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Careers Service & Work Experience

At Saint Paul’s Catholic High School we work hard to ensure that all our students have the opportunity to make informed decisions about their future. We do this through a programme of activities which will help you to choose the 14-19 pathways best suited to your individual aspirations and by developing the skills which will enable you to manage a lifelong career.

We provide a programme of careers education, information, advice and guidance for all students (years 8-11) in partnership with Our Futures and other outside agencies.


The Careers service in school is provided by Mrs Ursula Gallagher, Mr Seamus McAuliffe and Careers Adviser Mrs Sue Walton from Our Futures.

Where to find us

The Careers Office is located on the first floor in the Library.

Why might you visit the careers room?

By providing individualised and impartial information, advice and guidance, we can help you to:

• Choose and pursue a career idea

• Make year 10 options and sixth form choices

• Find an apprenticeship

• Prepare a CV

• Find a work experience placement  

Career Solutions Guidance

We use Our Futures for careers advice within our school. They are an exciting and new local social enterprise delivering high quality careers advice and transition support to schools across Manchester. One-to-one guidance appointments are available during the school day and by agreement with teaching staff in the KS3 & 4.


Year 8 Options Choices

Students are supported throughout the options process through assemblies, talks, option evenings, and option booklets. All year 8 pupils are invited at the start of the year to an Expectations Evening where they are provided with further information about future options. Here students and parents can access guidance from Our Futures and university guidance.

Careers Fair

A careers fair is held every year at school where students are able to talk to local colleges, training and apprenticeship providers and listen to employer talks so they can consider clearly their future options. This event is aimed at years 10/11.

Help with College Applications

Students are supported with applying for colleges through guidance from Mrs Ursula Gallagher, Mr Seamus McAuliffe and Mrs S Walton. Each year Xaverian, Loreto, Trafford and Manchester College are invited into school to provide year 11 with an assembly about their college, courses, applying, student life etc.

Careers Resources:

Job Profiles – very useful to learn about jobs students are interested in AND to widen aspirations to new jobs.  VISIT HERE

Scroll down to job families which are under ‘Alternatively search from list below’. Job families will widen awareness of jobs related to the career or subjects that interest you. For example if PE teacher interests you look around the job profiles in Sport, Leisure and Tourism – are Sports Development Office, Sports and Exercise Psychologist jobs you’d heard of before?

College Websites – use these to look at course contents, extra-curricular activities, see news items and get a feel for what goes on at there. Watch these over the coming months in year 11 as you get closer to decision time on which college you’d choose.

We strongly advise year 11s to visit at least 2 colleges with a family member.

All pupils are advised to apply for 2 colleges. School deadline for applications is beginning of December.

Colleges prospectuses in the careers section of the library. The main colleges year 11’s are interested in are: Loreto, Xaverian, The Manchester College, Trafford College. Small numbers have applied to FETA, Manchester Enterprise Academy, Aquinas, Cheadle and Marple, Newall Green VI Form, Myerscough and Stockport in recent years.

See individual websites for the courses they offer and open events in the Autumn. A list of open events will be posted in Autumn Term.

Years 10s are able to experience tasters with Loreto, Xaverian or The Manchester College during summer term. Trafford College had an open event on 18th June which was announced to pupils in form time and assembly.

New Kudos is careers software that school invests in. See attached guide on how it can help you throughout years 7-11. You can use a questionnaire to help you think about skills and tasks you’d enjoy and then matches you to suggested career ideas to investigate. If you know you like a subject for GCSE, BTEC or A level find out about the popular careers linked to it.  VISIT HERE

Ask a teacher for the License code so you set up your own account and access Kudos at home or in school.

University – Looking ahead to the choice of University degrees, what’s involved and entry requirements (which A levels, are BTEC’s accepted) is very useful for many year 11s as they make post 16 choices.

UCAS – course search: all university degrees are applied to through UCAS and it provides an excellent research tool. Universities are more than happy to speak to year 10s and 11s about A level and BTEC choices and often speaking to someone can get a lot more information than reading ‘Entry Requirements’ on the website.

The Russell Group is made up of the most prestigious and competitive Universities in the UK. They have written a comprehensive guide about A level choices. Pupils predicted grades A and B at GCSE would find this most relevant.  VISIT HERE

Careersbox - the national online careers film and video library. Real people, real jobs to help young people, students, teachers, career professionals, influencers.  VISIT HERE

Future Moroph - Government website to promote careers using STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects. There ‘skills gaps’ or lots of jobs available in many job areas where these subjects are essential. If your academic talent and passion is with STEM subjects, let your curiosity explore careers and activities on this website.  VISIT HERE



Work Experience

Work experience is not statutory and many Outstanding and Good Schools do not send pupils on work experience. Self-placements, volunteering, ‘work shadowing’ require young people, ideally with the support of their family network to research and approach employers or people working in their chosen field is a crucial job hunting skill.

Year 11s often explore how to do this after GCSEs and at college. During year 11 careers appointment aiming to speak to someone (a relative, neighbour or family friend) is often written into a Careers Action Plan during which we write together. Often a young person’s career ambition has been influenced by a relative or family friend who’s in a career they love. Requesting to speak specifically about careers and choices after school on the phone, meeting up (with the internet on hand) arranging a Skype chat or even visiting them at work will hugely advance understanding of this career idea. 

Plotr -  Another careers website with video clips and a good explanation about work experience and volunteering.  VISIT HERE

Get In Go Far - Is the new Government website for Apprenticeships.  VISIT HERE

Understanding the Apprenticeships you want through research is the really important and it’s not available on this website. Looking at real live vacancies to see how much is paid, entry requirements (they’ll differ for the same job as its up to the employer to decide what they’re looking for).  Year 11 leavers can start applying for apprenticeships as early as February but the majority of vacancies come out in the summer around and after exam time. Look for July onwards start date in the advert which will be a sign the employer is happy to take on school or college leavers.  VISIT HERE

Because apprenticeships are so individual to each year 11 it is best to ask for a careers appointment early in the school year. More information on apprenticeships will follow on this website.


Services and Information

Careers Guidance Service in school is provided by the company Our Futures by a qualified and experienced Careers Adviser called Sue Walton, who has been with Saint Paul’s for 3 years. It is compulsory for every pupil to have a careers intervention, and many year 11s meet Sue frequently depending on their needs.

Sue works closely with Heads of Year, the SEN team and many parents. She is more than happy to email, speak on the phone or meet with parents and carers to discuss their student’s career pathway. Year 10s have already met Sue a number of times in assembly and form time.

Meeting Sue - through appointments, lunch time drop or on email which is publicised on posters around school. Summer term 2016 available on Thursdays. E mail

Careers Education – Mr McAuliffe is the Senior Manager responsible for Careers Education, Information, Advise and Guidance.

Career Connect is the charity providing Manchester’s Targeted Youth Support Service (formerly known as Connexions until October 2015).  VISIT HERE

Check website for their offer – due to cuts it is reduced and runs an online and appointment only service for young people without a secure college, training or apprenticeship place.

Careers website is useful

Parental Guidance - the aim of this site is to provide helpful information to parents and carers, many of whom feel at a loss about the best way to advise the young people in their care.  The website run for parents by careers advice writers.  VISIT HERE

Funding – government information on bursaries and child benefit.  VISIT HERE

* Saint Paul's Catholic Hight School is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

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