A statement regarding our ethos towards supporting Secondary Students develop an appreciation for the function and purpose of solid GCSE results to support successful Exit Strategy destinations.
At Starbank we believe that education in isolation is limited in potential; that our students learn best when they realise the practical application that underlies our provision, be it curricular or pastoral.
All Starbank Secondary students will participate in our work experience programme during Y9. Whilst this may seem perhaps a little early compared to other schools, this reflects the faith we have in the relative maturity of our students and on the importance we place in real-world experiences: our students should enter GCSEs with an awareness, gained through phronesis, of what life beyond school is like.
We ensure all our students engage for the following reasons:
- Growth comes from challenge; real-world challenge will encourage similar self-development.
- School can be an abstract experience for students; to see how and why their learning is applied within the context of the wider world will contextualise and reinforce efforts within school
- We have high expectations regarding the maturity that our students demonstrate; by placing them in employment at the age of 14, we are providing opportunity for our students to live up to and surpass our expectations
- Real-world experience is vital when considering applications for Exit Destinations into Post 16 education and beyond; it is critical our students have a rich, personalised experience to add in support of their applications
- Learning does not exist in a vacuum – our students should engage in as wide a range of experiences as possible as steps on their individual journey’s towards becoming the leaders of tomorrow.
Points of evaluation
- All potential placements are evaluated through external agencies prior to being offered to students, in order to ensure a safe and suitable working environment for our young people.
- Each placement identifies a designated W/Exp Lead individual who will be the key point of contact with school, home and any concerned agencies as first call.
- All Y9 on placements are visited by a member of Starbank school staff, who will perform a dual task of ascertaining and evaluating their progress from the employer, whilst ensuring the students are gainfully employed, treated fairly and with respect and that the experience is purposeful and positive for all involved.
Below is a detailed schedule of the careful pastoral scaffolding that leads our young people towards their first working experience outside the school environment that they will have experienced in their lives to date; all future Work Experience planning will follow a similar time-line:
Starbank School & ‘Learn to Work’ Year 9 Work Experience Timetable
Year 9 Tutor’s meeting
Pupils Introduction/Launch assembly
Registration – ‘Launch’ paperwork distributed to students
Parents Introduction/Launch talk/Q&A
** Various materials available for delivery in registration if required, covering Vocational Choice, Telephone Skills and Application letter technique and Interview Technique **
Consent and ‘Own Placement’ deadline reminder assembly
‘Own Placement’ deadline
Individual priority ‘Choices’ interviews with SEND Students
Database Introduction/’Choices’ process assembly
Students make their ‘Choices’ using database in IT rooms
All students allocated to placements
Year 9 tutor’s meeting to check allocation
Practice Interview Morning Assembly briefing
Registration – Interview Morning forms handed out
Practice Interview Morning
Pre-Placement Interviews briefing assembly
Registration – Pre-Placement Interview paperwork given out
Pre-placement interview afternoon – off site
Pre-placement final assembly: distribution of log-books, final checks.
Work Experience week – all Y9 out of school on placement
Work Experience success celebration