CAREERS EDUCATION, INFORMATION, ADVICE AND
Useful WebsitesPolicy Statement on Access for Providers
Castle School believes one of its fundamental purposes is to support all students in learning about, preparing for and making informed decisions about the world of work and their own career pathways. All aspects of school life should play a part in developing students’ skills, knowledge, interests and personal qualities – all of which help lead to an appropriate career pathway. But we also believe that a structured programme of learning and opportunities are needed to help students do this successfully.
The main strands of our CEIAG programme are summarised below
- Taught Programme. All students in Years 7-13 follow our formal Lifeskills curriculum, in which CIEAG is one of the key themes. This programme will include encounters with employers.
- Work Experience. During Years 10/11, we aim for all students to take part in at least one formal work experience placement (usually during Year 10). In our Sixth Form, all students are able to include a formal work placement in their timetabled Study programme if they wish, and all students are encouraged to undertake at least one work-shadowing opportunity.
- Individual Guidance. We engage an independent Careers Advice company, Compass Careers, to provide individual advice for students at key decision points. A number of key school staff are also involved in providing 1:1 guidance for students. Students in Years 11 and 13 all receive at least one 1:1 session to help focus on their progression pathways.
- Careers Information Platform. Since Jan 2020, the school provides all students with an individual log-in to a national online careers platform – Unifrog. Parents/carers are also able to have a log-in. This provides access to up-to-date information and guidance on career areas, courses in further and higher education, and current local vacancies for training and apprenticeships.
- Careers Guidance Office. All students/parents have access to the Careers Guidance Office – which is staffed full-time by Mrs Melanie Price. This is a one-stop shop for all enquiries and requests for guidance.
- Drop-in Clinics for students and parents. Relevant careers staff are available without appointment at most parents evenings, and in Jan 2020 we introduced a weekly drop-in workshop for students.
- Careers newsletter. Throughout the school year, a careers update newsletter is circulated by e-mail – at least once a month, and often once a fortnight. This contains information on all available opportunities for information events, courses, competitions, run by local or national providers or organisations, plus all known current job or apprenticeship vacancies. This is also shared with all parents/carers.
- Employer and Provider Events. Each year we hold a ‘Beyond the Castle’ careers event, run a visit to a regional UCAS careers event, and hold networking breakfasts for post-16 students with employers. We have been part of the organising group for the Ambitions Careers Fair held across S Glos/Bristol (for students in Yrs 9-13) – but currently under review. Year 11 and have Year 13 have a formal programme of externally-led sessions by other Providers (see separate policy on Provider Access).
- Within all subject lessons. Awareness of skills, knowledge, careers pathways and role-modelling should be implicit and explicit in all subjects within a student’s timetable.
- STEM. Our students live in an area in which career opportunities in STEM areas are much higher than other areas of the country. Thus , in line with national guidance, Castle School has taken a strong role in promoting awareness of STEM opportunities, working closely with external agencies in order to do so. Many of our older students had a fortnightly STEM Careers lesson when they were in KS3, and during Year 9 all students take part in at least 1 day’s STEM immersion – while many students have taken up a wide variety of opportunities provided by local employers. We are particularly grateful to local employers such as Renishaw, Essilor, Airbus, Rolls Royce and Hydrock, who support us so well.
- Participation Activities for disadvantaged and SEND students We have recognised that some of our students find it harder to engage with some aspects of the above provision, and need additional help to consider ambitious career pathways. Our SEND team run a programme of individual and group tasters, familiarisation visits and wider experiences. In conjunction with our Enterprise Advisers, we have also begun developing a series of additional aspirational activities for some of our disadvantaged students in KS3.
- Support for Competitive HE routes
For students considering university courses with additional entry requirements – Medicine, Dentistry, Law, Veterinary Sci plus Oxford/Cambridge undergraduate degrees – we run an additional programme of support and information. This includes visits to national information events, face-to-face events in school, visits to Oxbridge colleges, mentoring by local professionals, interview training and mock interviews. We are particularly pleased that so many students who have taken this route themselves offer to come back and support future cohorts.
Our timetabled GEIAG Activities for 2021/22 are detailed in the table below;
SLT Lead : Mr Andy Bethell (Director of Development). Oversight of all aspects of CIEAG provision. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Work-Related Learning Manager : Mrs Melanie Price. Mrs Price works full-time in the Careers Guidance Office. Her role includes support for all Work Experience placements; production of careers newsletters; organisation of all careers interviews with careers advisor; liaison with external providers for talks, input into Lifeskills lessons; destination tracking ; 1:1 support for any mid-year leavers or students in danger of being NEET; available for drop-in enquries form all students/parents/carers. (email@example.com)
External Careers Advisor : Mrs Lucy Siggers (Compass Careers). Lucy is level-6 qualified Careers advisor.
Lifeskills Coordinator : Mrs Rebecca Maurice. Mrs Maurice oversees all aspects of the taught Lifeskills curriculum in Years 7-11. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Enterprise Coordinator : Ms Sally Larkin. Sally is employed by West of England Careers Hub, and is our link Enterprise Coordinator. She liaises with school regularly, provides additional training and guidance, but also monitors and helps to evaluates the school’s progress in CIEAG against the national Gatsby Benchmarks.
Enterprise Adviser : Ms Liz Rogers. Liz fulfils this voluntary role of being an external professional (with wide experience in HR and the IT industry) who supports us with delivery of priority areas of our CEIAG provision. In the past year she has produced a film within her own organisation, designed to de-mystify for students the different career roles within the IT industry, and is currently helping to design new engagement activities for younger disadvantaged students.
Sixth Form Student Support Workers : Mrs Sarah MacIsaac and Mr Russ Summers. These 2 colleagues work full-time in our Sixth Form supporting students, and their role includes group and individual activities to support study, personal development and CEIAG. (email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org)
ASDAN Coordinator : Mrs Dianne Lloyd. The ASDAN Certificate of Personal Effectiveness is part of the programme run by our SEND Dept to help students prepare for future pathways, and is tailored to the needs of individual students – with strong emphasis on ‘next steps’ after Year 11. (email@example.com)
The 8 Gatsby Benchmarks are a framework for good career guidance, developed to support schools in providing the best possible careers education, information, guidance and support. Each benchmark contains a range of measures of good practice. The 8 benchmarks are :
- A stable careers programme.
- Learning from careers and labour market information (LMI)
- Addressing the needs of each pupil
- Linking curriculum learning to careers
- Encounters with employers and employees
- Experiences of workplaces
- Encounters with Further and Higher Education
- Personal Guidance.
In conjunction with our Enterprise Coordinator, the school evaluates its programme against each of these benchmarks – and against the national data for each benchmark.
For information on the most recent evaluation data – please contact Mr Andy Bethell
The effects of the Pandemic meant that work experience placements were severely disrupted in 2020 and 2021. WE were lucky that our 2020 work experience week happened in early March 2020, just prior to lockdown – and that 100% of the Year 10 students secured and took up a placement.
Year 10 Work Experience for 2021/22 is scheduled for March 14-18 2022. Full details are being shared with students/parents/carers of Year 10. For any queries, please contact Mrs Melanie Price.
Each year we track the ongoing destinations of leavers from Years 11, 12 or 13 – and share this information with South Glos Council, in order to identify any students needing wider intervention or support. Please see the link below to a privacy notice from South Gloucestershire Council Education, Employment & Training Post 16, for students/parents/carers to understand that we are required to share their data with the Local Authority. PN-Employment-Education-Training-Tracking.pdf (southglos.gov.uk).