Supporting our students in preparing for adulthood is ultimately what drives our curriculum at Yewstock. We aim to equip our children and young people with the tools needed for ensuring good health, friendships, relationships and community involvement, independent living and employment and occupation. The intent of our Careers Education, Information, Advice & Guidance (CEIAG) programme is to focus on the needs of our students, nurture aspirations, and to help them to recognise and develop knowledge and skills for their own personal careers journey.
The structure of Careers Education at Yewstock is implemented in various ways based on need, ability and Key Stage. Our Careers Education groups are:
Discoveries: EYFS & Primary
In Early Years & Primary, pupils are encouraged to make discoveries…staff guide and support children to discover a sense of self, the world around them and their place in it. Here, they develop valuable career-related skills that are essential building blocks needed in a variety of employment settings and occupations. They include: self-confidence and self-awareness, managing relationships, conflict and situations, communication, people and communities, technology and functional skills. Pupils are also introduced to the concept of ‘work’ and ‘jobs’ through role-play, educational visits and assemblies and events.
Explorations: Key Stage 3
In Key Stage 3 pupils begin to make explorations about the meaning of work and careers…pupils access Careers Education through activities in either Vocational Skills units in Equals: Moving On lessons or weekly Work Related Learning lessons. They are introduced to a variety of units of work which include local workplace/employer/employee encounters, work and life-skills, and enterprise projects, these units of work are underpinned with work from the Developing Yourself, World of Work and Employability Skills framework. These skills will prepare pupils for further career exploration in Key Stage 4. KS3 pupils will have their first meetings with an independent careers advisor to help explore possible routes and plan for future endeavours.
Pathways: Key Stage 4
In Key Stage 4 students access a range of pathways to work…students complete Vocational Skills units in Equals: Moving On lessons and/or take part in Careers Education lessons two times per week. Learning focuses on occupations, employability and enterprise. This covers a range of occupations and is delivered through a series of units of work focussed on a particular work sector. Each unit includes work and life-skills, local workplace/employer/employee encounters, further education visits and workshops and options for enterprise activities. We aim to support students in developing an awareness of self and discovering the purpose and value of working. The purpose of Pathways is to give our young people exposure to the world around them, broadening their horizons so that they are better able to make well-informed, realistic choices about their future and lead productive, fulfilled lives as adults. Year 11 students also take part in a two-week work experience. This may be independently in their own local community or bespoke activities supported by school staff. This is set up in cooperation with parents and carers through a local work experience partnership service. This opportunity allows the students to have a real-life employment experience. Students also have access to regular independent careers guidance.
Choices: Key Stage 5
In Key Stage 5, staff, professionals and parents and carers support students with their transition to adulthood and making choices for their future. Students enhance their knowledge and skills with qualifications in World of Work units in OCR: Life and Living Skills and through daily and weekly work experiences. Employability, independent work and life-skills, and enterprise skills are woven into the daily curriculum, the main focus of which is preparing for adulthood (PfA). Students have various job responsibilities around the school and college sites and take part in work-related learning, called Yew2Work, and take part in supported work placements in the local community. They have been able to practice their job skills in such placements as shops, grocery stores, cafés and day centres, some of which have led to successful employment upon leaving Yewstock. The curriculum also includes local workplace/employer/employee visits and encounters as well as further education visits and transition activities. The Post 16 curriculum offers students the opportunity to develop a variety of skills which will help them as adults and will give them a head start in finding meaningful work, whether this is in a supported work placement, volunteering, or in paid employment.
Yewstock’s Careers Education programme is represented in three strands that are accessed in different ways dependent upon stage, level and ability. The 3 strands are: Developing Yourself, World of Work and Employability Skills.
Embedded into careers-related learning across the school, are eight essential skills essential for any route into independence and meaningful occupation. They are:
- Problem Solving
- Staying Positive
- Aiming High
In addition, a whole-school careers activity is offered to provide further opportunities for learning and unique experiences. They may include group activities, trips to places of employment in the local community, guest speakers, special assemblies or Careers Days or Careers Weeks.
At Yewstock there is a strong emphasis throughout the entire curriculum to develop our learners for the future. Our new framework for developing work related skills for independent living (Work and Life-Skills) gives a framework for developing key skills throughout students’ time at Yewstock. These skills will be developed to promote independence and prepare students for the world of work, increasing their chances of success.
As a direct result of Yewstock’s Career Education programme, our children and young people:
- have an improved sense of self and a sense of the working world around us. They begin to recognise skills and qualities within themselves and can identify different jobs in the community, what they look like and what they do;
- have identified, asked questions about and sought answers about a range of work opportunities available to them and what skills and qualities are needed. They can begin to find out how to gain skills needed for a job they might want to do;
- have had a range of work experiences that show what they like/don’t like and what they are good at/need to improve. They begin to seek out experiences they enjoy and opportunities to improve skills;
- have received information, advice and guidance from staff, outside agencies and employers. They have joined in a variety of real-life work related learning activities and begin to seek out specific information needed for their future;
- have made informed choices and decisions about future occupation. They visualise the future and are involved in planning ahead and preparing for transition to adulthood.
Yewstock’s link governor for Careers Education is Jeanette Rogers, a former Ansbury Careers advisor.
To see a list of destinations our leavers have progressed to click here.