Ormiston South Parade Academy becomes first primary to win careers award

  23 June, 2020

Ormiston South Parade Academy has become the first primary school in the country to be given the ‘Quality in Careers Standard’ award.

The achievement, which was awarded to the school by the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership, demonstrates the academy’s unrivalled commitment to helping prepare their pupils for the future from an early age – with careers as vets, teachers, archaeologists and even mountain rescue workers being amongst the favourites to aim for.

Children at the academy take part in career learning and develop employability skills, which helps to raise aspirations across the school and inspires pupils to be more committed to their lessons. Careers education is embedded in the curriculum, by linking lessons to potential future careers. For example, when learning about rocks, the school invited in a geologist to teach pupils about the profession, whilst in English class they got to meet a journalist.

This commitment to careers extends to school life more generally. An assembly programme was devised around jobs, and a range of topics have been covered, from how the role of women has changed in the workplace, to how to become an MP (which was inspired by learning about democracy in Ancient Greece). Meanwhile, roles in the school like Prefect and Playground Friend are formally applied for, with pupils submitting a CV and cover letter followed by an interview.

Ormiston South Parade Academy makes sure to supplement this culture with activities outside of school, like events and trips to workplaces. Year 6 girls attended a ‘Women in STEM’ event at the local sixth form college, encouraging them to aspire to currently male-dominated careers. One year group also had the chance to visit a local manufacturing factory, to learn about a day in the life of someone who works in printing. All pupils have visited the local library to learn about what it takes to be a librarian.

However, the school recognises that aspiration is not just created in the classroom but is also developed at home. They carried out a survey of parents to work out if there was information needed so that pupils could be offered the right support by their families. After identifying any gaps in knowledge, the school sent home information tailored to the interests of each individual child, so their parents are now equipped to support and encourage them with their ambitions. As a result of all this exposure, pupils show a keen interest in their futures and what they hope to be when they grow up.

Kate Robinson, Principal at Ormiston South Parade Academy said:

“We’re all very pleased that the hard work that’s gone into developing a strong careers programme has been recognised. Not only is a careers education important for students’ futures, but we’ve found that implementing a clear strategy has helped in other areas too, from improving confidence to increasing interest during lessons.”

Jane Nolan, Director of Primary at Ormiston Academies Trust said:

“I’m extremely proud of everyone at Ormiston South Parade Academy for this well-deserved achievement. Here at Ormiston Academies Trust, our priority is ensuring all pupils are given a well-rounded education, and that includes helping students to prepare for the future and learn about the long-term opportunities available. It’s great that we are setting a precedent for primary schools to include careers in their teaching.”

Charlotte Carter, careers lead at Ormiston South Parade Academy said:

“Careers education has become a significant part of the curriculum we offer our pupils at OSPA. Aspirations have been raised and many more of our pupils are considering taking various paths into work including universities and apprenticeships. With everything going on in the world around us, careers education has given the pupils the opportunity to build on their self-esteem and challenge the everyday stereotypes around them.”

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