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Designing a progressive career curriculum; from Early Years to Year 6

Staff at Fellside Community Primary School used the new adapted primary benchmarks as a framework to develop a new, long-term, career curriculum for the school.

Having initially consulted staff members, who were able to share knowledge of their year group, topics and subjects, Fellside Community Primary School recognised it needed additional expertise from people in the community to help promote careers education in the school. It reached out to family members, parents, governors and visitors to help develop its new long-term overview for careers.

It began by collating details of all the careers related learning delivered in each year group on an annual basis. The school then used this information to think about what experiences it would like to offer students and how it could support careers learning as part of its topics and curriculum subjects.

This piece of work helped lay the foundations for the long-term careers plan. In consultation with staff, the plan was developed to better suit the classroom environment and opportunities became more challenging and progressive across each key phase.

Establishing links with the curriculum

School visits were introduced to ensure each topic across each year group benefitted from careers learning. These were supported by classroom-based activities and school assemblies. Using the long-term careers plan, the school was able to ensure each and every class took part in this valuable careers experience.

Fellside Community Primary School also considered how assembly themes and whole school activities could influence the curriculum. This piece of work completed its comprehensive and impactful careers curriculum overview for the school.

Top tips for success:

  • Involving staff from the outset has been paramount to the success of the implementation of the programme.
  • Ensuring staff buy-in to create enthusiasm for the project.
  • Carrying out an annual review to ensure the plan still meets the needs of the school.

Three biggest challenges:

  • Being selective about which sectors of industry to introduce to pupils.
  • Ensuring careers education activities are age related, e.g. books, stories, characters and roleplay for nursery, to more intensive projects working with universities and businesses in upper key stage 2.

What next?

Fellside Community Primary School is looking to establish links with its feeder school to improve transition for its students and ensure its careers programme supports learning in secondary school too.

It also plans to regularly review its career learning programme to ensure it is imbedded in each year group.

For more details contact Ruth Thornber, Phase Leader, English, Computing and Careers Lead, on [email protected].