How the Quality in Careers Standard can support you to develop and celebrate good practice in CEIAG provision.

The process of working towards, and achieving the national Quality in Careers Standard will definitely help any institution to develop, improve and celebrate good practice. There will be scrutiny of what is already happening, a celebration of what is good, and reorganisation of anything that isn't of benefit to students. The route to success requires evidence of a structured policy, underpinning careers education and work-related learning programme, and embedded quality careers guidance.

The Government (through the Department for Education) has issued STATUTORY GUIDANCE which strongly recommends all Schools to achieve the Quality in Careers Standard as the national CEIAG quality award.

The revised (January 2018) Statutory Guidance to Schools on their Careers Guidance duty includes in Paragraph 20 the following:

20. Schools can gain formal accreditation of their careers programme through the Quality in Careers Standard - the national quality award for careers education, information, advice and guidance. The Standard offers an opportunity for schools to undergo an external evaluation of their careers programme and so is distinct from the Compass self-assessment. Work is continuing to align the Standard more fully to the Benchmarks and to incorporate Compass into its processes, so those schools achieving the Standard meet all eight Benchmarks. We strongly recommend that all schools work towards the updated Quality in Careers Standard, incorporating Compass, to support the development of their careers programme.

Prospects is a Licensed Awarding Body, authorised to act on behalf of the Quality in Careers Standard consortium to assess and accredit schools, colleges and work-based learning organisations against the national Quality in Careers Standard. 

Working towards and achieving the national Quality in Careers Standard will give CEIAG a higher profile and increase the involvement of senior managers and, especially governors. The statutory duty for securing access to careers guidance is required of governors as well as school and college leaders and staff. Any institution holding the Quality in Careers Standard may be in a better position to make a successful bid for external funding.

Some commentators have argued that institutions who evidence that they "take careers learning seriously" by achieving the standard can claim a related improvement in attainment and attendance – this may be because students are able to make the links between classroom achievement and successful learning and career outcomes. (For example the report; Advancing Ambitions from the Sutton Trust).

Achievement of the standard demonstrates to those outside the institution, including OfSTED that a high standard has been reached, with positive, measurable outcomes for students and an outstanding contribution to their personal development and future learning and careers. Achievement of the standard will also provide an opportunity to prove to students, their parents / carers, and to employers that there is a quality structure in place to support transition into adult life and that their future is important to the school/college.

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