We are delighted to announce that King Edward’s School is a finalist in this year’s Independent Schools of the Year Awards, for its Student Careers Programme.
The Independent Schools of the Year 2023 is an awards programme organised by the Independent School Parent magazine. The awards, which attract entries from schools across the country, are designed to celebrate outstanding best practice and success stories. Award winners will be announced in October. KES has previously won this award in the Performing Arts category.
A newly envisaged Careers programme was launched at KES two years ago with the aim of expanding the focus and scope of our pupils’ future career aspirations to encourage independent thought and a better understanding of the changing nature of the workplace. Over the past two years, Mrs Rees-Roberts, our Careers Education Coordinator, has worked with colleagues, parents, OEs and many third parties, to open the doors of opportunity to all our pupils in Years 7 -13 and to enlighten them about the wider possibilities available alongside University, such as Degree Apprenticeships.
There have been many new and exciting initiatives set up to achieve this, including:
- The Inspiring Minds Speaker series – where guest speakers deliver careers talks on topics such as hostage negotiation, being a dive commando and working in fields such as Art, Engineering, Law and many more.
- During National Careers Week and National Apprenticeship Week a lunchtime Careers hub was set up, led by staff and Careers Prefects in Year 12, to answer questions on a huge range of different Careers-related topics.
- An inaugural Green Careers Conference is being held this November, to coincide with Green Careers Week, with a focus on Ethical Careers.
- Our Inspiring Mentors programme –has enabled Year 12 pupils to have access to industry professionals across different careers, allowing them to have frank and honest conversations about their possible future career choices.
- KES Careers Fair –Is a biennial Careers convention, which last year had 60 delegates and over 400 attendees from Years 10 – 13.
- Work experience –nearly two thirds of our Year 12 cohort undertook work experience during the Summer Term with full school support during the process. This year, we had pupils going to the European Space Agency, Army Helicopters in Yeovilton, Red Planet Pictures, Aardman Animations and many more besides.
- During the Summer Term a series of Careers days took place for different year groups, each with a different focus. Year 7 explored careers in Forensic Science, Year 8 looked at careers in business and our Year 10s undertook Morrisby testing, as well as writing their first CVs and cover letters.
All of these developments have helped the Careers programme to become central to life at KES, with the Careers Education Coordinator working closely with PSHE colleagues, as well as other members of the Senior School staff, to provide a holistic and well-considered programme that leads from an exploration of the importance of soft skills and the Japanese notion of Ikigai in Year 7, through Year 8 tackling stereotypes in the workplace, Year 9 looking at what makes ‘a good choice’, Year 10 learning about safe working practices, Year 11s receiving a full tutor timetable about choices and Sixth Formers learning about apprenticeships, the world of work and having the opportunity to undertake work experience for themselves.
In gaining recognition for the programme, King Edward’s would like to thank all those individuals and organisations, often drawn from the wider school community, who have given so generously of their time and expertise in support of Careers Education at KES.
Commenting on the Careers programme at KES, Mrs Rees-Roberts said: “Careers at KES is such a vital part of building our pupils’ independence and ability to adapt in their future working lives. We have been excited to broaden and strengthen our programme over the past two years and look forward to continuing to expand our offering as we move forward.”
Headmaster, Martin Boden, added: “It has been wonderful to see the Careers Education Programme at KES go from strength to strength these past two years under the energetic and very creative leadership of Mrs Rees-Roberts. I should like to thank all those colleagues, parents, Old Edwardians and member of the wider community who have contributed so thoughtfully to this vital area of school life, and I congratulate the team on deservedly being nominated as a finalists in this year’s prestigious Independent Schools of the Year Awards.”