At Thomas Estley Community College we are passionate about supporting students through the process of deciding upon the direction they take after finishing school. We provide impartial guidance and advice on further education, training or employment across KS3 and KS4 and involve many outside agencies such as employers and education providers.
Our Careers Team comprises
Or call 01455 283263 and ask for Mrs Bryan
Meet our alumni
We will share former students journey into the world of work or their next steps in education or training. We are very proud of our alumni and that many give time to come back and talk to our students.
Are you a former student from our school? We’d love to hear your story and perhaps feature you on our website or invite you to call back to our school and talk about your career pathway. There are lots of ways to do this but have a look at our Employer Area for some ideas and do get in touch!
Leicestershire's Labour Market
We think Leicester and Leicestershire is an amazing place to live and work. As one of the most vibrant areas in the East Midlands there is a lot to shout about. In this section we will start to share information about different industry sectors, careers pathways, types of jobs and lots more for both parents/carers and students.
Quick fact… did you know in Leicester and Leicestershire over 99% of local businesses are micro (0-9 staff), small (10-49 staff) or medium enterprises (who employ 50 to 249 staff). If that sounds interesting, you could visit the World of Work website which has much more information on the local labour market with easy-to-read facts and figures.
We run lots of inspirational events for our students
From Year 7 onwards students get lots of opportunities to think about what their next best steps will be. As part of this we will be shining a spotlight on events we put on with guest speakers from the world of work and education. We will share the impact this can have on helping our students think about their futures and what has inspired their careers education journey so far.
The Careers Programme
The careers programme at Thomas Estley stretches across your time with us and is designed to excite and engage whilst equipping you with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed beyond your GCSEs.
Some of the career-related activities you will take part in include:
PS16 provides information and advice to students, parents and teachers about different opportunities, post-16 education and training. You can search for and apply to a range of courses, including A-levels, Apprenticeships, Traineeships, and supported internships. It is the online application system for post-16 learning. It is a central interface where you can manage and track your applications to post-16 providers.
Knowing what to do can be tough so PS16 have lots of information and advice available on www.ps16.co.uk to help you get started. There are lots of videos and support pages for students and parents. Students can find career ideas, and find out what their post-16 options are.
Each student has a username and password. DO NOT self-register - it is vital that students use the account that has been set up by Thomas Estley to enable us to support you in the process. If you have lost/forgotten your login username or password, please email Mrs Bryan (Careers Lead) on email@example.com who will be able to reset this for you.
PS16 Mentors – Each Year 11 student will be allocated a PS16 Mentor, normally their tutor, who will support and offer guidance to enable them to complete PS16 effectively. They will also write a reference.
Supporting you in getting to know and understand the value you bring to post-16 learning and the work place is at the forefront of our careers provision. An understanding of post-16 pathways and qualifications will help you to make the decisions and choices about what learning pathway is best fit for you.
It is essential that students continue to commit to their studies throughout their time at Thomas Estley to achieve their full academic potential, but it is equally important that you secure the most appropriate training, apprenticeship or college placement for your post-16 learning pathway.
A-levels are subject-based qualifications that can lead to university, further study, training, or work. You can normally study three or more A-levels over two years. They are usually assessed by a series of examinations.
What grades do I need to take A-levels?
You normally need:
Who are they for?
If you’re thinking about going to university, most higher education courses require specific A-levels or combinations of A-levels (or alternative level 3 qualifications).
If you’re not sure what career or job you want to do, studying a selection of A-levels can be a good way of keeping your options open.
Choosing A-level subjects
The most important criteria for choosing A-levels subjects are:
Useful link to find out more: https://www.ucas.com/ucas/16-18-choices/search-and-apply/qualifications-you-can-take/levels
Vocational courses are described as a more hands-on approach to learning. Vocational qualifications offer practical learning programmes that relate to specific job roles or employment sectors.
There are many different types of vocational qualifications in a wide range of subjects at all levels, from Entry Level right up to Level 8.
Vocational qualifications include:
Where can vocational qualifications lead?
Vocational qualifications have been designed in partnership with employers, universities and professional or trade organisations – this means that you can develop the skills that employers want. You can also acquire the knowledge needed to progress to a higher level – such as a degree level course. Often employers encourage their employees to gain vocational qualifications whilst at work.
Vocational qualification levels can be compared to other qualifications. Entry Level qualifications build confidence and help people prepare for further learning and work. Level 2 qualifications are the equivalent of GCSE grades grades 9 to 4 in the new GCSE grading system and Level 3 qualifications are equivalent to A levels. Level 4 and 5 are equivalent to a Foundation Degree and Level 6 equivalent to an honours degree
BTECS and NVQs are vocational courses. A BTEC Extended Diploma is the equivalent to 3 x A-levels.
Apprenticeships are a valid choice after Year 11 and 13 for many students. We therefore will allow access to a wide range of apprenticeship and training providers so that you are fully informed of the full range or opportunities available.
All students interested in apprenticeship will need to let Miss Colquhoun, Careers Lead, or Sam White, our careers adviser know as we will be delivering sessions to help you become work ready. In these sessions we will support you to; create your CV, research vacancies, build your professional network, complete effective applications and prepare for interviews.
Students will be notified of these sessions and letters will be sent home via ParentMail. Attendance is strongly encouraged. The first sessions commence on Thursday 2nd November.
National Apprenticeship Service
For students to search vacancies and creating an account
Find out more about apprenticeships
For increasing knowledge and understanding for UCAS mentors
Leicester City Council
For vacancies and links to the Apprenticeship Hub - a broker for young people
Helpful labour market information
What do you think of our careers provision? We are always striving to provide our students with opportunities to develop well-rounded individuals who are prepared for life after Thomas Estley Community College. We value all feedback or suggestions from students, parents, staff, governors, employers/employees and would love to hear from you. Get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org .
How the school measures and assesses the impact of the careers programme on pupils
Thomas Estley Community College works closely with the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership (LLEP) Careers Hub. This is an external organisation that supports us to develop and strengthen our careers education strategy across the whole school. Thomas Estley Community College is a member of the LLEP Careers Hub.
At Thomas Estley Community College we use the 8 Gatsby Benchmarks and the Careers Development Institute framework as a foundation when planning our careers programme. The effectiveness of our provision is reviewed by the LLEP and the Careers and Enterprise Company using the Compass Plus online evaluation tool. This tool is used by schools and colleges in England to support the analysis and evaluation of careers activity against the eight benchmarks of best practice. It ensures that the development of our careers strategy is ongoing. We will benchmark our schools against the Gatsby Benchmarks once per term.
Why we evaluate – This careers programme is evaluated every year to assess its efficacy and areas for improvement. Key stakeholders (students, parents, teachers and employers) provide feedback on their participation in activities via questionnaires, surveys and focus groups throughout the year. We use the evidence collected to inform continuous improvement of the programme.
How we evaluate – Thomas Estley have recruited an evaluation stakeholder group, whose purpose it is to provide a well-balanced view on the quality of the careers offer to students. The group is chaired by the school’s Enterprise Adviser (senior business volunteer). They meet once per year to review the evidence collected during the school year and consider their subjective experience and engagement with the programme. The Careers Leader creates an evidence pack for members of the group in advance of the annual evaluation meeting.
The school Careers Leader combines their own knowledge, evidence and information with that from the stakeholder group and provides a short report with recommendations to SLT, towards the end of the summer term.
What we evaluate
Stakeholder Feedback – We review samples of stakeholder feedback collected using various methods after activities, events and experiences.
Implementation – We review what was actually delivered against the programme of planned activity and how well it went.
Impact – We measure key performance indicators linked directly to our vision and desired outcomes for our students.