Schools and colleges need to continuously evaluate the impact of the careers programme, analyse destinations data, track student progression after they leave school or college and take into account student, parent/carer, employer and teacher views.
Students, parents, teachers and employers should be given the opportunity to provide regular and systematic evaluative feedback on their participation in activities via questionnaires, surveys and focus groups. This feedback is then used to inform decisions about the future development of the programme and feeds into the whole-school process of evaluation.
Evaluating the impact of the careers programme, in-depth leaver/exit surveys and focus groups can help gain an insight into the effectiveness of careers programmes. Students can be given the opportunity to reflect on how well they believe the five or seven years of careers learning has prepared them for the next stage of their career pathway.
There are many ways that a school can gather feedback from all it’s audiences, such as:
Example evaluation surveys can be found below.
As a minimum you should review your whole school careers programme along a similar time frame to other whole school policy reviews such as the curriculum, which in many cases is every three years. Best practice would be to carry out regular formative assessment of the programme and complete a full programme evaluation annually.
You should be keeping track of all career-related learning associated with the benchmarks in your school. This will enable
you to know that every student has had the appropriate careers provision for their relevant Key Stage and help you to prioritise activities for those who need it the most. Although tracking information is likely to be stored in a central location, staff from across the school will need to support the collection and recording of this information, similar to attainment and behaviour information.
Where possible it is best practice to capture views of employers after each activity or interaction with students. There
is a range of ways to do this, including: surveys, interviews, dialogue with school staff, focus groups. It is important to capture a breadth of views to inform your programme planning and evaluation. The method of capturing this feedback is less important than who you are talking to and the regularity of the feedback, and how this information is then used.