Careers Guidance

What is a career?

It is an individual’s progression through learning and work so it is very important that our pupils make well informed and realistic choices about their future lives and careers. Career information, education and guidance (CIEG) aims to enable young people to become effective planners and managers of their own careers, in a rapidly changing world of learning and work. Consequently we aim to help students develop the skills and confidence to make these decisions for themselves, and to manage the transitions from one stage of their education, training and work to the next. We aim to provide an effective programme of personal guidance and curriculum activities to enable them to do this.

We help our students to find out what they want to do, and who they want to be when they complete their formal education. We encourage them to think about what they love, what they are good at, and to find a career that suits their skills.

We allow our students to develop and practise the self-help skills they need to progress their own career plans and development, including making discerning use of careers information, advice and guidance, available at school and elsewhere. The Careers section of the school library is well stocked with up to date information and students have access to web-based programmes relevant to their age and requirements, as well as careers web sites and also information on post 14, post 16 and post 18 option choices.

For example;

Form tutors deliver the careers programme and ensure that it is relevant to each of their tutees, advising them individually as appropriate.

We consider that it very important that students make GCSE and A-level choices relevant to their own situation. Therefore each pupil has a personal interview with the Head of Careers and access to a fully qualified advisor if needed.

All students also have the chance to be involved in many other exciting opportunities, such as the National Citizenship Scheme, Young Enterprise, Dragons Den and many varied and different events during National Careers Week.

To discover what happens at each stage please use the year group links below. Contact our careers coordinator Mrs Barham on if you need any more information.

Upper 3 (Year 7)

During this year the importance of setting targets and how they can help to achieve goals will be explained. Pupils will have the opportunity to explore their own skills and qualities and how these can help in identifying their strengths and possible career interests. They will also have the chance to develop their teamwork skills during charity week planning.

Lower 4 (Year 8)

During this year pupils will review target setting and study skills. They will explore job families, budgeting and understanding about work and employability. They will spend time developing their career research skills, and learn how to make decisions.

Upper 4 (Year 9)

During this year the girls will make some important choices about their GCSE option subjects. Before choosing these subjects they will be given the opportunity to talk to subject staff, as well as L5 (year 10) girls who are already studying that subject. They will also have an interview with the Head of Careers if required, to discuss possible career aspirations and how these might influence their subject choice. They will also be given the opportunity to attend a Careers Convention to discuss career possibilities with employers, universities etc. At the end of the year they are introduced to Unifrog, a destinations platform.

Lower 5 (Year 10)

During this year the girls will use web-based skills and interests questionnaires, to suggest possible careers linked to their skills and interests. They will consider the rights and responsibilities of employers and employees and be made aware of the laws to protect school age students whilst working. They will also participate in the Sixth Form Taster Day when they are given the opportunity to find out more about A level subjects, as well as life in the Sixth Form. During the day the Head of Careers, Head of Sixth Form, Sixth Form Tutors, as well as Subject Staff, are all available to answer any questions about careers, A level courses, and life in the Sixth form, as are current members of the Sixth form.

Upper 5 (Year 11)

During this year the girls will make some important decisions which may affect their future career. We will support and advise them so that they are able to make sensible and informed choices, about their A level subjects or other courses. The girls will have an interview with the Head of Careers, as well as the opportunity to attend the Sixth Form Open Evening and talk to subject staff about A level courses, including the Extended Project Qualification. They will be given advice on how to prepare for an interview and they will also prepare a CV and Personal Statement.

Sixth form (Years 12 and 13)

It is essential that the girls carefully research all options available to them after they leave school at the end of Upper 6. The sixth form tutors offer support to their tutees and encourage them to make choices most suitable to their ability and interests. This is done in conjunction with subject staff. The Head of Careers is also available for one-to-one discussions.

The majority of our Sixth Formers go onto university and the girls are encouraged to thoroughly research all options before making their application; extensively using Unifrog. There are also books and university prospectuses available in the Careers section of the school library to help with this.

Any girl who is considering not going to University will be advised by both her tutor and the Head of Careers, to ensure that she makes an informed decision about her future career, including Apprenticeship and Gap Year options . They will also be given the opportunity to attend a Careers Convention to discuss career aspirations with employers, universities etc.

Many girls will undertake Work Experience, Voluntary Work or attend courses that are relevant to her future Career. This may include targeted talks e.g. Oxford and Cambridge application. Mock interviews are arranged, with feedback, for those girls who apply to Oxford or Cambridge University, and for those applying to courses such as Medicine or Veterinary Science.