We work with family from pre-birth all the to beyond school. We know that working with families in this way enables us to know each other deeply, to signpost opportunities that are right for individuals and to support all members of the family so that their children can go on to enjoy lives of choice and opportunity.
Much of our cradle-to-career work happens in partnership with The Reach Children’s Hub. Read more about their work in their Annual Report.
Careers Curriculum at Reach Academy Feltham
Our Careers Curriculum is intended to provide a stable careers programme in which all pupils are provided with the opportunity to prepare for leaving education and entering the world of work. The programme is committed to transforming the lives of pupils by providing the skills, attitudes and advice to empower them to embark on a journey after school with the knowledge to make the right decisions, the confidence to achieve their potential and the purpose to explore all opportunities open to them. We intend to raise pupil aspirations, develop employability skills and expose students to the wide range of career paths that are available to them.
This strategy builds on Reach Academy’s driving motivation to ensure that every single pupil is able to live a life of choice and opportunity, and that their teachers are able to support and encourage a range of career paths. It is the school’s objective to develop independent thinkers, who each have clear, achievable and aspirational plans for their futures.
We want to support parents to help pupils make choices and inspire teachers to embed careers into their teaching, so the entire school community has careers at its heart, resulting in pupils living happy and healthy lives.
Below is a term-by-term overview of the careers events over this academic year. This plan is not comprehensive, as opportunities will present themselves over the coming months - these opportunities will be shared with pupils via the weekly ‘Careers and Opportunities Blast’ in the form slides and on Google Classroom as opportunities arise.
As well as the events outlined below, pupils in all year groups will have periodic encounters with various employers and both Further Education and Higher Education providers. This includes employers coming into school to give workshops or assemblies, or as part of our Careers in the Curriculum initiative, as well as visits to local colleges and universities. We will also be organising work experience placements for our BTEC cohorts and Phase 4 pupils.
Careers education is a vital part of working towards the school vision of ensuring all pupils are able to live lives of choice and opportunities. Our careers curriculum is designed to provide students with the knowledge and confidence to make informed decisions about their Post-16, Post-18 and wider career options.
In Phase 1 pupils are being made aware of the variety of careers that exist in the world. They will learn about what these different jobs entail and the day-to-day experience. Throughout Phase 2, pupils will start to explore how their interests might align with different careers, and which subject areas most relate. During Phase 3, pupils will be gaining the knowledge required to begin to form plans for their future. To facilitate this they will have meaningful encounters with a range of employers, as well as being explicitly taught about the options available to them when they leave school. They will learn about different Post-16 and Post-18 pathways including apprenticeships, sixth form colleges and universities. There is also a focus on financial literacy such as budgeting, and understanding salaries and payslips and how to manage debt.
During their time in Phase 4 pupils learn the knowledge and skills needed to be able to articulate clear and realistic choices for their future, and are supported by staff, family and external facilitators to do so. There is a focus on pupils experiencing a variety of meaningful encounters with employers, whether through talks and workshops at school or visits to workplaces and work experience. Pupils will also be given the opportunity to visit a multitude of Further Education and High Education sites, so that they are able to see for themselves the plethora of options that are available to them after school. By the end of Phase 4 all students will have had a 1:1 careers interview in which they are able to talk through their current aspirations and come up with a realistic Post-16 path. Some higher need pupils will be supported by external companies such as Future Frontiers, who facilitate students developing a detailed action plan for their post-16 options, and Hawk Apprenticeships, who support with apprenticeship applications, to develop these plans. Pupils are supported by their teachers and the leadership team to make the right Post-16 choice for them, and will support them with the transition if they choose to attend an institution other than Feltham College.
Over the course of Phase 5, pupils are encouraged and expected to develop a clear and realistic Post-18 path and be able to articulate the narrative to their journey moving forward. They will be supported to do this through bespoke interactions with employers and visits to workplaces, and continued visits to Higher Education providers. Pupils will be spoken to explicitly about the different options available to them post Sixth-Form; pupils wishing to go to university will be supported with UCAS applications, and students that would like to move into an apprenticeship will be supported with these applications too. Pupils will be encouraged to participate in extracurricular activities related to their planned career path to gain as much insight into their potential roles as possible, so that they are able to make informed decisions.
Through all Phases there is an emphasis on pupils developing key employability skills such as communication, leadership, confidence and problem solving. Students are explicitly taught about the behaviour and responsibilities that will be expected of them in the workplace, as well as the rights they have as an employee. Once pupils have been taught these key skills they will be given the opportunity to demonstrate and improve them through in-person Work Experience Placements. As a whole year-group initiative, these placements would generally happen in Y10 or Y12. Pupils may participate in extra work experience placements over Y11-Y13, which are offered to pupils as and when they arise. Additionally, all pupils completing a Business or Health and Social Care BTEC will complete a work experience placement as part of their course.
Our overall provision impact is measured in the following ways:
- A review against the Gatsby Benchmarks every cycle to identify strategic goals for improvement.
- Destinations data for previous cohorts is reviewed to better understand what the outcomes for our pupils are and the impact of our existing provision for those cohorts.
- Pupil, staff and family (where relevant) reflections are completed at all careers events to provide the careers team and senior staff with relevant data to inform future planning of other events.
Careers provision in schools is measured against the eight Gatsby Benchmarks of Good Careers 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
Each academic year, the Careers Lead completes an audit of how we are performing against these benchmarks as a direction of impact and future improvement. Please see the careers strategy document above for further information. This is completed and reviewed on a yearly basis.
From a pupil perspective, the impact of our careers programme is measured through a range of metrics. Feedback is collected after internal events such as Bright Futures Ahead Day via surveys - this allows the careers team to see what the successes of the day were, as well as identifying changes that need to be made in future. Pupils are frequently asked what Careers and Opportunities they would like to learn more about and have access to, which also informs planning for the future calendar of events. Destination data collected at the end of each year allows the careers team to analyse the post-16 and post-18 choices that are made by pupils - at the end of Y11 we would be particularly interested in the numbers that attended Feltham College vs. another sixth form vs. started an apprenticeship, for example. This data allows us to consider the provisions we have in place at Reach Academy, and ensure that the courses and support we offer are appropriate for our pupils. The alumni network that we have cultivated allows an insight into the career choices ex-pupils make, even years after they have left us.
Reach Academy Careers Lead
The Named Careers Lead for the Academy, overseeing all careers engagements is Leah Blunden.
If you have any queries regarding the delivery or content of our careers strategy, or if you are a parent/pupil/employer/teacher please don’t hesitate to contact us via email to email@example.com or by calling 020 8893 1099.
The next Compass+ Gatsby Benchmark review is due to take place by Wednesday 27th March.
The provider access statement is due to be reviewed in September 2024.
The Reach Academy Progression Framework and associated Team Reach Careers Curriculum for the 2024/25 academic year is due to be reviewed in July 2024.