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Careers Guidance

The Holmewood School careers education, information, advice and guidance (CEIAG) provides students with support and guidance through a structured careers programme that is embedded into the curriculum across all subjects . This includes the delivery of different activities, such as industry workplace visits, industry delivered workshops, PSHE, STEM week and SMSC Activities. The programme has been developed in consideration of the Gatsby Benchmarks and has the following overarching aims:

  1. To help our young people make decisions about learning and work that is right for them based on an understanding of themselves and their potential capabilities.

  2. To personally develop each of our students to ensure they have the skills and knowledge that will enable them to access and make good use of the information, advice and guidance that is available to them, including the most up to date labour market data.

  3. To provide our young people with the skills necessary for them to effectively manage their careers, search for relevant opportunities and manage the transitions that are associated with the world of work.

We provide multiple opportunities throughout the academic year for students to experience a variety of work environments through a series of workplace visits that aims to help students make well informed career or further education choices that are appropriate to their needs. We offer one to one careers advice and guidance from a highly qualified and Independent Careers Guidance Officer in Year 9, 11 and 13. This affords every student the chance to discuss their work experience and education options. This is also available to students on an adhoc basis if the young person or staff working with the young person feels it would be beneficial at another time. Students have the chance to attend regional and national careers fairs and there is an annual careers fair held at the school where potential employers and further education providers share information with students.

Our in house Careers and College Liaison Officers work with local businesses and colleges to provide opportunities for work experience and vocational study choices from 14 years of age. This is planned carefully with students, families and staff to ensure aspirations, interests and strengths are matched. The 14+ transition review is a key factor in this decision-making process. Work experience, work related learning and vocational or more academic routes of learning are all considered and options are tailored to suit individual needs. This information feeds into the young person's individual transition plan upon which targets are set to help students make progress towards their career and education aspirations. The plan is reviewed and updated annually until the young person transitions to adulthood.

We always try to match work experience placements to our students needs and interests. We are currently working with Kentish Town City Farm, Bespoke Cleaning, ArtsDepot North Finchley, Care Trade, Ambitious about Autism and NCS. In the past placements have included The House of Commons, Sega, and various local retail outlets.

In addition, we provide a number of internal work experience roles for students from age 13. These include, Assistant to the Head or Deputy; Admin and Post Assistants; Animal Assistants; Playground Mentors; Librarians; Kindness Coordinators; and Assistant Caretakers. These roles are advertised periodically within school and students are supported to write an application and attend an interview. Questions are provided in advance so our students can prepare for them at home with support from their family. As well as practical work experience, students are supported in acquiring skills for the world of work. This is in the form of guidance with interview skills and techniques, job searching, filling in application forms, personal presentation and so on. Practice and experience in these skills is also threaded into cross curricular learning. We also invite speakers from institutions such as National Apprenticeship Service who give presentations to staff, students and parents on the many pathways that are available to them.

A few students choose to concentrate on their education rather than practical work experience. They participate in the world of work lessons and are given advice on the college courses that may be suitable for them. We work closely with Barnet and Southgate College, Capel Manor College, Christs College Finchley and a few others outside of the area.

Students in the 6th form are able to apply for paid internships, during school holidays, at Footprints Life Camp, a social enterprise project set up and run by our Assistant Head Teacher, Naj D’Silva. They will be supported to complete application forms and attend an interview. If appointed, the successful candidates will work alongside Footprints Director and team of staff to mentor and teach younger students at the camps run in the school holidays.

We closely monitor the careers and education path of our leavers. In cooperation with local authorities we support them in the process of transition from Holmewood to the adult world. Some of our graduates are currently working for Project Search or Care Trade, others have chosen to continue their education at college or university. There are also students who have decided to concentrate on acquiring more functional life skills.

We are currently working towards The Quality in Careers Standard.  Please see below for our 2023 - 2024 careers education plan.

Useful Websites

Careermag for Inclusion: is a publication  for those working with young people with SEND, for/with PRU, charities or special schools/colleges. There will are three  publications to date which all include case studies of success to inspire employers and encourage them to offer meaningful experiences in their workplace. Click for issue 1, issue 2 and issue 3. Apprenticeships: A government website designed to help you find an apprenticeship programme in the UK, including employers who are ‘Disability Confident’.


Access to work: A government website with information that will help you get support in work if you have a disability or a health condition.


Barclays lifeskills: A lifeskills projected developed by Barclays Bank with tools, tips and learning resources to help and support you in your careers development.


Caretrade: An organisation for 18-25 year olds focusing on helping young autistic people into the world of work via a structured two year programme.


I could: An interactive website with real life career videos and information to inspire your career.

Barnet and Southgate College is a large Further Education college in North London offering  a wide range of traditional qualifications and vocational courses in over 15 subject areas, across campuses in High Barnet, Colindale and Southgate.  We have worked in partnership with them for many years.  


The National Careers Service is a government website that provides careers information, advice and guidance.   


LMI for all is a website where you can find information and explore current labour market trends in the UK.  

The Holmewood School Careers Programme 2023 - 2024

Careers and Work Experience Policy

Work Experience Case Studies

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The  THSL Week Long Work Experience Placement - Building Confidence

The House of Commons


X is in Year 11 and personally approached the House of Commons for a work experience placement as part of their one week placement service. X  worked in the Inclusion and Diversity Department under an assigned supervisor.  The department was very impressed with his mature attitude and the experience proved to be hugely confidence building for X. 


The Inclusion and Diversity team are currently working on delivering autism awareness and disability training for its staff and were very interested in listening to X’s experiences.  The team was in fact so impressed with X that they have asked to visit the school to listen to X and his class present to their team about neurodiversity. 


This experience has been integral in building X’s Self esteem and he is now ready and looking forward to further work experience placements.

The  THSL Internship Experience - Exploring Career Options

THSL Teaching Assistant Internship


X applied for an Internal  Teaching Assistant Internship. One of a number of internal placements that THSL is able to offer to its students. X has worked with a range of classes in the school and is able to support our younger members of the school community with their work and as a mentor in the classroom.

X also  has a strong interest in animals and so THSL Careers  secured a weekly work experience placement for X at a local city farm. His roles included cleaning, feeding and grooming the animals.. This was followed by further work experience at a local private aviary where the tasks included cleaning and feeding the birds. Building on X’s interests,  THSL enrolled X on a day release course at the highly acclaimed Capel Manor for a weekly day release animal care course. Although X thoroughly enjoys his time there ultimately he felt he would like to pursue a career as a teaching assistant. 

To broaden his school work placement experience X is currently in a successful placement with another local school which also caters for students aged 5-19 with a primary diagnosis of autism. This has reinforced X’s wish to work with young people in an education setting and X plans to enrol on a Level 1 Childcare course next year with Barnet College.

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The  Long Term Placement Experience - Increasing Self Belief and Self Esteem

Bespoke Cleaning Company


In Year 12 X began a weekly work experience with a local cleaning company, Bespoke Cleaning. The role was in an administrative support capacity and X undertook a great variety of different tasks including stocktaking and a complete reorganisation of the stock room, learning about health and safety procedures and testing electronic equipment, calling third party organisations and most notably acting as a mentor for a young person with MLD.  X excelled and began looking forward to attending each week.

At the same time X began a City and Guilds in Plumbing at Barnet

College where he performed outstandingly in all aspects of this course . X particularly enjoyed the practical elements and was often asked to demonstrate his skills by his tutor to his peers.   Both experiences developed confidence and skills and opened up further possibilities for X in mainstream settings. 

Towards the end of Year 12 X became motivated to pursue his dream of a career in Engineering further and applied for a Level 2 BTEC Engineering Course at Barnet College. The college however identified he would be better suited to the Level 3 BTEC award.  X is now in his first year of the course and plans to gain an engineering apprenticeship when he leaves school 

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