North Independent Secondary School of the Year 2020 North Independent Secondary School of the Year 2021

Careers and higher education

Helping to make informed choices for the future

Our newly opened careers and higher education centre provides a wealth of resources and guidance on helping students make the right decision for the next stage of their life.

The centre is staffed by an experienced team which comprises the Head of Careers, Head of Higher Education and Student Development, UCAS Coordinator and Oxbridge Coordinator. A wider team provides specialist advice on other routes, for example creative courses and careers.

All students receive formal careers lessons from Year 9 onwards. Informal discussion is encouraged throughout and students are given extra help at key transition stages such as choosing GCSE and A-level subjects and applying to university. Careers staff have input at every stage of a student’s development.

Pupils of any age are encouraged to drop in for advice, whether to ask a quick question or to have a longer discussion about future options. We are committed to supporting all GSAL students as they work through important decisions about life after school as we believe there is no substitute for readily available one to one advice and guidance.

All pupils in Year 9 complete Morrisby Online which profiles their interests, aptitudes and personal qualities, suggesting possible matches to suitable careers, courses or alternative routes. It is an excellent starting point for discussion and research and can be modified as ideas change and they progress through their education.

We encourage students to attend university events and we offer advice every step of the way. Specialist support is provided to students applying to competitive courses such as medicine and dentistry. We are very proud of the success of our students in these areas with typically all applicants receiving an interview, and most, offers of places. Our Oxbridge support programme ensures students receive specialist advice from the universities to support their application.

The careers team and individual departments also arrange a number of outside speakers to talk to pupils on a wide range of careers and HE options during the year. Work experience is offered in Years 11 and 12 and pupils are made aware of the rapidly changing nature of the HE and labour market, ensuring they are informed about alternative routes to degree and professional qualifications via the new apprenticeship system.

Above all, we believe every student is an individual. We treat them as such, offering an open door policy and meeting with every student as often as necessary so we can effectively support their dreams with sound advice and guidance. Parents are welcome to get in touch too, and we support students with applications and advice even after they have left us.

Or, if you prefer to chat to someone please call our admissions team. For Senior School call 0113 228 5121 and for Primary School call 0113 228 5113.