New all-age careers service to launch in England in 2012

Published on Friday, 05 November 2010 14:19
Posted by Scott Buckler

Skills minister John Hayes set out his vision for the first all-age careers service in England.Both young people aged 13-19 and adults will be able to begin accessing new arrangements for careers guidance from September 2011. The service will be fully operational by April 2012. It will build on the best of Next Step and Connexions and provide a fully joined up service for all age groups for the first time


John Hayes said:

Informed learners are empowered learners. The right guidance at the right time not only helps young people and adults to progress in learning, but also increases their confidence and motivation to succeed. Careers guidance is at the heart of increasing social mobility, and a vital part of the machinery of social justice.”

“I have long argued for the creation of an all-age careers service. A unified, consistent service that offers seamless support to young people as they make the transition to adulthood and have a true focus on lifelong learning.”

The all-age careers service will be founded on the core principles of independence and professionalism.

Schools will be under a legal duty to secure independent, impartial careers guidance for their students, but will be free to decide how best to support young people to make good careers choices.

In response to recommendations of the Careers Progression Task Force, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and the Department for Education will be working closely with advice professionals, schools and colleges on how best to revitalise the professional status of careers guidance. Options under consideration include introducing a new kite mark to recognise the best career guidance services or establishing a register of providers who meet the highest standards.

John Hayes added:

Everyone knows that impartial advice is always the best advice. But that independent advice must also be underpinned by professional expertise.

“I want to re-professionalise the careers service and create an environment in which careers guidance is recognised for the important public good it is, in which young people, adults, schools, colleges, universities and whole communities see its value, use it and invest in it.

“I am calling on the careers sector in England to rise to the challenge of implementing the new all-age careers service.”

John Hayes made the announcement at the Institute of Careers Guidance (ICG) annual conference in Belfast.

Noting that Wales and Scotland have established all-age careers services, he added: “There is no monopoly of wisdom in this area. Events like the ICG conference offer a valuable chance for us to compare experience and learn from the best approaches across the whole of the UK.”

Source: ©BIS

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0 #1 CareersPartnershipUK 2010-11-09 11:39
These are old ideas though good ones ....

What's gone wrong in the past with similar approaches is that few of those in charge of the purse strings realise how expensive it is to provide good careers advice to all those who need it. Every student considering higher education and every career changer trying to leave dying employment sectors needs good career advice, for example.

The kite mark idea offers special difficulties too. The last time this approach was suggested it was framed in ways that suited providers seeing high numbers of clients to whom they offered very little individual careers guidance input. The qualifications required of "suitably trained advisors" are applicable to those working in public sector careers guidance but not to those in organisations providing careers guidance based on one to one psychometric assessment.

This kite mark scheme so irrelevant to our clients' needs would have raised our costs and clients' fees by £20 a head (at today's prices), because we see small numbers of clients to whom we offer at least 4 hours face to face contact time plus detailed, individualised written careers guidance / careers research reports, Helpline assistance etc. I still remember the surprise in an area manager's face when I explained the true costs of the scheme for us and our clients.

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