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Shirley High School seeks to develop aspirational learners who strive for excellence academically, creatively and culturally, benefiting from a wide range of opportunities led by inspirational educators. We recognise that developing aspirational learners requires the provision of excellent careers education, information, advice and guidance (CEIAG) at all stages of the school journey. 

We believe that good CEIAG connects learning to the future. It motivates young people by giving them a clearer idea of the routes to jobs and careers that they will find engaging and rewarding. Good CEIAG widens pupils’ horizons, challenges stereotypes and raises aspirations. It provides pupils with the knowledge and skills necessary to make successful transitions to the next stage of their life. This supports social mobility by improving opportunities for all young people, especially those from disadvantaged backgrounds and those with special educational needs and disabilities. 

The School has a clear policy on Careers Education, Information and Guidance (CEIAG) that this is clearly communicated to all stakeholders. It is based on the eight Gatsby Benchmarks and meets the school’s legal requirements. Please click here to access this policy. 

The member of staff responsible for Careers is currently Ms Fair (Vice Principal), as Mrs Murawski (Head of Personal Development) is on maternity leave. Ms Fair can be contacted by emailing

Careers Plan

Year 7

Students are introduced to careers in year 7, where they use a range of activities to discover their strengths and interests to develop a positive self-image that provides the foundation for optimistic pathway planning. They develop an awareness of the importance of social and interpersonal skills in their future life and work roles.

Students investigate the contribution of work to the community and family, recognising the role of paid and unpaid work. They focus on understanding issues relating to stereotyping and discrimination through the study of occupational and labour market information. Students build their career action plan on the self-knowledge they have acquired through the activities they have undertaken

Students also take part in various activities during National Careers week, which includes guest speakers from a variety of sectors and a careers roadshow hosted by BAE Systems.

Year 8

Students continue the work started in year 7 on social and interpersonal skills and build on this to explore how self-esteem can have an impact on career aspirations. Students will also investigate LMI and how useful it can be and look in more depth at the 10 main job sectors in the UK.

Students also take part in various activities during National Careers week, which includes guest speakers from a variety of sectors and a careers roadshow hosted by BAE Systems.

Year 9

Through PSHE lessons students build on the work done in year 7 and 8, with particular focus at the start of the year on aspirations for the future. Students are also supported with their option choices during their PD lessons and during tutor time.

Year 9 Options evening is attended by our careers advisor from CER, where she meets individually with parents and students.  Meetings can be arranged at the request of parents, priority will be given to vulnerable students.

Students take part in various activities during National Careers week, which includes guest speakers from a variety of sectors and an introduction to Apprenticeships from Amazing Apprenticeships.

Years 10 and 11

All year 10 students complete a two week period of work experience in July, which plays an important role in raising our student’s aspirations and allowing them to make informed decisions about their future career path.  Students are encouraged to find their own placement, as this enables them to gain real life experiences in searching for and applying for jobs.  They are supported throughout this process by the Head of Personal Development and have access to contacts to a number of business links that we have built up over the previous years due to the year on year success of previous placements.

All year 11s take part in a mock interview day in the spring term, where each student goes through the process of applying for a job up to taking part in an interview based on the job they have applied for.  The interviews are carried out by a group of employers who interview the students as they would potential employee. They also provide the students with verbal and written feedback on their performance.

Students are provided with 1-1 careers interviews or small group meetings, based on their needs.  Pupil premium students and potential NEETs are targeted initially for support with their post-16 choices.  Support is also provided during both year 10 and 11 Parents’ Evenings.

High achieving girls are targeted with small group sessions looking at university/higher education options.

Students in both Year 10/11 have assemblies focusing on post-16 options and choices available to them.

Parents are also invited to an information meeting at the start of the year to highlight the focus for the year, which includes post-16 choices, careers advice and how to seek it.

6th Form

Following work completed within the 6th Form, students are identified for IAG.  They are given extended 1-1 consultations which are followed up with feedback to the Head of 6th Form where necessary.  Students are also provided with a detailed report following their consultations.

As part of the 6th Form PD program students are prepared for UCAS applications from Year 12.  This includes preparing identifying suitable courses/universities and personal statements.

Parents are also invited to an information meeting at the start of the year to highlight the focus for the year, which includes post-18 choices, careers advice and how to seek it.

Other activities include:
  • UCAS conference
  • Russell Group (High Achievers Group) – Run by sixth form staff throughout the year for Year 11 High Achievers
  • Talks throughout the year by external agencies – student finance, setting up a business, working in the Arts (assemblies)
  • Post 16 Careers Week– Mock Interviews, talks throughout the week by a range of people including a music technician, accountant and Journalist 
  • Work Experience for BTEC students 
  • Work Shadowing
  • UCAS training/ Apprenticeships 
  • Year 12 UCAS Evening 
  • Year 10 Higher Education Evening
Provider Access

Please refer to our CEIAG Policy (which can be found here  for details on provider access or contact Ms G Fair (Vice Principal) by emailing


Unfortunately, due to COVID 19, we have had to cancel all Work Experience and Work Shadowing this year. These are being replaced by virtual work experience opportunities. Although many trips and school visits have also had to be cancelled, where possible, these have been replaced by virtual events and online resources, including Barclay's Life Skills content, Speakers for Schools interviews and TED talks. 

Our Careers Fortnight in March will focus on ensuring as many opportunities as possible are provided virtually for our students. Our careers advice service continues remotely and we continue to provide CEIAG through live discrete Personal Development lessons every Week A Tuesday morning. We regularly review our CEIAG provision and are already making plans to compensate for missed opportunities in the summer term and beyond.