Careers Education, Information and Guidance

VISION STATEMENT

Careers education and guidance at Somervale School enables all students to have high aspirations through supported and informed decision-making about their futures. A clear guidance programme is of vital importance in ensuring that students are successful, make positive contributions to society and feel fulfilled in their working lives.

The Baker Clause stipulates that schools must allow colleges and training providers access to every student in years 7 - 13 to discuss all career routes that are available to them. DfE Guidance states “Schools and colleges have a responsibility to set students on the path that will secure the best outcome which will enable them to progress in education and work and give employers the highly skilled people they need. That means schools and colleges must act impartially, in line with their statutory duty or contractual requirement, and not show bias towards any route, be that academic or technical. They should promote a full range of technical options.” To demonstrate this good practice, Somervale School ensures that all students are provided with meaningful encounters and experiences in order to offer each of them a unique pathway towards their chosen career.

Somervale School has a comprehensive and inclusive careers programme, giving opportunities for all students to encounter a variety of experiences.

This is delivered through:

  • Careers Week
  • Assemblies
  • Visiting employers and workplaces
  • STEM experiences
  • Educational visits to Higher Education establishments
  • Curriculum linked career presentations
  • Workshops that focus on skills based learning
  • Mock interviews with external experienced business professionals
  • Vocational learning through the use of Somer Valley Trust
  • Tutor mentoring
  • Individual meetings with our independent careers advisor, Ros Windsor
  • Alumni presentations
  • SLT support through the Options process in Year 9
  • PSHCE lessons
  • Use of tutor times to investigate potential careers pathways and career sectors
  • Writing a CV
  • A designated Careers Google Classroom, which is updated weekly for all students

Somervale School has consistently met all 8 Gatsby Benchmarks since the introduction of these standards in 2017. In a recent COMPASS evaluation, we continue to make progress on all of the benchmarks with a view to embedding the already good practice we have within our careers curriculum.

Evidence of Progress

Date/term Benchmark 1 Benchmark 2 Benchmark 3 Benchmark 4 Benchmark 5 Benchmark 6 Benchmark 7 Benchmark 8
Dec 2020 82% 100% 90% 100% 100% 12% 100% 100%
Mar 2021 94% 100% 100% 100% 100% 87% 100% 100%
Jun 2021 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%


At Somervale School we assess the impact of the careers programme through student voice questionnaires, teacher voice questionnaires, parental feedback and progress data at the end of Key Stage Four. Evaluation is an indicator as to how we can make improvements to our programme, ensuring students are provided with the most appropriate support.

Post-16 Destinations

Destinations for students post Year 11 are monitored, collated and updated regularly. These are then monitored again the September following leaving Year 11 as part of the required September Guarantee. NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training) figures are consistently extremely low (2020: 6%) and below the national average (National data for 2020: 11.5%).

Post-16, students attend one of the following:

  • MSN Sixth Form
  • Bath College (both City Centre and Somer Valley campuses, dependent on course)
  • Apprenticeships at Level 2 and Level 3
  • Chippenham College
  • Hartpury College
  • Lackham College
  • St Brendan’s Sixth Form College
  • Other local Sixth Forms

Careers Partners

The following institutions and employers participate and support Somervale students within our careers programme:

MSN Sixth

ASK Apprenticeships

AirBus

Bath College

Bath Spa University

Bristol Robin’s Foundation NCS

Careers Week 2021

At the end of the summer term, all Year 10 students were provided with an intensive Careers Week. All students participated in activities that focus on careers information and considering their choices. These included:

  • Workshops from NCS, Bristol Robin’s Foundation, ASK Apprenticeships
  • Presentations from Bath Spa University, MSN Sixth, Bath College
  • Creating CVs
  • Participation in Virtual Work Experience (VWEX) Preparation and completion of Mock Interviews with employers from the local community as well as virtual Mock Interviews with employees from AirBus
  • Alumni talks from previous students who have gone onto all careers pathways, ranging from Further Education, apprenticeships, Higher Education and beyond
  • Completing self evaluation to examine student learning and possible career pathways

Students will also revisit their Mock Interviews in Year 11 to further enhance their experience

Independent Careers Guidance

Ros Windsor is the Independent Careers Adviser for Somervale, Norton Hill School and Midsomer Norton Sixth Form. All students are provided with at least two opportunities to have meetings to discuss their potential Post 16 choices.

Ros is available in Somervale School on Wednesdays and Norton Hill School on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

If anyone, pupil, parent, teacher has any questions, please contact her via rwindsor@nortonhillschool.com or 07980872120

 

How to Research Careers

CareerPilot
Careerpilot is an award winning careers information website where you can research amongst other things:

  • Your choices at 14, 16 and 18
  • Information about different job sectors and up to date labour market information
  • Signposts to other recommended websites
  • Parentzone to provide support for parents

www.careerpilot.org.uk

Careers Resources

  • National Careers Service provides help, guidance and information.
  • For careers that need a degree or similar qualification Prospects has information about job roles, qualifications required and what careers particular degrees can lead to.
  • For information on apprenticeships, what they involve and how you can find one follow this link.
  • Local careers information, volunteering opportunities and up to date job sector information available.

No idea what you want to do?

Don’t feel like you are the only person who doesn’t have a clue what you want to do! There are a number of quizzes and assessments designed to help you generate ideas. Here are some of the best:​

  • Spartan Test – one of the most exciting tests around. No words, just pictures and a sophisticated algorithm profile provides you with word clouds for degrees, careers and apprenticeships.
  • For younger students – Years 7, 8 and 9.