Careers and Next Steps

Abbot’s Hill is an ambitious school. The ambition rubs off on you, and when you leave our school at the end of Year 11 you will –  more than anything – believe in yourself. This is a big moment in your life, and for many people it’s a good time for a change, we don’t have a sixth form, and that brings with it some really interesting ideas and opportunities for our pupils.

Career progression forms an integral part of both the school curriculum and pastoral system. Time is allocated across all stages of the curriculum, and whilst co-ordinated by the Careers department, teaching staff and tutors are actively involved in careers work.

Year 7 – 9

The School introduces Careers Education in Year 7, where the focus is around self awareness and skills development. At this stage, pupils develop their language of skills and how these may be progressed through clubs, volunteering and leadership roles.

Year 8 pupils undertake the Morrisby Aspirations questionnaire, forming the basis of an individual profile that is developed throughout their time at Abbot’s Hill and beyond. We also participate in the national ‘Take Your Daughter to Work Day’ scheme to gain first insights into professional environments.

GCSE subjects and courses are discussed in Year 9, and care is given to ensure that the selection of subjects retains an open career choice. Pupils and parents are regularly guided to sources of information on the qualities and qualifications required in a broad range of careers, including recognised websites and the well-stocked Careers Room.

Year 10 and looking beyond GCSEs

In Year 10, we begin to prepare for post GCSE opportunities. We host a Sixth Form Forum, where a wide range of schools and colleges are invited to present information to prospective pupils. This is an invaluable event where pupils and parents have the chance to speak directly with representatives of the different organisations. The Post-16 Information Evening also provides an opportunity for parents and pupils to discover more about options after GCSEs, including A levels, the local consortium, ‘new’ subjects, alternative qualifications and apprenticeships.

Year 10 pupils are encouraged to explore a wide-range of career possibilities through career clinics and talks held within PSHCEE lessons and also at lunchtimes or after school; they receive regular visits from working people talking about their careers and giving independent and impartial information and advice. This includes parents, alumni and industry representatives. Year 10 gains skills in writing applications and CVs. Every pupil has the opportunity of at least one interview with an external career professional and the Head of Careers. Full Morrisby profiling also takes place in Year 10.

Important decisions concerning next steps and future careers are made in Year 11; the transition from school to further education can be a daunting prospect, but our pupils are equipped with the skills and knowledge required to feel confident in their choices. A work experience scheme for all Year 11 pupils is in operation. The school runs various events throughout the year providing parents and pupils with the opportunity to get more post-16 information from external as well as internal speakers. In addition, Year 11 also enjoys a series of careers clinics and talks with education and industry representatives.

The Careers Room

The school has a fully equipped Careers Room that is updated regularly. This includes prospectuses for popular maintained and independent schools, colleges and universities. Books about job applications, CVs and letters of application are provided, as well as extensive resources on a vast range of careers. The school also has several careers computer packages and Apps that can be accessed by all pupils.

Careers Events

Careers Fair

The Careers Fair is a highlight in the school calendar, with a wide range of professionals in attendance to discuss their careers and educational pathways. Workshops and talks run alongside a bustling exhibition hall.

Sixth Form Forum

A Sixth Form Forum is held in the Autumn Term with both Year 10 and 11 pupils, and their families, invited to attend.

Abbot’s Hill pupils have in recent years progressed to Sixth Form institutions which offer a variety of settings and courses: single-sex, co-educational, independent, maintained, Sixth Form Colleges, boarding, day, academic, specialist or vocational. The range of post GCSE courses available is also varied and whilst many girls will follow A-Level programmes, others may be attracted to the International Baccalaureate or to more applied or vocational options. A range of Schools and Colleges are invited to exhibit at the Sixth Form Forum.