Skip to main content

Secondary Education: Vocational Guidance

Volume 485: debated on Wednesday 17 December 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) how many secondary schools have a specialist full-time careers adviser attached to their staff; (243336)

(2) how many secondary schools have no specialised careers service or careers adviser;

(3) how many secondary schools have staff employed to teach specific subjects and to act as a careers adviser;

(4) how many secondary schools have a part-time careers adviser attached to their staff;

(5) how many teachers are employed in a dual role as a teacher and a careers adviser;

(6) how many hours teachers who provide careers advice must undergo to do so;

(7) what training in careers guidance and progression careers advisers in schools receive prior to starting their job;

(8) what training in careers guidance and progression careers advisers in schools receive during their practice period.

Responsibility for curriculum organisation and staff training is delegated to local authorities and schools. We do not keep records centrally of how careers advice is provided within all schools or about the numbers, or the skills and knowledge, of teaching staff involved in providing careers advice. However, the Secondary School Curriculum and Staffing Survey 2007 shows there are 1,900 teachers delivering at least one period of Careers Education per week. These teachers are also responsible for delivering a wide variety of other subjects of the curriculum.1

1 The Secondary School Curriculum and Staffing Survey (SSCSS) is an occasional survey that has been carried out every four to six years since 1965. The 2007 survey was carried out by the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER).

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the status of specialist careers guidance in secondary schools is; and if he will make a statement. (243344)

Specialist careers guidance is provided by Connexions services who work in partnership with schools to ensure that young people are supported to make decisions about learning and careers that best meet their needs. Partnership agreements between schools and Connexions set out local arrangements for how the partners will work together.

All maintained schools have a statutory duty to provide a planned programme of careers education from years 7-11. This is delivered principally within the new PSHE: Economic Well Being curriculum. But schools also embed information about learning and careers into other subject teaching and provide additional, personalised support through a range of learning and pastoral support arrangements.

The Government’s 14-19 reform programme places considerable emphasis on the importance of all young people receiving high quality, comprehensive and impartial information, advice and guidance on learning and careers. We will be publishing, in spring 2009, our strategy for further improving the provision of help and advice on learning and careers to young people.

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what his policy is on teachers acting as careers advisers; and if he will make a statement. (243345)

If a teacher is called upon to provide advice on learning and careers in the delivery of his/her day-to-day duties, they should consider their competence to respond and offer advice as appropriate. If necessary, they should refer the young person to specialist advisers for an answer.