Gatsby Benchmarks

1. A stable careers programme

At Heartlands Academy, we have an embedded programme of career education and guidance that is known and understood by pupils, parents, teachers and employers.​
Year 7Year 8Year 9Year 10Year 11
Careers in the NHSCareers in sportsGCSE optionsPreparing for work experienceWhat does college life look like?
Careers and your futureExploring careersUnderstanding the workplaceUnderstanding financesPreparing for post 16
Careers in the armed forcesCareers in childcareCareers in spaceWhat are A levels?Alternatives to college
Careers in constructionCareers in drivingCareers in politicsWhat are T levels?Post 16 application review
Careers of the futureCareers in fitnessCareers in mediaWhat are apprenticeships?GCSE exam period
Careers in the oceanCareers in natureCareers in designWhat are vocational courses?GCSE exam period

2. Learning from career and labour market information

Every student, and their parents, at Heartlands Academy can access good-quality information about future study options and labour market opportunities via our tutor sessions, academy website, assemblies and newsletters. They receive the support of our informed careers adviser (Marvet McAnuff) to make the best use of available information.​

  • By the age of 14, all students have accessed and used information about career paths and the labour market to inform their own decisions on study options.​
  • Parents and carers are encouraged via social media and a variety of platforms to access and use information about labour markets and future study options to inform their support to their children.​

My way into the world of work

Labour Market information guide

Labour market information

Labour Market Information (LMI) tells you about the workplace or labour market. It is information relating to:

  • Occupations and industries
  • Job numbers and salaries
  • Educational levels for occupations
  • Workforce demographics
  • Numbers of establishments in particular sectors

Labour market information also describes:

  • The condition of the labour market, past and present, as well as future projections
  • Where work opportunities are increasing or decreasing
  • What occupations exist
  • What you need to study to become a professional in that occupation
  • What is required to take up an occupation
  • How you can find a job, change jobs or progress in a career

Essentially, it is a useful tool to help research future jobs in the local area and to understand the skills needed for certain roles and the demand for future employment. Labour market information is at the heart of every effective career decision you will make. It is very difficult to realise your occupational aspirations and progress your career without awareness and understanding of the labour market trends.

Useful labour market information links

Careerometer A tool to compare jobs. Use the Careerometer to compare different jobs — salary, working hours, etc.

Careers Inspiration labour market information about Birmingham.

LMI for all an online data portal, which brings together existing national sources of high-quality labour market information that can inform career choices.

National Careers Service allows one to explore various aspects of a career (typical salaries, working hours, entry requirements, etc).

Nomis – official labour market statistics offers labour market information and key data trends about local areas.

Office for National Statistics offers regional LMI information.

Greater Birmingham and Solihull LMI Overview June 2022

Careers intent statement

3. Addressing the needs of each student

Students have different career guidance needs at different stages. Opportunities for advice and support need to be tailored to the needs of each student. An academy’s careers programme should embed equality and diversity considerations throughout.​
Year 7
Year 8
Year 9
Year 10
Year 11
Aims and objectives​
  • Inspire students to discover through exposure to a variety of career options.
  • Develop students aspiration and self-belief to pursue the career of their dreams.​
  • Students develop awareness of potential future journeys and map out their path to further education or employment after school finishes.​
  • Student are supported to make an​ informed choice about their GCSE options, grounded in secure knowledge about progression routes post-16.​
  • Prepare students for their future option choices, information about specific career pathways and the relevant employability skills.​
  • Students are given a range of ​experiences to develop their ​employability and career management skills. They are given information about post-16 options and where each might lead.​
  • Students are supported to make informed post-16 option choices grounded in the knowledge of post-18 pathways.​
Measurable outcomes​
  • All students are aware of a range of careers.​
  • All students can articulate their aspirations for their future career.​
  • All students can define job categories.​
  • All students understand how their careers education will progress through their time at school.​
  • All students can research three jobs that they would like to research.​
  • All students have an awareness of some of their own employability skills.​
  • All students are introduced to their options post-14.​
  • All students explain what a university is.​
  • Students understand employment opportunities in unfamiliar sectors​.
  • Students understand the range of opportunities that their education opens up.​
  • Students can articulate what colleges, universities and apprenticeships are and why they are important.​
  • All students know their options post-14.​
  • All students are informed about the impact their GCSE choices have on future opportunities.
  • All students have had a meaningful interaction with professionals from across various industries.​
  • All students under the link between their GCSE option choices and their future career pathways, including post-16 routes.​
  • All students complete work experience skills booklet recording the skills they have developed.​
  • All students complete work experience.​
  • All students have had further​ exposure to workplaces and develop more knowledge of sectors in practice.​
  • Students can explain how university applications work.​
  • All students can independently​ and confidently research course and job requirements.​
  • All students can identify the difference between college, sixth form and apprenticeships; as well as articulating which options will lead them to a career of their choice.​
  • All students feel confident making choices about their Post-16 destinations.​
  • All students have an opportunity to meet representatives of post-16 providers or to visit those institutions​.
  • Students secure and take up a place at a post-16 provider on a course appropriate for them.​
  • No students leave school NEET.
Monitoring and evaluation​
  • PSHCE delivery.
  • All students career aspirations recorded.
  • All students can name three or more careers in student voice.​
  • Student voice is taken at key points in the year (terms 1, 2 and 3).
  • Learning walks will monitor the delivery of the careers sessions to ensure consistent quality and appropriate feedback given.​
  • PSHCE delivery.
  • Students completed employability skills audits in Computer studies.​
  • All students can articulate their employability skills in student voice.​
  • The academy will keep a careers tracker of which students take part in which activities.
  • All students understand the link between qualifications and future career pathways – questionnaire​
  • PSHCE delivery.​
  • Options meetings record students who are a concern -> additional intervention through careers team.​
  • Monitor work placements secured (Term 2=20%, 3=40%, 4=75%, 5=90%)​.
  • Sample completed booklets – evidence of skills development from ‘start’ and ‘finish’ evaluation (Term 6).
  • Concerns raised through one-to-one meetings and through tutors – additional intervention. 100% non-NEET.​
  • Applications and placement tracker completed by form tutors​.
Activities to deliver actions (to be updated throughout the year)​
  • Careers education delivered through PSHCE programme (term 2).
  • Employer visit​.
  • Careers across the curriculum employer encounters​.
  • Careers education delivered through PSHCE programme.
  • Employer visit​.
  • The academy will keep a careers tracker of which students take part in which activities.
  • Careers across the curriculum employer encounters​.
  • Year 9 options evening careers fair.
  • Careers education delivered through PSHCE programme.
  • Careers across the curriculum employer encounters​.
  • College Provider: Different Post-16 Pathways.
  • Choosing a work experience placement.
  • PSHCE programme.
  • Work experience skills workshops.
  • Work experience placement (PP/SEND priority).
  • Disadvantaged one to one careers guidance meeting.
  • Careers across the curriculum employer encounters​.
  • Post-16 options assemblies​.
  • Post-16 application surgery​.
  • Apprenticeships and university – Post-18 pathways.
  • One to one careers guidance meetings (PP/SEND Priority).
  • Careers across the curriculum employer encounters​.
Gatsby ​benchmarks​1, 3, 4, 5​, 6, 7​1, 2, 4, 5, 7​5, 6, 7, 8​2, 4, 5, 6, 7​, 8​4, 5, 6, 7, 8

At Heartlands Academy, we collect and maintain accurate data for each student on their education, training or employment destinations for at least three years after they leave the academy, by:​

  • Signing a data sharing agreement with the local post 16 providers​
  • Requesting updates from the LA​
  • Sending an annual survey to Heartlands student alumni​
Heartlands Academy’s careers programme actively seeks to challenge stereotypical thinking and raise aspirations.
Year 7Year 8Year 9Year 10Year 11
Students are encouraged to identify personal traits, strengths and skills and develop confidence and have high expectations of themselves. ​Students build on personal strengths and begin to link skills to specific careers enabling realistic and informed decisions at transition stages​Students will understand the importance of enterprise​Students will understand different pathways post 16.​Students should use careers interviews to help understand different career pathways and entry requirements and encouraged to make contingency plans should results be better/worse than expected​
Students link curriculum to careers. ​Students will develop their understanding on skills needed to be employed.​Students will build on what skills are needed in the workplace. ​Students use Careers Coach to begin making important decisions about their futures​Students are helped with post 16 choices and encouraged to consider all their options including further study in 6th form, technical education and apprenticeships.​
Students link curriculum to careers. ​A university is invited to speak to all students. ​Student use Careers coach to research future pathways and careers information.​A university is invited to speak to all students. ​Students are encouraged to think about the kind of behaviour potential employers look for.​
Apprenticeship, T-Level, A-level and training providers are invited in to speak to all students.​An employer is invited to speak to all students​A university is invited to speak to all students​An employer is invited to speak to all students. ​Students are encouraged to attend careers talks, fairs, college open days and taster days.​
All students have access to different providers through a careers fair​Pupils to understand different pathways including apprenticeships ​An employer is invited to speak to all students.​A college is invited to speak to all students. ​Students apply for colleges, apprenticeships and sixth forms. ​
Pupils understand the importance of communication and teamwork​Pupils will participate in events such as Science week​Students to explore leadership​Students to visit a college in the local area. ​Form tutors will record intended destinations on our school system​
Pupils will participate in events such as Science week​Parents informed with career updates via the newsletter and website ​Economic awareness developed further and students encouraged to think about employability, ​Students explore what is a CV, what is a cover letter and why do people applying for jobs need them? Students encouraged to this process when applying to be a Y11 Prefect. ​Parents informed with career updates via the newsletter and website ​
Parents informed with career updates via the newsletter and website​Apprenticeship, T-Level, A-level and training providers are invited in to speak to all students.​Students to understand different pathways including apprenticeships ​Students begin to explore interview techniques​Support for SEND students with college application​
Students will understand how to option choices for GCSEs link to careers. ​Students have access to presentations by a variety of P16 providers.​Apprenticeship, T-Level, A-level and training providers are invited in to speak to all students.​
Apprenticeship, T-Level, A-level and training providers are invited in to speak to all students.​Students explore local jobs in the West Midlands​
Students explore future jobs. ​
Parents informed with career updates via the newsletter and website ​
Students participate in work experience​
Apprenticeship, T-Level, A-level and training providers are invited in to speak to all students.​

At Heartlands Academy, we keep systematic records of the individual advice given to each student, and subsequent agreed decisions via Compass Plus. Students have access to these records to support their career development in their career log books.

4. Linking curriculum learning to careers

Teachers at Heartlands use My Path and link curriculum learning with careers. STEM subject teachers highlight the relevance of STEM subjects for a wide range of career pathways.​

5. Encounters with employers and employees

  • By the age of 14, every student at Heartlands Academy will have had the opportunity to learn how the different STEM subjects help people to gain entry to and be more effective workers within, a wide range of careers.​
  • Every year, from the age of 11, Heartlands Academy students participate in at least one meaningful encounter with an employer.​
Key Stage 3Key Stage 4
Physical EducationOutdoor education at Ackers AdventureSports laboratory university visit​
DramaCommedia dell'arte workshop and careers Q+A​Devising from a practitioner workshop and careers Q+A​
MusicIntroduction to different careers throughout the curriculumVisit to a music studio​
MathematicsTrip to Birmingham City University​KMPG and HSBC
ScienceAnimal workshop and science dome​Trip to National Science Museum
HistoryTrips to Birmingham historical sites​Trip to Birmingham Back to Backs
GeographyHabitat heroes​Birmingham: urban regeneration​
Religious EducationSt Matthew's Church and Birmingham City Mission assemble - Easter​Trip to St Paul's Cathedral
Hospitality and CateringTrip to Green's Windmill in NottinghamTrip to BBC Good Food Show in summer and winter ​
Design and TechnologyTrips to a design event at the NEC and ThinktankTrip to Grand Designs Live at the NEC
Computer StudiesMinecraft workshop, ​VR workshop, robotics and codingN/A
ArtTrip to an art galleryTrip to an art gallery
EnglishMock interviews: my dream career​Mock interviews: where to next?​
Every student has multiple opportunities to learn from employers about work, employment and the skills that are valued in the workplace.​

6. Experiences of workplaces

Every student at Heartlands Academy has first-hand experiences of the workplace through work visits, work shadowing and work experience to help them explore career opportunities, and expand their networks.​

By the age of 16, every student at Heartlands Academy will have had at least one experience in a workplace, in addition to any part-time job(s) they may have.​

  • Year 7 – take part in work shadowing on the academy premises, where they are placed in various roles for half a day, as an introduction to the world of work, focusing on professionalism, task completion and workplace etiquette.​
  • Year 8 – take part in REED virtual work experience, where they learn about the different roles and rules of a workplace.​
  • Year 10 – take part in work experience across the West Midlands, where they get an immersive experience into the world of work. All of the work placements are sourced independently by our students and checked by WESS, to ensure each place has the relevant insurance and safeguarding checks in place. All students are visited by Heartlands staff, during their work placement, to check on their well-being and to receive feedback from employers.​

7. Encounters with further and higher education

  • By the age of 16, every student at heartlands Academy, in Years 7-11, has had a meaningful encounter with providers of the full range of learning opportunities, including sixth forms, colleges, universities and apprenticeship providers. This includes the opportunity to meet both staff and students.
Universities campus visit and tourT – Levels dayApprenticeship daySixth form dayCollege day
  • Aston University​
  • Birmingham City University​
  • University of Birmingham​
  • Oxford University​
  • Liverpool John Moore University​
  • BMET
  • Cadbury Sixth Form College
  • Dudley College​
  • Halesowen College
  • Sandwell College
  • BOA
  • Aston University Engineering Academy​
  • Access Creative College​
  • Heart of England Training​
  • Reflections Training Academy​
  • Skills Training UK
  • System Group​
  • Motivational Preparation College for Training​
  • Access Creative College​
  • Aspiration Training
  • BIMM Institute Birmingham
  • Crackerjack Training Ltd​
  • Babington​
  • Aston Manor Academy
  • Waverley Studio College
  • West Walsall E-ACT
  • NBA – E-ACT
  • Sutton Coldfield Grammar School for Girls​
  • Aston University Engineering Academy​
  • BMET Sutton Coldfield/ Matthew Boulton​
  • Cadbury Sixth Form College
  • Joseph Chamberlain College​
  • Solihull College
  • Solihull Sixth Form College​
  • South and City College​
  • Sandwell College​
  • Halesowen College​

At Heartlands Academy, a meaningful encounter is one in which the students have an opportunity to explore what it’s like to learn in that environment, through taster days, where the students are able to experience:​

  • Application process​
  • Taster session​s
  • Interview​s

At post 16 training providers.

8. Personal guidance

Students have opportunities for guidance interviews with a careers adviser, who could be internal (a member of academy staff) or external, provided they are trained to an appropriate level. These are available whenever significant study or career choices are being made. They should be expected for all students but should be timed to meet their individual needs.​

At Heartlands Academy, every student has at least one independent career advice interview by age 16, with our qualified careers advisor – Marvet McAnuff.​

Our SEND cohort and students with an EHCP have at least one guidance interview every year.​

Marvet McAnuff – Independent Careers Advisor​

The Careers Education Programme at Heartlands Academy is complemented by one-to-one careers advice and guidance from Marvet McAnuff, Independent Careers Adviser. Students in Years 7 – 11 have access to impartial one-to-one advice from Marvet every Tuesday. This is facilitated through appointments and lunchtime drop-ins for quick careers queries.​

Marvet’s experience in this field means that students have the opportunity to explore a range of possible future pathways, including both college, sixth form, apprenticeships and T-level providers.​

If requested, Marvet will also engage with parents and carers to best support the child in their next steps.​

Further to independent careers advice appointments, Marvet also supports the academy in a wider capacity with events and provides opportunities for providers of technical education and apprenticeship teams to access students in Years 7 to 11.​

If you would like any further information, please contact Marvet via email:

Finding our more

If you would like any further information about our careers programme, please contact Mrs E Jones, or Mr M Ranford:

Mrs Emma Jones , CEIAG Lead
Mr Mark Ranford, CEIAG SLT Lead
Telephone: 0121 464 3931


Marvet McAnuff: Careers Adviser


To view our latest careers guidance and provider access for education and training providers policy, please view our policies page.

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