Vocational Guidance

Department for Education written question – answered at on 21 March 2024.

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Photo of Rachael Maskell Rachael Maskell Labour/Co-operative, York Central

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps she is taking with career advice services to help ensure that young people leaving school can move into a (a) job and (b) apprenticeship.

Photo of Robert Halfon Robert Halfon Minister of State (Education)

In October 2023, the department launched a new website called Skills for Careers that provides a single digital front door to information about skills training options and careers. From Skills for Careers, users are guided through government’s skills offer from apprenticeships to Skills Bootcamps, A levels to Multiply. The website provides an overview of each option, along with information about writing job applications and CVs. The Skill for Life website can be found here: https://www.skillsforcareers.education.gov.uk/pages/skills-for-life.

The government has strengthened legislation to ensure all secondary pupils have access to independent and impartial careers guidance, and pupils in years 8-13 have at least six opportunities to hear directly from providers of technical education and apprenticeships.

Since September 2012, schools have had a statutory duty to secure independent careers guidance. For pupils of compulsory school age, this must include information on the full range of 16-18 education and training options, including apprenticeships.

The Careers and Enterprise Company will ensure that Careers Hubs increase young peoples’ exposure to employers and more in-depth workplace experiences. These experiences give young people a real feel for work and the skills they need to succeed.

The National Careers Service provides free, impartial high-quality careers information, advice and guidance. Young people aged 13-18 can access information and advice through the service website and local community-based careers advisers via a web chat service and a telephone helpline.

The Careers Pathway Dashboard allows users to see which are the most popular and best qualifications needed to gain successful employment in a specific sector within a local area. This is a first attempt to create information to support careers advice for young people exploring their career options or starting their career. The Careers Pathway Dashboard can be found here: https://department-for-education.shinyapps.io/education-to-employment-dashboard/.

Careers Leaders work to develop careers programmes that will improve the quality of careers advice in schools and give more aspirational careers advice for children and young people.

The department actively promotes apprenticeships in schools and colleges through the Apprenticeship Support and Knowledge (ASK) programme. During the 2022/23 academic year, ASK engaged over 2,400 schools and colleges, with over 625,000 student engagements and more than 45,000 parent/carer engagements.

Jobcentre Plus school advisers work closely with schools and colleges to support their statutory duty to deliver careers education and guidance, assisting young people to make informed choices about which path they can follow when they leave secondary school or reach 18.

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