Mrs Helen Tadman is the Careers Co-ordinator at the school and she is assisted by Miss Heather Morgan.
The Careers Department is part of a network of support which includes Form Tutors, Heads of Year, subject teachers and the UCAS team. The aim of the Careers department is to provide pupils with access to a wide range of resource information, advice and guidance, particularly those pupils faced with making key decisions about GCSE options, A-levels, Higher Education and their future careers.
In the First Year during Life Studies lessons the pupils begin to think about what skills and talents they have. They explore the qualities and dispositions needed to do certain jobs, look at how they can develop themselves further and they will start to put together their first CV.
The pupils discuss the variety of types of work and the reasons why people do certain jobs in the Second Year. They are introduced to the computer software that we use to research GCSE courses and websites where they can find out about many different careers.
The pupils work through a booklet in Life Studies lessons in preparation for the Second Year Careers Day. This is an afternoon where we have representatives from over 20 different industries and businesses who give presentations and talk to the pupils about what they do on a daily basis in their jobs. This gives the pupils a real insight into careers they may be interested in and possibly some they had not thought about.
Following on from the Careers afternoon the previous year, the Third Year pupils continue to do research on GCSE courses and possible careers during their Life Studies lessons. The pupils will also spend time in the Careers room either during lessons or during a lunch time session. The Careers advisors are on hand to answer any questions that they may have. The pupils are also invited to attend any career talks that are held at lunch time. The Careers staff are present at the Third Year Options Evening and are happy to answer questions from both pupils and parents.
In the Fourth Year the pupils start work on an action plan which identifies their skills and strengths and areas that they wish to develop and improve. They continue to research and formulate ideas about what careers they might wish to pursue. Every two years we hold a Careers Convention with over 20 universities and 40 different job areas represented. Pupils in the Fourth Year and above are invited to this with their parents and have the opportunity to find out about various careers and study options.
In preparation for their A-level choices, the Fifth Year continue to work in Life Studies lessons focussing on qualification requirements to follow certain careers. Pupils are encouraged to choose subjects that they enjoy and are good at.
Pupils are invited to have a one-to-one Careers interview or to come along at lunchtime for an informal chat. They build on work in the lower school to prepare a CV that they can use when applying for work experience. All pupils are encouraged to undertake work experience once they have completed their GCSE exams in June. This gives them an invaluable insight into possible careers that they might want to follow. Fifth Year pupils are also encouraged to attend the Careers Convention and any of the lunch time talks. The Sixth Form Open Evening takes place in October and allows the pupils and parents to find out more about subjects that interest them.
Once the pupils are in the Sixth Form they have open access to the Careers room and again are free to organise a one-to-one careers interview. In the June of Lower Sixth they attend two full days to prepare them for university applications or the world of work. They are assigned a UCAS advisor who works closely with them on preparing their personal statement and advising them on the most suitable courses and universities to apply for.