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Deans and the pastoral care system

Career education and guidance becomes a whole-school responsibility when it is an essential element of pastoral care. Deans and whānau and form teachers are ideally positioned to provide ongoing support for students in their care. To do this effectively they need dedicated time, support and guidance from senior management and career education leaders.

Staff providing pastoral care can:

  • provide ongoing mentoring for students in their care, preferably using resources supplied by the school’s career education leader
  • monitor each student’s learning and career planning
  • monitor each student’s use of career information and assist them to interpret it
  • provide a basic level of career guidance
  • identify students who need special attention or may be at risk of not making successful transitions, based on discussions with students and monitoring indicators like attendance and engagement with classroom learning
  • talk to the career education leader about students who may be intending to leave school
  • encourage parents and whānau to support their student’s career and learning planning.

Curriculum leaders and classroom teachers

Curriculum leaders are pivotal in designing teaching and learning opportunities that meet students’ current and future needs. They ensure effective links are made and maintained between learning areas, career education and pathway options at and beyond school.

Teachers play a key role in supporting and encouraging students to explore these opportunities, to take responsibility for their own learning, to make decisions and to move through transitions with increasing resilience and self-reliance. Curriculum leaders can liaise with the school’s career education leader and ensure that all teachers receive appropriate support and encouragement.

It is important that all teachers and curriculum leaders:

  • understand the value and purpose of career education and guidance
  • are aware of the career management competencies and how to address them in their teaching
  • understand how to create career education opportunities in their curriculum areas and to connect with learning occurring in wider contexts (eg. career activities and extracurricular activities)
  • understand the work and tertiary education and training environments their students will be moving on to, and the changing nature of these
  • are aware of and sensitive to their students' potential pathways
  • engage in discussions with students, and with their parents, about their learning and potential pathways
  • talk to career education leaders about students who may be in need of career guidance
  • receive appropriate professional resources, training, and support in career education.

Students

Many schools encourage student involvement and peer support within career education, for example, by:

  • training senior students in peer mentoring programmes so they have an understanding of career issues
  • including a student representative on the careers lead team
  • inviting students to help maintain and distribute career resources
  • inviting ex-students to share their experiences of further education, training and employment.

“Our website makes a statement about how important career education and guidance is in the education our school provides. The Career Information section is accessible from the home page. The information is primarily for students but we know parents go there too. We have information about STAR, scholarships, student loans and links to all universities and polytechnics. We also cover employment and gap years and provide links to a number of career development tools and online videos. We see it as a priority to keep the information up-to-date and relevant to students and their families.”

Principal , Avonside Girls’ High School

Published on: 04 Aug 2009


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