A research based appraoch to ensure high quality advice and guidance programmes in schools which utilises employers and a network of Enterprise Co-ordinators.
The Careers Education Information Advice and Guidance (CEIAG) programmes offered to young people at school vary hugely in terms of content, quality and effectiveness. Schools do not find it easy to create links with local businesses and the offer can be too narrow, with insufficient focus on vocational training routes. Employers report that young people are not adequately prepared for the world of work, and young people repot they are not adequately informed of the choices and options available to them.
The Gatsby Benchmarks provide a quality framework for CEIAG. Schools self assess their programme against 8 Quality statements, and plan improvements which improve their Gatsby score.
The Careers Hub supports schools in the achievement of their Gatsby Benchmarks via a team of Enterprise Co-ordinators who link each school with a senior manager form a local business (An Enterprise Advisor). These Advisors work closely with their school at a strategic level to plan a programme of changes which will improve the school’s score against the Gatsby Benchmarks, and hence deliver better CEIAG to students.
The main stakeholders are:
• The Careers and Enterprise Company
• The Local Authorities within the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership area
• Employers and employer representative bodies
• Schools and colleges
Initial budget of £405,000 per annuum and staff team of 8 covering 70+ schools
Evidence of success
Pilot studies show that schools who participate in a Careers Hub improve their score against the 8 Gatsby Benchmarks.
Locally, achievements include:
• With the exception of BM 1&7, all benchmarks have increased. .
• BM2 & 4 significant improvement: a number of resources are provided via HotSW CH newsletter, Inc. LMI and lesson plans, to drive this.
The following points would contribute to the success of any similar project:
• A named careers leader in each school
• Strong links to local employers and employer representative groups
• Position the Careers Hub firmly within the Local Authority
• Establish a baseline with each school
Potential for learning or transfer
The Gatsby Benchmarks have been devised following a careful programme of research and would appear to be valid and relevant to any school/college.
The Careers Hub Modal is an innovative approach which has proven its success in early trials. It is cost effective and appealing to both employers and schools and bridges the gap between education and work in a new way. The Careers Hub Modal is simple and not difficult to replicate or scale up, given adequate resources.