Statutory Obligations for Careers in School

In line with the statutory guidance for governing bodies, school leaders and school staff, Careers guidance and access for education and training providers.

Penketh High Schools Careers policy ensures that all pupils at this school are provided with independent careers guidance from year 7 to year 11. The independent careers guidance provided:  

  • Is presented in an impartial manner, showing no bias or favouritism towards a particular institution, education or work option. 
  • Includes information on the range of education or training options, including apprenticeships. 
  • Is guidance that the person giving it considers will promote the best interests of the pupils to whom it is given. 

Careers guidance at Penketh is a progressive journey from Year 7-11.

The aims of the Careers programme at Penketh are: 

  • To develop positive attitudes in the pupils towards study and work. 
  • To develop employability and enterprise skills, such as teamwork and communication. 
  • To help students to plan and take control of their future making informed choices at key points in their education. 
  • To provide students with the relevant careers inspiration and guidance that is suitable to their personal needs including age, ability, attitudes and aptitudes.  
  • To provide students with a comprehensive understanding of opportunities post 16 and post 18 including traineeships, apprenticeships, school leaver programmes, HE, FE, employment and training opportunities. 
  • To help students to reflect on themselves – their abilities, skills, aptitudes and attitudes – so that they can use this knowledge to consider their development. 
  • To provide students with impartial advice about options that is available to them. 
  • To provide equal opportunity of access to careers inspiration and guidance. 

Implementation of Careers Education

These aims are achieved through the Careers curriculum which is outlined below. All strategies are in line with the Gatsby Benchmarks. Careers Compass is completed twice per year and action points inform improvements.

The Careers Leader along with the Careers Advisor, Curriculum Leaders, Form Tutors  and employers strive for continuous improvement and build on each benchmark further.

The school is strong and committed to all 8 Benchmarks: 

  1. A stable Careers programme 
  2. Learning from Career and labour market information 
  3. Addressing the needs of each pupil 
  4. Linking curriculum learning to careers 
  5. Encounters with employers and employees 
  6. Experience of workplaces 
  7. Encounters with further and higher education 
  8. Personal Guidance 

The Provision

  1. Careers inspiration and support starts in Year 7 through introductory lessons allowing the students to reflect on where they are now and on what they want to do in the future. Students are introduced to the online careers information available to them and they get the opportunity to use a career matching software package through Careers Connect. They are also introduced to the National Careers Service Website focusing on job profiles and job sectors.  
  2. Students continue with this in Year 8 investigating possible career routes and matching skills and qualities to suitable occupations. Students are introduced to possible opportunities and pathways post 16. Stereotyping is addressed in each year group to ensure all students are aware and fully embrace the importance of equal opportunities. The Careers Leader delivers and post 16 providers a whole assembly to the year 8 cohorts about the different post 16 routes available giving in depth discussion of the different courses available including an apprenticeships talk. A local University provide an introduction to Higher Education assembly followed by a Q/A session. Students can also request an impartial Careers interview with the school Careers officer to be scheduled during parents evening. Dragon’s Den Enterprise workshops are delivered focusing on employability and transferable skills. 
  3. Year 9 have a two college taster days with two local post 16 providers. The aim is to engage and motivate pupils to think big. Three local Universities deliver workshops to inspire students and raise awareness of the importance of lifelong learning. Year 9 students are invited to attend the school’s annual Careers Road Show where they can meet with local employers and businesses. Year 9 also receive a whole year group employability, problem solving Dragons Den style Enterprise day, focusing on problem solving and communication skills. Throughout the school year students will have the opportunity to meet with employers from BT and Balfour Beatty. Exploring what employers are looking for and how to sand out from the crowd. 
  4. At the end of Year 10, all pupils take part in a one-week Work Experience programme which involves over 150 employers each year. The aim is to give pupils first-hand experience of the world of work. Some placements are found by the school but the vast majority are found by parents and the students themselves. Students are fully prepared for their placement through planned careers lessons during PSHEE, which include a full investigation into Health and Safety in the workplace. Students receive at least three careers assemblies throughout the year including- finding a suitable placement, a work experience brief and de-brief on their return. All students have access to a Careers Road Show which gives advice and guidance on post 16 & post 18 opportunities in the winter term. There are regular alumni Visits to inspire and motivate students from a variety of pathways. 
  5. Year 11 have a planned Careers Inspiration and Guidance Management Programme that is completed throughout the year. It involves a variety of impartial experiences and workshops with employers and post 16 providers giving inspiration and guidance in a range of industry sectors. Year 11 also take part in a Careers Road Show. This gives students the opportunity to seek impartial guidance and advice from over 50 professionals and organisations, in order to help with their post 16 options and decisions. A workshop is delivered about Apprenticeship opportunities and information is given as to where additional guidance can be received this is delivered by an outside provider. Careers Connect deliver an application form workshop and organises practice interviews for students in Year 11. This experience, together with a personal debrief session, gives students far more confidence during interviews, as well as providing impartial inspiration.

The in house support programme includes investigating post 16 options, letters of application, CV’s, application forms and interview techniques. Students also attend a labour market and National Careers Service research workshop with the Career Curriculum Leader. Students are regularly given open day information during assembly and form time. An information evening is also held at the start of the school year to introduce Options, timeline and revision techniques. Students receive at least three careers assemblies throughout the year giving information on how to utilise the careers opportunities organised within school. Each year 11 student is also interviewed by Careers Connect to engage with college applications and what to expect from a college interview. 
All students participate in an enterprise day delivered by an external provider for students to develop transferable skills. 
The regular enrichment programmes run during lunchtimes to support students with decision making. 

Entitlement to Careers Education and Guidance

All Pupils in Years 7-11 currently have access to an Impartial Careers Advisor and all students in these year groups are regularly reminded to visit the Futures Room during break and lunchtime regarding Careers, Work Experience, Post-14, 16 or 18 Options. This time is fully utilised by students. The Futures Room is updated with prospectuses, apprenticeship and traineeship vacancies, help sheets, careers information and has computer access. 
Students and parents are also encouraged to use the careers link on the school website which gives updates, web links. 
The Careers department makes use of Social Media and encourages both students and parents to follow the department on Twitter for the latest updates. 
There is a calendar of events on the school website which gives students and parents advanced notices of up and coming events, presentations, initiatives and workshops. 
All Year Groups have the opportunity to develop their employability and enterprise skills through taking part in various activities on the Whole School Activity Days. Examples include teamwork, presentation, finance, listening skills and creativity 

Evaluation/Quality Assurance

The school is committed to CPD for Careers and all team members actively seek CPD opportunities. 
Regular meeting with Warrington Borough Council ensures a robust programme which meets all the criteria of the Gatsby Benchmarks and Government Statutory Guidance. 


All student destinations are collected in house by the schools Careers Lead and the Careers Connect Service and changes are made to the Careers programme accordingly.

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