This week Teach First launched their manifesto consultation which lays the foundations to make the UK’s education system work better for the most in need. As they quite rightly state, ‘too many children in the UK aren’t getting the education they deserve. But as the country begins to rebuild after COVID-19, our nation has a unique opportunity to break the cycle of generational inequality’.
The manifesto they’re building aims to clearly outline what ‘needs to be done to make our education system work better for the children who need it most’ and they want to hear from you as ‘together our voices could create lasting change for all children – not just some’.
All items on the manifesto are extremely important and highlight the changes that not only are needed but those that are necessary. What is of particular interest to us are the items that surround Careers Education and Work Experience, which are outlined below:
- Careers education: Prioritise careers education at both primary and secondary levels
- Post-pandemic, we face an increasingly competitive jobs market. It’s essential that young people leave school with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed. The eight Gatsby benchmarks set the standard on good careers guidance, but, on average, schools are still only achieving fewer than half of these. To give young people a better chance of achieving their potential, this number must be boosted.
- Train a careers leader in every secondary school at mid-senior level by 2023. Schools in disadvantaged areas should receive full funding for this.
- Publish a framework for effective careers learning in primary schools so that young people don’t rule themselves out of careers at an early age.
- Launch a fund to train primary teachers in disadvantaged areas to implement the framework.
- Work experience: Increase access to work experience through remote placements
- The most effective careers guidance includes experience of the workplace. But, for those who live far from employers in sectors they are interested in, gaining work experience can be almost impossible. Lessons from a year of lockdown should change this for the future. Many top jobs can now be done from any location. While in-person work experience continues to be crucial, online options offer a great opportunity to increase access and diversify workforces.
- Employers should increasingly offer remote work experience and entry level jobs so that young people, wherever they are in the country, can get on the pathway to any profession.
Let them know your thoughts by completing the ‘Have your say‘ form – please do read the full manifesto before completing. We would love to hear what you have to say as well – please comment below or share this piece on your social accounts @ing us where possible.