Journals | Photos | Work | Comment

Careers advice - why the government doesn't get it

I too can remember my first contact with careers advice and it involved careers evening in which my father asked the careers teacher what I should do with my life and the teacher replied that that is my decision.  My father went off in a huff and I went on to become a careers advisor.  I have worked with many teachers involved in careers guidance in the past and have always held the most respect for them, even those that do not actively choose to do it still treated it with respect.  And they have always valued an independent careers advisor coming in to their school and providing one to one guidance - a valuable resource once.The teachers knew - as we advisors did - that any school with a sixth form found impartial career guidance at odds with its 'business'.  The Head teachers I found always tolerated us and would undermine us if it conflicted with their own intentions regarding THEIR PUPILS moving onto THEIR sixth form.  Our impartiality here was recognised by pupils however carefully we phrased it.So it beggars belief to me how schools - now effectively a business - can be given this cherished service and responsibility.  For schools that have no sixth form the progress of their pupils after they leave is not a priority, their grades are.  Careers advisors have always been a soft target but careers for so many pupils at school is a moving ambition, I for one never imagined I would have become one.  The point here is that it is an intervention at a critical stage in a child's life that can influence them on one of their most important decisions - even if the school actively disagrees with it for their bums on seats in their sixth form.  It is so absolutely obvious that schools and colleges are vehemently against an independent service that does not fit with its business model - and no doubt lobbied against it.I now work in adult education and manage an adult guidance service which has been praised by Matrix and Ofsted for its outstanding work with people from deprived communities.  Guidance is for life but if we do not get it right at the first point of contact in person's life we leave tainted memories. If we do get it right then we leave confident young adults.

User login