Careers Education and Work Related Learning

At St. Joseph’s, Careers Education and Work Related Learning are important for all young people, in all pathways.

It helps students to:

  • Understand themselves and the world around them
  • Prepare for future opportunities
  • Develop the skills and self-confidence necessary to make realistic and informed decisions about their future so that they can maximise their potential
  • It is a curriculum that works towards preparing the learners for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of adult life
  • To have a role in their community that is recognised
  • Become aspirational

At St Joseph’s it is important that students have the opportunity to:

  • Learn about work
  • Learn for work
  • Learn through work

Our careers programme is guided by The 8 Gatsby Benchmarks which help schools deliver high quality careers and enterprise provision:

  1. A stable careers programme
  2. Learning from career and labour market information
  3. Addressing the needs of each pupil
  4. Linking curriculum learning to careers
  5. Encounters with employers and employees
  6. Experiences of workplaces
  7. Encounters with further and higher education
  8. Personal guidance

Careers Education and Work Related Learning

Careers Education and Guidance is delivered through a combination of work preparation activities in each pathway, Life and Living Skills through OCR and a travel skills programme alongside work experience and enterprise opportunities. This programme offers a wide range of experiences which enables students to understand and to experience opportunities in the world of work. In turn it develops their personal and independence skills to enable for a successful adulthood.

Travel Skills

Managing to use the public transport system either independently or with appropriate staff support can be a huge step for our students. Classes or individuals will go out into the community with staff; they are responsible for planning the bus route, buying their tickets, finding a place to sit, watching for the stop they need to get off at and repeat for the return route. We practise bus journeys to Guildford and then the safe route to walk to the student’s work place. This enables students to independently travel to their work placement. This is also undertaken to support student’s travel options when they are transitioning into supported living.

Life and Living Skills

A huge part of this subject is about students learning to keep themselves safe, recognising and responding to safety signage, understanding health and hygiene and independently following spoken, written or pictorial instructions. All these skills are necessary in work placements. Students work as a team to make lunches for the class. This is considered “work” and students recognise they have responsibilities within the team; without fulfilling them the lunch will not be completed. This supports skills needed in the workplace.

Careers and Work Related Learning Sessions

These sessions are taught by the class team and can be class based or individualised. As part of the sessions, students are encouraged to take note of their own skills, talents and challenges. Students look at their likes and dislikes; if they like to work as part of a team or alone. They practise interview techniques, look at the different types of relationships, the different types of clothes or uniforms for jobs, responsibilities and the importance of honesty and respect. Students learn about safety equipment and safety clothing. Students learn what appropriate clothing to wear for an interview, for different types of jobs or circumstances.

During these sessions, students are given the opportunity to document their work experience and their role in the class enterprises to demonstrate their skills, work ethic and ethos. Each student will also design their own written, pictorial or electronic CV and keep this up dated. All activities support students OCR Accreditations and demonstrate The Gatsby Benchmarks 1, 2 and 4.

Older students and parents, working alongside our SENCO team, may choose to transition to an alternative college and undertake joint participation in our curriculum whilst pursuing a more vocational part time course in a local college. This has been very successful with Merrist Wood, NESCOT and Reading College, illustrating our commitment to The Gatsby benchmark 7.

Five Year Transition Plan

Following our 5 Year Transition Plan the transition team undertakes a vocational profile with each student ready to transition from us to supported living or further education. This often informs the Work Related Learning Coordinator in selecting appropriate placements for the student to work towards their end goal.

The transition team liaises with families, students, care staff and teachers to plan the transition away from St. Joseph’s in line with The Gatsby Benchmarks 3 and 8. The transition team shares information regarding educational opportunities and supported living placements and supports visits to these establishments to see if they are appropriate for the young person.

The transition team, alongside families liaises with the local authorities and social workers to discuss the transition opportunities for each student.