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At Churchdown School we strive for excellence and encourage all of you to aim high. To help achieve this and when looking to progress onto the next stage of your journey; it's always good to have that 'extra factor' to make you stand out from the crowd. In addition, through enriching your experience in specific subjects you will make greater academic progress and may even inspire yourselves. Below are some opportunities to learn something new in a field that interests you. Let your teachers know what you have engaged with, they would love to hear from you. We will update these each half-term. 

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We aim to prepare all students for their working life through a continuous IAG programme that develops employability skills and knowledge of the workplace and further education.
Key Outcomes:

By the end of Key Stage 3:

  1. Develop an awareness of individual skills, strengths and preferred learning styles in relation to Key Stage 4 options
  2. Research different careers analysing skills and educational requirements.
  3. Receive careers information and on-going support from staff such as your Tutor
  4. All students meet with Careers advisor

By the end of Key Stage 4:


  1. Be offered at least one individual appointment  with a Careers advisor and given advice and guidance on post-16 education, employment and training and apprenticeship options
  2. Devise an action plan towards your career goals
  3. Have taken part in an enterprise activity
  4. Have listened to talks on different careers
  5. Have been given the opportunity to speak to representatives from various sectors of the world  of work
  6. Have developed  financial capability skills
  7. Have produced and reviewed a curriculum vitae
  8. Have written a formal letter, e.g. covering letter
  9. Develop presentation and interview skills
  10. Be offered the opportunity to take part in taster days/ sessions

By the end of Key Stage 5:

  1. Be offered at least two individual appointment with a qualified, independent, impartial careers advisor
  2. Participate in an enrichment and tutorial programme focused on your personal development
  3. Have tailored advice and mentoring depending on desired pathway; University, Apprenticeship, Medical and Oxbridge
  4. Opportunity to set targets and review your progress through academic mentoring and on-going support from your tutor and subject teachers
  5. Develop independent research skills
  6. Have had the opportunity to visit Universities, meet University representatives and meet apprenticeship providers
  7. Have been given the opportunity to volunteer or take part in work experience
  8. Understand the UCAS process and be able to research different universities and courses using online resources
  9. Have information and support with financial planning for university, work and training
  10. Have written a personal statement for a UCAS or job application
  11. Have been mentored through the university application process or supported with job or training applications
  12. Developed the necessary employability skills required for success.


7. A Wide World of Choices

Aim - Pupils will have awareness that there are a wide range of careers which may be suitable for them and to know how to research an area of particular interest.


In form times students will investigate and research careers that are new to them. They will develop presentation & research skills presenting their findings to the form group. In each career, they will research potential skills, education, conditions and what a typical day is like.

Gatsby Benchmark 2


8. Year 8 - How The Working World Works.


Aim - Pupils will gain an understanding of the skills required to develop careers successfully and develop and the link between career and personal well being


All students will analyse their leadership and teamwork skills during form and discuss what these bring to the workplace.


All students will then test these skills in an employability day (Satro megastructures) where they will need to work in groups to build ‘mega’ structure that support people in a natural disaster.  This will test all areas of teamwork and leadership as time will be tight!


The skills the students will develop will then be reviewed and evaluated in tutor time the following week.

Gatsby Benchmarks 4


9. Choosing Your Options


Aim - Pupils will have been given the knowledge and skills to make the right decisions about their GCSE options. Pupils will have also developed their enterprise and presentation skills


Year 9 is the moment where students really begin to craft their future by making decisions which will affect their potential career. In order to ensure all students have the skills and knowledge to do this successfully they will:

·         Have a dedicated 1:1 careers tracking interview.

·         Have an opportunity to discuss potential subjects with teachers and Heads of Departments in options evening.

·         Students and their families will be invited to attend an interview with a member of Leadership to discuss their options.

·         Students will be given an opportunity to attend the a Careers Fayre

·         Selected students will be invited to attend Oxford University (G&T)

·         Selected students will be invited to attend GCHQ (Languages)


Gatsby Benchmark 3, 4, 5, 7, 8


10. Exploring the World of Work


Aim - To be able to evaluate and have a good understanding of suitable jobs and to know what it takes to be successful in a job interview

·         All students will take part in a careers day where businesses come in to the school to give talks on the work they do.  Pupils choose which of the speakers are of interest to them.

·         Through PSCHE students create a CV and apply for and interview for a job in their interview days.

Gatsby Benchmark 5, 6


11. The Next Step


Aim – Students apply what they have learnt to make informed decisions on their future.

·         Receive a 1:1 Careers Interview that follows on from their Year 9 interview.

·         Be invited to Churchdown and other Colleges open evenings.

·         Selected students will attend Gloucester College to see the courses available to them. These students will also meet Tracey Toyne (GLOSCOL) in parents evening.

·         Students who need support will be offered a follow on interview that will support them through the application process.

·         Any student undecided will receive bespoke 1:1 support in finding their perfect destination.


Gatsby Benchmarks 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8



Key Stage 5



1. Year 12 will be given a careers tracking meeting in February. Year 13 will be given a careers meeting in October. These interviews are conducted by the school independent careers advisor.

Gatsby Benchmarks 2, 3 and 8


2. The enrichment programme is shown in the appendix. This gives students that develops a range of skills and knowledge. Students track and set targets during the Academic Mentoring Programme in tutor time and track, monitor the competencies in Unifrog

Gatsby Benchmarks 3 and 8


3. Pathways are identified and supported through individual guidance from Pastoral Team, Unifrog, Next Steps Evening and University visits. K Williams is our designated Oxbridge and Medivac tutor.

Gatsby Benchmarks 3 and 5


4. Academic mentoring is completed during form time on an individual basis.

Gatsby Benchmarks 1,4 and 8


5. Enrichment programmes are tailored on subject specific study skills in year 12. Using Unifrog students are able to research University, MOOCs, and Apprenticeships

Gatsby Benchmarks 3 and 4


6. Students in Year 12 visit Cardiff University in December. Year 13 attend UK University and Apprenticeship Fair in Bristol and our internal Next Steps evening which include many Universities.  Gloucester College also attend with a wide range of local apprenticeship. All students are encouraged to visit open days and supported to do this.

Gatsby Benchmarks 2, 6 and 7


7. Year 12 have a Work Experience week in July and students can take an additional 5 weeks of WEX during Pathways.

Gatsby Benchmarks 6


8. UCAS advice and guidance is provided through a series on Enrichment Afternoons, workshops at the University Fair Bristol, Uniforg and Academic Mentoring.

Gatsby Benchmarks 3 and 7


9. Student Finance talk during Spring term as well as Money for life Enrichment provided by Barclays

Gatsby Benchmarks 2 and 8


10. All students create a first draft of a personal statement during Summer enrichment using Unifrog.

Gatsby Benchmarks 3, 4 and 7


11. Academic mentoring takes place during Form times and mentors students through the university application process or job or training applications.

Gatsby Benchmarks 3, 4 and 8


The Gatsby Benchmarks


The Gatsby Benchmarks are part of a report, 'Good Career Guidance', published by the Gatsby Foundation in 2014. The 8 Benchmarks were issued in 2014 after visits to schools in the UK and across the world to determine what makes 'good' careers guidance.

The Gatsby Benchmarks

A stable careers programme
Every school and college should have an embedded programme of career education and guidance that is known and understood by students, parents, and teachers.
Learning from career and labour market information
Every student, and their parents, should have access to good quality information about future study options and labour market opportunities. 
Addressing the needs of each student
Students have different career guidance needs at different stages. Opportunities for advice and support need to be tailored to the needs of each student. 
Linking curriculum learning to careers
All teachers should link curriculum learning with careers. 
Encounters with employers and employees
Every student should have multiple opportunities to learn from employers about work, employment and the skills that are valued in the workplace. 
Experiences of workplaces
Every student should have first-hand experiences of the workplace through work visits, work shadowing and/or work experience. 
Encounters with further and higher education
All students should understand the full range of learning opportunities that are available to them. This includes both academic and vocational routes and learning in schools, colleges, universities and in the workplace. 
Personal guidance
Every student should have opportunities for guidance interviews with a career adviser. These should be available whenever significant study or career choices are being made. 



For more information on careers, please email our schools Careers Leader Mrs