Statutory Guidance will place a clear expectation on schools to offer face to face careers guidance to disadvantaged pupils


Lord Hill conceded in the Lords recently, during the passage of the Education Bill, (which has just received Royal Assent), the need for face to face professional careers guidance for disadvantaged pupils. This was confirmed in an answer from Nick Gibb, the schools minister, to a PQ on 8 November ‘ ‘The Government recognises that many young people can benefit from a face-to-face discussion of their skills, abilities and interests to help them think through future education and career options. We will highlight this important issue to schools through statutory guidance in advance of the new duty to secure access to independent careers guidance commencing in September 2012, subject to the passage of the Education Bill. The guidance will place a clear expectation on schools that they should secure face-to-face careers guidance where it is the most suitable support, particularly for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.’…

Ministers appear to have got the message, albeit pretty late in the day ,that the more disadvantaged the pupil  is ,the more mentoring support  and good  face to face , independent professional advice and guidance they  will need  to help them make the appropriate choices   for qualifications, and  to identify the best pathways into training , higher education and work, and the earlier they have this the better .Whether Statutory Guidance makes this happen, in schools , remains to be seen.  With record rates of youth unemployment just announced   this issue  now has a much larger signature on Ministers  radar.

Hansard 8 November  PQ


John Hayes, Minister for Skills, announced on 3 November, at the ICG conference,   that in the New Year he intends to establish a National Council for the Careers Service. Addressing delegates concerns that online and telephone services will replace face to face guidance, he said: “I share the view that face to face guidance is crucial, but I don’t make light of [the importance of] online and telephone advice. However, I do understand that face to face advice marks the difference between information and advice, particularly for those with no access to social networks.”  The new National Careers Service launches in April 2012 .The careers sector is currently leading the development of new professional standards to which careers advisers can aspire. The Careers Profession Alliance is working to agree those standards by next year, A revised matrix Standard  was also launched last month.  The new model will transfer the responsibility (in 2012) for career information advice and guidance from local authorities to schools. Schools will have a duty to secure access to these services – which must be independent and impartial – for pupils in years 9, 10 and 11.