouraged to explore different interests and discover new strengths. Every subject taught is specialised but includes wider benefits that will develop overall employability skills, from public speaking and confidence in Drama to teamwork and strategy in PE. All students use career planning tools during their time with us, they focus on their goals and achievements, designed to help them become ‘life-ready’, beyond their time in education.
In addition to the National Curriculum subjects, all students in Years 7 and 8 have an excellent grounding in a wide range of work related skills developed through our fortnightly timetabled STEAM sessions. These develop their technology skills and also raise their awareness of careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics.
Personal Development (PSHE)
Weekly PSHE lessons are timetabled for all students (except for Year 13 where they take place once a fortnight). These prepare our students for their lives beyond school and cover a wide range of different topics, including career planning. Our advice becomes more tailored to each student the further they progress through school. Insight is given into career choices, routes to specific jobs of interest, aspects of employment, succeeding at interview, CV writing and more.
Useful Resources for Parents
Some parents tell us that they are uncertain as to how to support their children with their careers related decisions. The videos and information which follows may give you a starting point for your conversations.
Videos - https://www.talkingfutures.org.uk/
This document was written by the CIPR (Chartered Institute of Public Relations) and contains useful information regarding options after both GCSEs and Sixth Form:
This document was written for National Careers Week, it contains useful information regarding options after both GCSEs and Sixth Form:
This document provides information about the wide range of options open to students after their GCSE courses, including A levels, Apprenticeships and T-levels.
This website provides a range of information which will be of use to students who are investigating university courses:
The following websites are also very useful for students when choosing subjects and/or universities:
Sacu - particularly look at the Labour Market information and A Level match tool sections
The National Careers Website provides a useful summary and links and a wide range of information to support careers choices including the key idea that students do not need to know where they are going to “get going”. The implication being that to get ahead they need to develop transferable skills for life. Information about the range of opportunities available post-16 is accessible from here.
The booklet linked below was shared with parents who attended the Year 10 Transition Evening and includes useful information for parents about our Careers programme for students in Key Stage 4.
All students in KS4 have a careers interview with our independent advisor prior to choosing their A levels. Students in Key Stage 5 can also have appointments should they wish. Our advisor is available for all students to talk to at lunchtime on a drop-in basis.
Other Useful Websites
Words for Work
For help on knowing how to look and apply for jobs, including how to write a curriculum vitae (CV), an elevator speech or dealing with tricky interview questions the following website might be helpful
There are many websites available which provide information about careers. Some are directly related to particular industries and others are less specific, however some of the following may be of use.
To find out more about what career areas may suit - complete this test and then research the options that are shared.
The following websites include all areas and can often be searched by subject and/or interest area. Some also include information about pay and promotion prospects.
- National Careers Service
- Kent University Careers and Employability Information
- Total Jobs
There are also many subject based or profession based websites that have careers sections, e.g.
Looking for a Career in the Creative Industry, then this could be the website for you
Many students are interested in medical careers, but it is worth remembering that the Health Service requires a wide range of other professional staff as well as doctors. These websites give you information about some of these other roles.
There are many websites which promote independent activities to support career choices. It is also worth looking out for the many competitions that run in school. Participation in these will develop skills that employers will be looking for.
The following organisations run activities to support STEM careers
The University of Birmingham has a scheme called Routes to the Professions which provides support for students considering courses in Medicine, Dentistry, Law, Accounting & Finance and Engineering.
In addition they also run the A2B Scheme which provides additional support to students who meet their criteria.
Labour Market Information
Nationally it is known that there is a significant mismatch between the careers that young people wish to pursue and the opportunities available. Labour Market Information (LMI) can be used to help students and parents understand the salaries and promotion opportunities for different jobs, as well as the volume and location of vacancies in different sectors of the job market. You may find it helpful to use the Labour Market Information which can be investigated using 'Careerometer interactive' from the website below.
Birmingham Education Partnership (BEP), in conjunction with the Careers & Enterprise Company, has produced a Labour Market Information guide for teachers, young people and parents/carers called My Way Into The World of Work. This useful guide provides information about the growth areas (listed below) in Birmingham and the West Midlands. There are links to a range of videos and activities about these areas.
- Creative and Cultural
- Advanced Manufacturing – Food & Drink
- Business, Professional and Financial Services
- Data-Driven Health and Life Sciences
- Low Carbon and Energy Technology
- Logistics & Transport
- Public Sector including Education
- Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering
- Health and Social Care