The Sherborne School Careers Department is the first port of call for the inquisitive and ambitious. It’s a place where boys can explore different industries and roles, and learn about the skills, capabilities, and qualifications needed for a successful working life. Boys benefit immensely from the knowledge, support, and encouragement that the Old Shirburnian Society provides which has over 6,000 active members to date, who cover the globe and a vast array of industries.
The Sherborne Careers Programme starts in the Third Form with an introduction to Unifrog, our preferred careers software programme. In Fourth Form pupils are on a path to self–awareness: testing of their aptitudes, interests, and personality along with the introduction of industry-leading research tools for school-age children to help broaden their worldview. The use of these tools leads to initial conversations about what interests and ambitions they would like to investigate.
In the Fifth Form we help our pupils to become ‘work experience ready’ by looking at professional skills; teaching them about different job roles and industries; building a CV and how to write a cover letter. They meet a member of the Careers Team to discuss the next steps for their career exploration journey. We are strong advocates of work experience and encourage our Fifth Form pupils to explore as many careers and industries in real-life situations as possible.
In the Sixth Form, our pupils delve deeper, exploring various career-related topics including:
- Degree Apprenticeships
- Getting work experience
- Gap Years
- Building a CV
- Preparing for and attending interviews
The Lower Sixth Careers Convention brings together alumni in a wide range of roles and industries who talk to the boys about what their jobs entail and advise the boys on how to navigate a successful start into industry. Last year the boys chose from 24 live industry seminars with panels of three Old Shirburnians in each seminar. The seminars were also recorded and hosted on a platform for the boys to re-watch at their leisure.
Thanks to our extensive professional networks, we have helped boys secure valuable placements with companies such as record labels, well-known accountancy companies, conservation organisations, and much more. Many of our boys also use their contacts to build work experience, and we draw on the Old Shirburnian Society to offer mentoring, career guidance, and support to existing pupils.
Mrs Zoe Fraser: Careers Manager
Zoe leads the School’s careers provision, including delivery of careers advice, events and experiences for pupils, also working in close partnership with the Old Shirburnian Society.
In 2013, Gatsby commissioned Sir John Holman to set out what career guidance in England would be like if it were good by international standards, resulting in the Good Career Guidance report. The eight benchmarks set out in the report serve as a framework for improvement in careers provision and have been adopted as part of the Government's Careers Strategy and statutory guidance for schools and colleges.
1. A stable career programme
We have a Careers Leader in post with Assistant Head (Sixth Form) taking overall responsibility for the programme. In addition to the team of five staff with focuses on Careers; UCAS; Specialist Higher Education and Overseas Higher Education we have nine further staff who have time allocated to implementing the programme both to small groups and on a one to one basis.
The programme, which is published on our website is reviewed termly with evaluations from parents and pupils on an ongoing basis. Key information and useful links can be found in the careers section of the school website.
2. Learning from career and labour market information
A Careers information platform is introduced to all pupils in Third Form. Pupils can Explore how interests lead to different education and training pathways. See what steps need to be ticked off to stand the best chance of application success. Study expert guides explaining how to navigate each step in the application process. Use MOOCs to try out different subject areas. We produce a weekly bulletin that goes to Fifth Form upwards and all the relevant tutors. Our parents are informed about key careers information and events.
3. Addressing the needs of each pupil
The Careers team carry out one to one interviews with all Fifth Form and Lower Sixth as they prepare for the world of work and the next stages in their education and career journey. In addition to this, the careers team operates an online booking system for pupils to book appointments for one to one career advice and help.
Pupils are enabled to build a higher education and career profile on Unifrog where they can also add competencies and achievements to draw upon when writing CV’s and personal statements.
4. Linking curriculum learning to careers
Heads of Department complete a Careers Audit to track careers in the curriculum with the Careers department supporting them with subject specific careers material on an ad hoc basis.
Pupils are educated about subject specific Degree Apprenticeships within the curriculum, especially STEM subjects.
5. Encounters with employers and employees
All our pupils have opportunities to meet employers at numerous events such as Professional speaker programmes, lunchtime – ‘Meet the Professional series’, OS talks and our annual Lower Sixth Careers Conference where we bring together up to 80 professionals from the OS network to talk and answer questions on 24 different industries and the roles within that.
6. Experience of workplaces
We advertise both unpaid, paid and paid for placements in our weekly bulletin. Through available channels we communicate to parents and pupils the need to get a work experience placement in the summer after Fifth Form and Lower Sixth.
In the Sixth Form, we have a carousel of lessons on the ‘mock job' application process as well as advertising work experience opportunities that are exclusively available to our pupils.
7. Encounters with further and higher education
All our pupils have access to open days, UCAS events and exhibitions. There is an objective overview of Degree Apprenticeships opportunities delivered by the Careers team with a follow up event for those interested and 1:1 guidance.
8. Personal guidance
Personal guidance is delivered throughout the School via the tutoring programme. Pupils can access personal guidance from the Higher Education and Careers team through the online booking system, which is advertised to them weekly via the Higher Education and Careers bulletin.
Parents are welcome to contact the careers department to discuss their pupil’s progression at any time.
Zoe Fraser: 01935 810 513
A Parent’s Guide to Apprenticeships & Degree Apprenticeships
A Parent’s Guide to Virtual Work Experience
A Parent’s Guide to Careers
Morrisby Explained for Parents and Guardians
Sherborne Connect – As a Sherborne parent you can access our award winning alumni networking platform to reach out to Old Shirburnians all over the world to facilitate advice from them about a career, industry or even work experience.
Unifrog – our chosen careers platform
Unifrog brings into one place information on careers, universities, apprenticeships, school-leaver programmes and online learning opportunities such as MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses). The platform also makes it easy for students to write their CVs and Personal Statements and record their key activities and competencies. Sherborne Parents receive a code so they can access the site and take advantage of the search tools.
All pupils will take the Morrisby Careers questionnaire, which is a series of aptitude and psychometric questions. The product is a report which will then form part of early discussions regarding Sixth Form choices; routes after school and beyond.
At Sherborne School we encourage all pupils to seek work experience placements during the holidays. As well as benefitting from the insight and experience, we would hope that all pupils undertaking such placements would seek to add value to any organisation during their time there.
We advertise work experience opportunities on a weekly basis and would be grateful for any potential employers to contact us regarding vacancies. Please contact [email protected]
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