At Thirsk we do all that we can to prepare our students for their future careers. The Careers Education Information Advice and Guidance (CEIAG) programme starts in Year 7, and continues to beyond Year 13. It consists of regular careers lessons, work experience opportunities and trips, drop down days focusing on career pathways, extra-curricular opportunities, and individual interviews for students. All of this is backed up by our use of KUDOS, a piece of careers software which helps guide and support students in meeting their ambitions and aspirations.
Main School Guidance Programme:
Our teaching of careers covers the full recommended range of topics, including transitions, career areas and labour market information, and employability skills and attitudes. Curriculum learning is also increasingly linked to careers through the provision of structured opportunities for students to develop “21st century” work-related skills. The school brings in external speakers, arranges visits, and facilitates some individually-focussed opportunities and placements for Year 10-13 students, tailored to their future educational and career ideas and aspirations. Thirsk School has some very well-established links to local business networks, including our own “Business Friends of Thirsk School” and we continue to look to develop stronger links with a wide range of employers, and our alumni.
As well as employer events we work closely with many local organisations to support the preparation of CVs, mock interviews and other more personalised support.
Work and Other Experiences and Employability
All students are required to undertake work experience placements in Years 10 and 12. We are blessed by the quality of placements available and the excellent support given to the programme by the North Yorkshire Business Education Partnership. Our students almost always earn glowing testimonials and many find the have built relationships with employers that can lead to real opportunities later on
Sixth Form Guidance Programme
Career support is embedded across both years of the Sixth Form experience but is chiefly delivered in the specialised Guidance Programme. This builds a range of experiences that inspire and support the students into a wide range of career opportunities which includes UCAS advice. We have close links to local employers through the “Business Friends of Thirsk School” which enable many of our work placements to become job opportunities or apprenticeships. Our regular monitoring of the apprenticeship website enables students to select a career path that suits them.
Our Guidance Programme doesn’t just cover careers but also involves information on all aspects of health which includes talks from local nurses and sexual health experts. Our driving safety is supported by both the local fire service and drama productions to educate our students on careful driving and the risks associated with alcohol and drugs. When not led by external presenters, our tutors and pastoral team deliver a range of lessons aimed at reducing stress, managing work load and at becoming more effective learners. This is supported throughout the year with the study skill sessions that can become part of the EPQ qualification.
Parents Evenings support this process with a Year 12 Welcome Evening, a Year 13 University Application Evening, and a Post-18 Careers Evening in addition to the subject based Parents Evening. Our team of careers advisors and experienced tutors continue to interview, challenge and support all individuals into the next stage. Career aspirations are tracked from application to the college until the students make the transition to the next step of their career.
The school Careers Library has well-stocked careers information libraries, which contains books, prospectuses, leaflets, supplements, lists, links, and other resources. A variety of online resources are made available. Books on all the main career areas, and on university and other options and applications are available.
Current Job and Apprenticeship Vacancy opportunities are increasingly made available electronically to parents/carers.
Extra-Curricular Information And Trips
An annual programme of careers-related events is offered, which include opportunities to engage with a variety of employers and apprenticeship providers, work experience, university and college talks, careers and apprenticeship fairs, mock interviews, and other opportunities. The programme aims to motivate students by encouraging them to think carefully about their strengths, ambitions and aptitudes and to plan for appropriate progression pathways. On top of this we also run a series of careers related trips, taking groups of students to visit local employers, and find out how the workplace operates.
Following publication of the DfE’s statutory guidance for schools in January, 2018 the school’s CEIAG provision is now benchmarked against current best practice and legislation. We are using eight ‘benchmarks’ in the Gatsby Foundation Report on Good Career Guidance for our benchmarking. We aim to do everything we can to inspire and encourage each of our students to realise their full potential, and have happy and successful working lives. In November 2022 we were recognised by achieving the Careers Mark- a benchmark for effective careers provision in education.
Local Employer's List for Thirsk Area
Mr Lane is our Work Experience Coordinator. After a distinguished career in the military, Ian has ‘retired’ to Thirsk, and brought his considerable experience and professionalism to leading the process of work experience in the school. Mr Lane is responsible for overseeing all of our careers interviews, and for supporting the set up of work experience for Years 10 and 12.
Below is a very useful website which offers you subject careers knowledge and inspiration to help support progress and aspirations. It also includes national labour market information. Please take the time to browse through this with your child.
Mrs Eastwood is Head of Careers, and oversees all of the provision for students from Year 7 to 13 and beyond. She is dedicated to providing as many varied opportunities as possible to every student, regardless of their ambitions and aspirations. Mrs Eastwood teaches in the Art Department and is a keen athlete, as well as a very talented artist in her own right.