Uplands School

Uplands School
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Careers Programme

Introduction

At Uplands School we are committed to providing all our students with a comprehensive programme of careers education, information, advice and guidance (CEIAG) and work related learning. Uplands sits within the wider Brunel SEN Multi Academy Trust (MAT) and, for the purpose of Careers Education, will work collaboratively, where appropriate, with partner provisions such as Horizons College and Churchward School, both of which are also SEN providers.

As an SEN school we take a needs led, personalised approach to CEIAG where the term ‘Careers’ is viewed holistically.  Career related goals may come in different guises for young people with complex learning difficulties but they are all equally valid to the individual and their family.  Whilst expectations are exceptionally high at Uplands, the perception, methodology and delivery of ‘Careers’ may differ to that on offer in a mainstream setting, as detailed by Talentino in a research article ‘Same and Different’ (2016).

The Careers and Development Institute states that ‘Careers, employability and enterprise education’ is an umbrella term to denote a range of activities and processes that can support the choices made by young people. In the context of supporting choices, it is essential that information, advice and guidance (IAG) for young people is impartial and student centred. IAG activities may include assessing, informing, advising, guiding, counselling, supporting, enabling, coaching, mentoring, advocating, referring and feeding back to learning and support systems. IAG interactions with young people usually work through a process of assessment, planning, implementation and review.

The main statutory guidance related to Careers in schools is currently the Careers Guidance and Access for Education and Training Providers (2018) alongside The Gatsby Benchmarks, neither of which focus on Careers Education for SEN schools. The Careers Development Institute has developed a SEND version of the national framework which we will measure ourselves against.   Our programme will be differentiated to meet the needs of our student group. Similarly in our response to The Gatsby Benchmarks, available on the website, we will interpret and differentiate in order to meet the needs of our students.

Careers, Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs) and The SEN Code of Practice

As an SEN school we are governed ultimately by The Department for Education SEND Code of Practice 2015. This key document states that it is important that young people start to think about their aspirations as early as possible and that, from year 9 at the latest, there is help to start planning for a successful transition to adulthood. This includes setting challenging and ambitious outcomes and exploring further education or training that will enable young people to secure paid work and other opportunities for a positive adult life.

For students with more complex needs, a coordinated assessment process or Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP), which can continue up to the age of 25, can help set out goals and support needs in relation to the four areas of Preparing for Adulthood:

  • Moving into paid employment and higher education
  • Independent living
  • Having friends and relationships and being part of the community
  • Being as healthy as possible

All students attending Uplands will have an EHCP and a yearly review of this plan.  All students will have long term outcomes that are relevant for further education/work, independent living, community and relationships and good health. Long term outcomes will be reviewed at the end of each key stage or earlier if achieved or change is required.

An enormous range of career related activity takes place leading up to an Annual Review, including: gaining the student views about their future, enabling their full contribution to the review itself, reviewing career related outcomes and yearly targets and working with families and a network of professionals to ensure career guidance is relevant, impartial and based student aspirations and long term outcomes.

The aims of CEIAG are the same for all young people: independent living and working, choice, hope and optimism, adaptability and resilience, access to and engagement in decent work in all its forms (personal, gift and paid work), opportunities to learn and make progress, and the pursuit of wellbeing and happiness.

Where the differences lie for young people with SEND is in how they need to learn, their priorities within that learning, how far they can get, at what rate they can progress and the willingness of the businesses and people around them to accommodate their needs.

Careers Advice and Key Roles

As our Careers Programme is approached in such a holistic manner and often embedded into the wider curriculum, all adults in the school are involved in the planning, delivery and implementation of the programme to some degree. This may include class teachers and teaching assistants and members of the Transitions Team.

As previously mentioned, careers advice may take many forms and look very different for each student. The advice and guidance may therefore require a different set of knowledge and skills to that of the ‘traditional’ and mainstream model usually provided. The needs of the student population at Uplands are such that, in most cases, advice and guidance would be most beneficial when delivered by a trusted and very familiar adult and delivered in a manner most suited to their needs, in most cases a class teacher or the dedicated transitions team. This multi-disciplinary approach also provides the impartiality required as all parties working with and on behalf of the student and family are able to contribute.

There are key roles carried out by the following people:

Name School Role Careers Role
Fiona Clark Headteacher Careers Advisor
Sharon Clift Assistant Head and Head of
Sixth Form and Transitions
Careers Lead: To oversee and implement the strategic planning of the Careers Programme at Uplands School
Jenny Wilson Work Related Learning
Lead
Planning and Delivery of Work Experience and Work Related Learning

Access to all the above can be gained through the school office, contact details on the Uplands School website, in the first instance.

A wide range of additional professionals will be involved in supporting students and their families including, but not limited to: Advisory Teachers, Social Workers, Link Workers, Health Professionals and staff working in our local work related provisions such as the school charity shops.

Contact: Sharon Clift

Contact Telephone: 01793 493910

Email: sclift@brunelsenmat.org.uk

Useful Links

 The SEND Gatsby Benchmark Toolkit