Careers Information Advice and Guidance Policy

Policy statement 

All learners and clients within Newcastle City Learning have an entitlement and equal opportunity to receive impartial and confidential information, advice and guidance in order to: 

•    Be able to make informed decisions about their learning and development
•    Explore or plan short,medium-or long term work, learning or career objectives
•    Have the knowledge to take the next step or progression in their learning or development
•    Promote social, physical and mental wellbeing

 Quality standards 

•    Newcastle City Learning will clearly define what IAG and careers advice is and how it can be accessed 
•    Learners/clients have an entitlement to ask for IAG and careers advice at any time and are informed of this entitlement 
•    All learners/clients will receive equal access to IAG products and services 
•    Newcastle City Learning will implement the Gatsby benchmarks for colleges (see appendix A for details of the benchmarks) 
•    All learners/clients will be allocated a named contact who will either directly provide IAG or careers advice or *signpost learners to another, more appropriate/specialist, service or advisor. 
•     IAG and careers guidance will be provided by staff with the relevant skills, knowledge and understanding.  All front-line staff involved in IAG and careers guidance must hold or be working towards a minimum of a Level 2 qualification in IAG 
•     IAG will be provided to learners at strategic points throughout their learner journey and as a minimum before enrolment, at the start of their programme, while on programme and at the end of their programme 
•    IAG will be confidential, recorded on an appropriate course enquiry form and shared only with Newcastle City Learning personnel who will further support the learner/client. This will be done only with the permission and full knowledge of the learner/client**/***. 
•    The service will quality assure its IAG and careers guidance processes against the Matrix standard to ensure that it meets or exceeds the standards set out in the Matrix criteria. 
•    All enquiries for IAG and careers guidance will be responded to within 1 working day. 
•    All staff will be have an observation at least once per year when delivering IAG and careers guidance to learners, this will be recorded in line with NCL observation policy 

*Where learners need to be signposted to other personnel/services, it is the responsibility of Newcastle City Learning staff to facilitate this rather than place the responsibility on the learner. 
**If you are under the age of 18 years your parent or guardian may be involved in the process – where this is the case we will consult/inform you. 
***Where information provided is thought to cause possible harm to the client or others it may be necessary to disclose this to a third party – where this is thought necessary we will consult/inform you. 


Appendix 1 – The Gatsby Benchmarks for Colleges 

1.    A stable careers programme

•    Every college should have an embedded programme of career education and guidance that is known and understood by learners, parents, teachers, employers and other agencies. 
•    Every college should have a stable, structured careers programme that has the explicit backing of the senior management team and has an identified and appropriately trained person responsible for it. 
•    The careers programme should be published on the college’s website in a way that enables learners, parents, college staff and employers to access and understand it. 
•    The programme should be regularly evaluated, with feedback from learners, parents, college staff and employers as part of the evaluation process. 

2.    Learning from career and labour market information

Every learner, and their parents (where appropriate), should have access to good quality information about future study options and labour market opportunities. They will need the support of an informed adviser to make best use of available information. 
•    During their study programme, all learners should access and use information about career paths and the labour market to inform their own decisions on study options. 
•    Parents should be encouraged to access and use information about labour markets and future study options to inform their support to the learners in their care. 

3.    Addressing the needs of each student

Learners have different career guidance needs at different stages. 
Opportunities for advice and support need to be tailored to the needs of each learner. A college’s    careers programme should embed equality and diversity considerations throughout. 
•    A college’s careers programme should actively seek to challenge stereotypical thinking and raise aspirations. 
•    Colleges should keep systematic records of the individual advice given to each learner, and subsequent agreed decisions. 
•    The records of advice given should be integrated with those given at the previous stage of the learner’s education (including their secondary school) where these are made available. Records should begin to be kept from the first point of contact or from the point of transition. 
•    All learners should have access to these records to support their career development. Colleges should collect and maintain accurate data for each learner on their education, training or employment destinations. 


4.   Linking curriculum learning to careers

All subject staff should link curriculum learning with careers, even on courses which are not specifically occupation led. For example, STEM subject staff should highlight the relevance of STEM subjects for a wide range of future career paths. Study programmes should also reflect the importance of maths and English as a key expectation from employers. 
•    Throughout their programme of study (and by the end of their course) every learner should have had the opportunity to experience how their subjects help people gain entry to (and be more effective workers within) a wide range of occupations


5.   Encounters with employers and employees


Every learner should have multiple opportunities to learn from employers about work, employment and the skills that are valued in the workplace. This can be through a range of enrichment activities, including visiting speakers, mentoring and enterprise schemes, and should include learners’ own part-time employment where it exists. 

•    Every year, alongside their study programme, learners should participate in at least two meaningful encounters*1 with an employer. At least one encounter should be delivered through their curriculum area. 
•    Colleges should record and take account of learners’ own part-time employment and the influence this has had on their development. 


6.    Experiences of workplaces

Every learner should have first-hand experiences of the workplace through work  
visits, work shadowing and/or work experience to help their exploration of career opportunities, and expand their networks. 
•    By the end of their study programme, every learner should have had at least one experience of a workplace, additional to any part-time jobs they may have. 

7.   Encounters with Further and Higher Education

All learners should understand the full range of learning opportunities that are available to them. This includes both academic and vocational routes, and learning in schools, colleges, universities and in the workplace. 
•    By the end of their programme of study, every learner should have had a meaningful encounter*2 with a range of providers of learning and training that may form the next stage of their career. This should include, as appropriate, further education colleges, higher education and apprenticeship and training providers. This should include the opportunity to meet both staff and learners. 

8.    Personal Guidance

Every learner should have opportunities for guidance interviews with a career adviser, who could be internal (a member of college staff) or external, provided they are trained to an appropriate level. *3 These should be available for all learners whenever significant study or career choices are being made. They should be expected for all learners but should be timed to meet individual needs. 
Every learner should have at least one such interview by the end of their study programme. 
Learners will be informed of this entitlement via a range of methods, including the Newcastle City Learning website, and in the learner handbook. The entitlement will be embedded into learner induction and will be included throughout learning programmes.