At Darwen Vale we endeavour to provide our students with skills and experiences that will equip them for their lives ahead. Our careers provision starts right from day one in Year 7 and continues up to and beyond students’ last day in Year 11. We have regular careers activities during form times where students can explore the opportunities open to them. We hold Careers Events where we invite all local Post-16 providers, training organisations as well as local and national organisations, in for students to talk to so that the message about Post 16 opportunities comes from the people that will be delivering it. Our students take part in career orientated workshops during enrichment days also delivered by local employers and colleges. These sessions help to inspire and motivate students which in turn helps to increase aspirations.
Every student is given the opportunity to sample a typical college day prior to deciding which Post-16 provider to apply for. This helps to ensure that students make the right choice for them based on courses, grades and the overall feel of the place.
All our students go through 1 to 1 interviews with people from outside of our school to help them prepare for the life choices they will make about their Post 16 education. This not only helps focus students to make the right choice for them, but also allows students to experience and practice interview techniques before they enter the world of work.
We have staff on hand at all times to offer help and advice about Post-16 providers, apprenticeships and careers. We help students make the choice that suits them best, prepare and take them through the whole application process.
We seek to make pupils aware of how THEY are responsible for their own futures and it is their responsibility to ensure they take advantage of the REAL opportunities that are available to them in school. We strive to create as many opportunities as we can for all of our students and we are able to do this because our links with local Post-16 providers and businesses are strong, and we regularly run trips and visits to enrich student’s experiences relating to careers and their future. We ensure students have the skills that make them “life ready” and are fully prepared for life after school.
From the cohort 2019/2020 over 97% of students went into further education or training. 2% of the cohort were Not in Education, Employment or Training (NEET) which is significantly below the National Average. 97% of students with a Special Educational Need went on to further education or training and 98% of Pupil Premium students also went onto further education or training. All measures are more favourable than National Average figures.
The school measures and assesses the impact of careers programmes on students by conducting student and parent surveys. We assess our progress towards achieving 100% in all 8 Gatsby Benchmarks which are ratified by our Enterprise Co-Ordinator from Inspira. We monitor the short-term NEET figure given by the Local Authority in February of each year which has been below National Average for the last 5 years.
The school reviews the NEET data published by the Local Authority in February of each year as soon as it is published. This relates to the most recent cohort of leavers. The DFE published data giving a more longer-term picture is typically published in October and then revised in February, however the October 2020 data is still yet to be published.
Our careers information is reviewed in July and August and be will available for the next academic year.