At St Michael’s we aim to provide every opportunity for our pupils to flourish as a child of God; to grow in body, mind and spirit and experience ‘life in all its fullness’ and this is reflected in our comprehensive and effective careers programme.
We are proud of the depth and quality of experiences offered to our pupils across all years and feel it prepares our young people for success in the future, whether this be in higher education, training or employment.
Careers Education, Information, Advice and Guidance (CEIAG) at St Michael’s forms an essential aspect of every pupils’ personal education and future well-being. Within Living Education, all year groups are taught about different aspects of Careers. In Year 7 we start by trying to raise our pupils’ aspirations and to challenge career stereotypes, while also introducing pupils to Unifrog (a career development platform).
As our pupils take their options in Year 9, we focus the Careers unit of work in Living Education to choosing their options and picking out strengths, interests and aspirations. In Years 9 – 11 they begin learning how to write personal statements, their online reputation and learning what and how to use the labour market information.
In addition to Living Education, in Year 10 pupils also study a Careers lesson once every 4 weeks, where local colleges and apprenticeship providers come in to school to teach our pupils about their different Post-16 pathway options, spotlighting A-Levels, apprenticeships, T-Levels and vocational courses. In line with the school’s legal duty under the ‘Baker Clause’ (2018) pupils are provided opportunities for encounters with a range of education and training providers for the purpose of informing them about approved technical education qualifications and apprenticeships.
The pupils are also provided taster sessions for subjects they have not yet studied, for example, Sociology, Psychology or Law, to give them insight into what the pursuit of these subjects might include. The feedback we get from our pupils in Year 10 about this programme is really positive.
Within the individual curriculum areas pupils are introduced to career pathways linked to the specific subject discipline, showcasing how and where that subject could lead them. We are continually developing our curriculum area content by embedding more career guidance.
The CEIAG provision outlined above aims to meet The Gatsby Benchmarks, which are a national framework containing eight guidelines that define the best careers provision in schools and colleges. The quality of St Michael’s CEIAG programme is reviewed and assessed annually against The Gatsby Benchmarks by The Careers and Enterprise Company Compass Tracker.
These are the eight Gatsby Benchmarks:
A stable careers programme
Learning from Career & Labour Market Information
Addressing the needs of each pupil
Linking curriculum learning to Careers
Encounters with employers & employees
Experience of workplaces
Encounters with further and higher education
We are continually looking for ways to develop our CEIAG provision across the school making adaptations to address the needs of every pupil. These are the more recent adaptations and experiences we have introduced for our recent academic years.
2020-2021 Academic year
Throughout the periods of remote learning as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic adaptations were made to provide career guidance through virtual talks and online resources. In addition, responding to the needs of the current Year 11 pupils a bespoke week of experiences was developed in their final week of school which focused on their wellbeing and their future. Colleges and sixth form schools led lessons ‘virtually’ in subjects not taught in schools, such as Classics, Psychology, Sociology and Criminology, as well as taking part in teambuilding activities, mental health talks and life skills.
The programme is below:
2021-2022 Academic year
The Year 10 career lessons provide several opportunities for pupils to engage with a range of different education providers including those offering vocational courses, T-Levels and apprenticeships. As a consequence of periods of remote learning and essential restrictions to external visitors, we recognised that pupils undertaking the Year 10 career lessons in the 2020-21 academic year had a reduced opportunity to engage with a variety of Post-16 education providers. In response we organised a Careers Fair for these pupils, now Year 11, to provide them with an opportunity to engage with and seek advice from a range of education providers, apprenticeship providers and employers. In attendance at the Careers Fair were over 30 professionals with representatives from Blackburn College, Cardinal Newman, Myerscough College, Preston College, Runshaw College, The Sixth Form Bolton, Westholme Sixth Form, Wigan and Leigh College, NEMA Ltd, Training 2000, Edgehill University, armed forces, aviation, Department for Work and Pensions, law, NHS, NWAS, police and social work. Parents and carers were invited to attend the fair afterschool in order to engage in discussions with their sons/daughters.
For the 2021-22 academic year we redesigned the career focused Christian Value Enrichment days for July 2022. In addition to the Runshaw Sample Day, pupils were provided with a further Post-16 sampling opportunity at Myerscough College where they experienced Animal Studies, Equine Studies, Motorsport and Sport courses on offer for Post-16. Pupils also received a talk on the higher education courses available at Myerscough College and were provided aspirational insights into where these higher education opportunities could lead them in the future. In addition, a bespoke work experience day was organised for all pupils in the year group. In response to feedback collated on current pupil career interests the year group were split into small groups. Workplace visits were organised for the individual groups with professionals and employers across Chorley at which pupils were given career advice and guidance about the individual fields, personal guidance from professionals about their careers to date and workplace and environment tours. Businesses involved across the two days included Asda, Astley Hall exhibition, Calico Lounge, C+K Jewellers, Chic Happens, Chocobella, Chorley Council, Chorley Group, Chorley Library, Coast Hairdressers, Derian House, Doodles, Highgrove House, Hillcrest, Lancashire Constabulary, Lancashire Fire and Rescue, Malcolm’s Musicland, Marshall’s Florist, McDonalds, Nationwide, New Look, NIS Engineering, Peter Gilkes, Specsavers, Sports Direct, Tesco, TSB, TUI and Vision Express. In addition to this workplace experiences pupils received talks at school from representatives of BAE Engineering, NHS and business owners and lessons that explored pupil interests, resilience and the Unifrog careers platform.
2022-2023 Academic year
In the forthcoming academic year we will continue to respond to the emerging needs and interests of our pupils in the St Michael’s Year 11 Careers Fair and are exploring opportunities to re-introduce formal work experience week opportunities for Year 10 pupils.
If you have any questions about Careers please contact:
Miss Emma Curtis - Leader in Learning for Careers, Enterprise and Vocational Education.
We have put a link to some websites/documents below which will allow you to understand different opportunities available to our pupils.
- https://resources.careersandenterprise.co.uk/resources/16-choices - post 16 options information
- https://resources.careersandenterprise.co.uk/resources/amazing-apprenticeships-parent-and-carer-packs - parent/carer apprenticeship packs and information
- https://amazingapprenticeships.com/app/uploads/2020/12/Parent-Pack-December-2020.pdf - parent/carer apprenticeship packs and information (December 2020 edition)
- https://successatschool.org/advice/162 - parent/carer advice for lots of different areas; employability skills, interview skills, applying for jobs etc
- http://moodle.saint-michaels.lancs.sch.uk/course/view.php?id=1571 - our school Moodle page. Please select 'Lower' or 'Upper' school > Log in to view the information available
Links to local Colleges & Training Providers
Don’t forget that College Open Events are one of the best ways to get up to date and accurate information on specific courses and entry requirements which can change year on year. Please look on our Careers Moodle page and have a look at some of the virtual tours!
The links below are useful for finding information:
Runshaw College – www.runshaw.ac.uk
Cardinal Newman College – www.cardinalnewman.ac.uk
Myerscough College – www.myerscough.ac.uk
Hutton Sixth Form College – www.huttongrammar.org
Preston's College – www.preston.ac.uk
Blackburn College – www.blackburn.ac.uk
Training 2000 – www.training2000.co.uk (this is the business who have come in to school to speak to you about apprenticeships)
The Apprentice Guide - www.apprenticeshipguide.co.uk
The National Apprenticeship Website - www.gov.uk/apply-apprenticeship
North Lancs Training Group – www.nltg.co.uk
Local Apprenticeship Employers:
- BAE Systems - www.baesystems.com/en/careers
- NHS - www.jobs.nhs.uk/
- Lancashire Constabulary - www.lancashire.police.uk/
- UCLan - www.uclan.ac.uk/
- Booths - http://recruitment.booths.co.uk/