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 topics such as communication, problem solving and teamwork as well as health and safety, taking responsibility, developing skills and mentoring. These skills will prepare pupils for further career exploration in Key Stage 4.

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 Work Related Learning lessons two afternoons per week. Learning focuses on occupations, employability and enterprise. This is delivered through a series of workshops and cover a range of occupations. Students take part in several different workshop sessions to suit their ability and their interest. 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 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 who are able to work independently also take part in a two-week work experience in their own local community Monday through Friday during working hours. 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.

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 and enterprise skills are woven into the daily curriculum. Students have various job responsibilities around the school and college sites and take part in weekly work-related learning, called Yew2Work,  in the local community. They have been able to practice their job skills in such placements as shops, grocery stores, cafés and day centres. 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.

Whole-school

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:

  • Listening
  • Presenting
  • Problem Solving
  • Creativity
  • Staying Positive
  • Aiming High
  • Leadership
  • Teamwork

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.

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.