The Government’s December 2017 Careers Strategy states that all schools and colleges should have a named Careers Leader in place. Careers Leaders have responsibility for the delivery of a school’s careers programme. They should be ensuring, among other things, that:
1. The school has a good careers programme that meets the expectations set out in the Gatsby Benchmarks.
2. The school has published on its website details of its careers programme and arrangements for providers of technical education or apprenticeships to talk to pupils.
3. The destinations of young people from the school are tracked and this information is used to improve the effectiveness of the school’s careers programme.
The following information is designed to support our Careers Leaders in schools and colleges across the county including advice and best practice.
A guide for new Careers Leaders can be found here.
The Gatsby Benchmarks
The Gatsby Benchmarks set out a framework for schools and colleges to deliver ‘good career guidance’.
1. A stable careers programme
Every school and college should have an embedded programme of career education and guidance that is known and understood by pupils, parents, teachers and employers.
2. Learning from career and labour market information
Every pupil, and their parents, should have access to good-quality information about future study options and labour market opportunities. They will need the support of an informed adviser to make best use of available information.
3. Addressing the needs of each pupil
Pupils have different career guidance needs at different stages. Opportunities for advice and support need to be tailored to the needs of each pupil. A school’s careers programme should embed equality and diversity considerations throughout.
4. Linking curriculum learning to careers
All teachers should link curriculum learning with careers. For example, STEM subject teachers should highlight the relevance of STEM subjects for a wide range of future career paths.
5. Encounters with employers and employees
Every pupil should have multiple opportunities to learn from employers about work, employment and the skills that are valued in the workplace. This can be through a range of enrichment activities including visiting speakers, mentoring and enterprise schemes.
6. Experiences of workplaces
Every pupil should have first-hand experiences* of the workplace through work visits, work shadowing and/or work experience to help their exploration of career opportunities, and expand their networks.
7. Encounters with further and higher education
All pupils should understand the full range of learning opportunities that are available to them. This includes both academic and vocational routes and learning in schools, colleges, universities and in the workplace.
8. Personal guidance
Every pupil should have opportunities for guidance interviews with a careers adviser, who could be internal (a member of school staff) or external, provided they are trained to an appropriate level. These should be available whenever significant study or career choices are being made. They should be expected for all pupils but should be timed to meet their individual needs.
It is important to note that special schools, PRUs and colleges may not find all the benchmarks relatable to their context and therefore may need to adapt to their circumstances.
Detailed explanations of the 8 benchmarks, along with practical tips and examples of best practice can be found in Careers and Enterprise Toolkits:
The Compass Tool allows you to self-assess and audit your current careers programme against the 8 Gatsby Benchmarks in around 30 minutes. It provides a report that can be used to plan improvements and action plans to better prepare young people for the world of work.
Tracker allows you to build and manage the annual plan for careers & enterprise activity at the school, targeted to gaps or low scores in the compass results. Tracker allows you to easily record events, classes and all careers activities in one place. This can then be accessed, download and shared in Word or Excel format with colleagues, Leadership Teams, OfSTED, governors, Enterprise Coordinators and Enterprise Advisers. Finally the tool allows for evaluation of successes of completed activities
Are you looking to refresh your knowledge as a designated Careers Lead or new to the role?
The Careers and Enterprise Company and TeachFirst have designed a short course of five modules to help Careers Leaders to review your careers provision, maximise your resources, work with partners and pull everything together in a plan. Register here
Click here to search for Careers Activity Providers in your area.Search using your postcode for providers in your area and then on the results page, you can refine your results by Gatsby Benchmark, key stage, curriculum subject and cost so that you can fill any gaps in your careers activities provision.