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Supporting students to take greater responsibility

Part three of four in our series "Careers Managers are only human - raising the profile of careers in your School"


Developing a proactive culture where pupils take greater responsibility for researching their career options is probably the most challenging part of this agenda.  It involves a change of culture. If students are starting to develop a view that what they are doing will lead them to this area or that area, if they see the connection, it gives them a reason to continue to learn their English, to develop their maths or whatever they need, that there is a purpose for it… then they are more likely to be successful.  There is also the move away from the ‘spoon-fed’ mentality/dependence on certain key individuals within a school.   Careers managers are only human.  It is not your job to know everything, to do the work for students and to make their decisions for them. 

So, how do you empower your students to take greater responsibility and develop their skills for exploring /moving into the world of work?

Supporting teachers to contribute to their students' career education

Part two of four in our series "Careers Managers are only human - raising the profile of careers in your School"


Do your students recognise how what they are learning in the classroom relates to the world of work? 

It is important teachers are aware of their role within your strategy and know how to use appropriate industry knowledge and resources.   Research suggests that young people are likely to approach subject teachers first with their careers questions. This does not mean that every teacher has to become a career specialist, but there is a strong case for encouraging teachers to have a greater awareness about the progression routes from their subject and to think about how they might be used in the world of work. 

Use career education and guidance to enhance school-based curriculum and enrich professional development for staff.  Curriculum learning areas provide rich teaching and learning opportunities for career education. When career topics and concepts are highlighted within regular classroom teaching and learning, students develop their career management skills in meaningful contexts. 

Teachers can consider how a learning module can be adjusted or enlarged to include some relevant career education learning outcomes and how career concepts can be fore-grounded without detracting from their subject-specific aims.  At its best this can inform the curriculum and inspire the creation of both career and subject-based learning opportunities.  

A planned and co-ordinated approach is needed if career education is to be included in the teaching and learning that happens in curriculum learning areas.  Consider the following:

  • how teachers can be assisted to understand the aims and purposes of careers education
  • which career management competencies can be addressed in specific classroom contexts
  • when and how these competencies will be addressed
  • how well the students' needs have been met.

It is hard to do all this alone, so a few suggestions:

Careers Managers are only human - raising the profile of careers in your school

Careers managers are only human…multiple roles, not enough time, increasing workload, budget cuts …sound familiar? Time for things to change?  

This is the first of a four-part blog on raising the profile of careers in your school.


How do you challenge the concept that career education and guidance is the sole responsibility of the careers manager? There are a number of key aspects to consider:

  • establishing careers education and guidance as a whole school responsibility
  • supporting teachers to contribute to their students’ career education
  • supporting students to take greater responsibility
  • engaging parents      

Establishing career education and guidance as a whole-school responsibility

Career education and guidance is most effective when it is an integral part of school life. How do you embed a programme of careers education and guidance that is known and understood by students, parents, governors, teachers and employers? 

It involves significant changes for school managers, careers specialists, form teachers, classroom teachers and the community.  There is no single ‘magic bullet’ – it’s about doing a number of different things consistently and well. 

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School Careers Management: A look at some resources

We thoughts we'd start our blog by sharing some resources in the area of "School Careers Management"

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Careers for School Blog - Ideas, thoughts, news, opinion

Our blog is a place where leaders, careers managers, advisers and teachers can share their thoughts about careers work in schools and colleges.  The main focus is on practical day-to-day issues in your school or college:

  • raising the profile of careers
  • access to resources
  • using online tools and resources to make your job easier
  • developing digital careers literacy skills
  • encouraging young people to become more proactive and develop their independent research skills
  • helping non-specialists deliver the careers agenda
  • engaging parents
  • monitoring and tracking

Our experts will also keep you up-to-date with the reports relating to CEIAG. 

If you would like to contribute to our blog email us at enquires@careersforschools.co.uk