Careers (CEIAG)

At Icknield High School, we encourage our students to always look towards the future. We are dedicated to helping young people create a foundation that will allow them to prosper after they graduate and look forward to a thriving and enduring career life.

Our students have access to high quality Careers Education, Information, Advice and Guidance (CEIAG), a comprehensive programme that aims to support them in exploring the breadth of opportunities beyond high school, learn about skills, expectations of the working world and how to utilise their curriculum learning to achieve their goals. For greater success, we expect students to take responsibility of their own career plan and take advantage of all the resources and events, provided and organised by our staff and career links.

By the end of Year 11, we hope that our students will be able to make informed decisions on the boundless opportunities, post 16.

Please click below to skip to the relevant section;

Post 16 Information

Average Point Scores – New Grading System

Labour Market Information

Careers Guidance

Employer Engagement

University Workshops and Visits

Luton Investment Framework (LIF)


Information for Parents

Destination Figures

Contact Us


Post 16 Information

Effective since the 2013/2014 academic year, the Government established the law that all young people must remain in education or training until they reach 18 years of age. So what options are available for our student and how can we prepare them?

The start of Year 11 marks a crucial time, to begin careful consideration of potential routes after high school. Whether it is A Levels, vocational qualifications or apprenticeships; what better way to explore options than visiting some of the local post 16 providers.

College & Sixth Form Open Days & Assemblies 2017/2018

Colleges & Sixth Forms are now hosting a series of open days, inviting students and parents/carers to see what they have to offer and answer any questions they may have.

Follow the link for a list of local Open Days, tutors should also have a copy displayed in class. Some colleges may require you to book your place to attend, should this be the case, please register on their website (links are included in the list).

Students will also be able to meet some of the providers, during our school assemblies. College and Sixth Form representatives are invited to help students gain a better overview of what their establishments have to offer and will advise students on important information, i.e. entry requirements and application deadlines. Apprenticeship information will be delivered by our partners at SEMLEP.

See here for a list of Post 16 Assembly Dates.


Growing increasingly popular, apprenticeships are the alternative to the traditional college pathway. Working alongside experienced staff, apprentices will gain practical training and job specific skills development, whilst given time to study for their role (usually once a week). Whilst training with a provider, apprentices will also be entitled to earn a wage and receive holiday pay; earn as you learn.

Students have the chance to attend apprenticeship fairs and will receive related resources i.e. live apprenticeship vacancies, through their tutors and their school email, so please be alert!

For more information on what it means to be an apprentice and how to apply, please visit the following sites:


Average Point Scores (APS)

From 2017, schools will no longer be assessing GCSEs using the A*-G grading system, instead we are progressing to the 9-1 point scale (9 = 9 points, 1 = 1 point).

See below for the numerical equivalent of the old system:

New Grading Structure (9-1) Old Grading Structure (A*-G)
9 A*
7 A
6 B
5 C
4 D
3 E
2 F
1 G
0 U

Students can work out their attainment scores, simply by adding all their points and dividing by the number of GCSE subjects they have taken.

Entry requirements to colleges/sixth forms are all based on this new system, e.g. to apply for A-Levels you must achieve a minimum GCSE score of 4.2. Entry requirements may vary, so please check with the post 16 provider.

For more information on this new numerical system, please visit:


Labour Market Information

Labour market information is important in keeping us up to date with the current economic and employment climate. The data allows us to see the growing industries predicted to expand their work force and the sort of labour available now and in the future. Students can use this information to forecast what job prospects are on the rise, average salaries and wages and what it could mean for their career plans.

The following are some useful website you could use to access labour market information:

“…providing career inspiration and information for young people. We show what is possible in work and offer different ways to think about careers…” – A simple to use and informative site, you can find out about average salaries in various fields and their past and future employment levels. Take the Buzz Quiz to find out which job best matches your strengths. They also offer advice to parents on how to best support their child through career planning.

“…provides information, advice and guidance across England to help you make decisions on learning, training and work.” – A straightforward and effective site, you will be able to browse through over 800 job profiles and find out about the skills/qualifications needed for the role, what the work is like, average salaries and wages and what the career prospects are.

“…experts in UK higher education data and analysis.” – Hesa is an organisation that collects, processes, and publishes data about higher education (HE) in the UK. Through this site, you can track the progress of HE graduates, the fields they have gone on to work in and the salaries they are making since leaving University.


Career Guidance

Careers Sessions

Students receive quality impartial career guidance from our associates at Luton Borough Council. These sessions are delivered to small groups, organised into occupational fields, where students sign up to one matching their interests. The experienced career advisors, provide relevant, essential information and counsel, to those seeking a specific career or educational route (e.g. demands and realities of the course/job, qualifications and qualities desired, alternative pathways etc.). Advisors ensure to answer all questions and tailor their delivery style, so that the needs of all students are met.

For a closer look at what the sessions entail and the feedback left by our students, follow the link to a review of our recent Career Sessions – November 2017 event.


Employer Engagement

Employer engagement is essential to our CEIAG programme, we believe that students have far better success after high school, when they have had encounters with post 16 providers and employers. These interactions, not only keep our students informed of opportunities but also promotes employability, and strengthens motivation for career progression.

Speed Networking

Our Year 7 and Year 8 students take part in speed career networking events, meeting with a series of diverse local employers for quick 1:1 sessions. For 5 minutes, students get to delve into the background of our guests, profiling their job role and exploring the motivation behind their work; when time is up, our pupils move on to the next employer.

These events introduces our less experienced students to professional interaction and sets the tone for them to begin thinking about their own career plans.

Click here to read about our latest event – Year 7 Employer Speed Networking Event – February 2018

Workplace Visits

Starting from September 2017, the school will no longer be taking part in the work experience scheme. With workplace learning remaining an important part of our programme, we will be delivering it in a direction that will better invest, in the significant relationship between curriculum learning and careers.

Our students will attend career/interest-specific trips with staff, to visit local and national employers linked to curriculum subjects. Employers will take the group for a tour and discuss the inner workings of their company, work place expectations and answer questions. Pupils will also be able to interact with employees and get an insight on the demands and qualities needed to work in a professional organisation.

Workplace visits are a fantastic method to encourage students to achieve high standards in their learning, as it contextualises future opportunities with their subjects. It highlights the importance of their education and demonstrates how they can capitalise on the skills and knowledge, they have or are developing in high school.


Barclays LifeSkills & Workshops

Barclays LifeSkills aims to equip students with 21st century work skills, to maximise opportunities when leaving education. They recognise that the lack of critical skills in students i.e. problem solving, proactivity etc. are putting them at a disadvantaged to others in a work place.

As a result, Barclays have created an online programme , not only to help students develop these areas but advise on assertiveness training, career path guidance and unveiling hidden strengths and qualities to help set up students for success. Simply sign up to LifeSkills and use the resources and virtual tools to your benefit!

LifeSkills volunteers are also invited to Icknield High to deliver interactive workshops on CV writing, interview preparation and techniques, featuring real-world examples. These sessions are highly effective in building pupils’ confidence and attitude to approaching job applications and interacting with potential employers.

For more information on Barclays LifeSkills or if you would like to sign up, please visit the following links:


Luton Investment Framework (LIF) 16×16 Young Person’s Programme

The Luton Investment Frame work 16×16 Young Person’s programme, is a collaborative project developed by the council, schools, further and higher education, partners and employers, to help prepare young people for success in the growing economy.

Over the coming years, there will be in excess 18,500 new jobs in Luton; many high skilled and above the average salary pay. This programme aims to raise aspirations and support young people in securing these jobs of the future.

The scheme targeted at 14-16 year olds, explores the 16 employability skills and experiences, or standards, which employers deem most valuable for students to possess, before leaving education.

The 16×16 Standard is achieved by completing 16 activities and meeting the criteria set. This includes:


Communication 1 A presentation/discussion/debate/group talk
2 Completed application and CV writing tasks
3 Develop a personal statement and complete situational judgement tests
4 Take part in realistic interviews
5 Represented the school/organisation in a positive manner
Teamwork & Leadership 6 Be part of a team
7 Demonstrate leadership skills
8 Attend an extra-curricular activity
Professional Conduct & Motivation 9 Take responsibility within school
10 Behaviour meets high standard expected by school
11 Take part in workplace experiences
12 Attendance punctuality and appearance in line with expectations
Skills 13 External visits – Career fairs/college taster days/university visits
14 Evaluate skills and behaviours
15 Skills extension and development linked to pipeline
Contribution to Community & Enterprise 16 Worked in the community/volunteering/fundraising/charity work


These standards help support the development of successful, confident learners and responsible citizens, promoting the growth of positive characters, an aptitude for work, literacy and numeracy and relevant work experience.

It is hoped, that every young person will be able to leave their place of learning, at 16 or 18, having met these criteria and rewarded with a Luton 16×16 Standard Certificate, a recognisable achievement among employers.

We are thrilled to be a part of this exciting new venture, supporting our students on their journey to a successful and rewarding career life.

Follow the link for a look at the Launch of the LIF 16×16 Young Person’s Programme – January 2018.


University Workshops & Visits

Students have the opportunity to visit numerous well-known universities, from subject tasters at the University of Bedfordshire to participating in the Pathway programme at the University of Oxford.

These visits allow for students of all backgrounds to get a glimpse of life in higher education and encourage our students to begin contemplation, on whether University is the right path for them. These are fantastic motivational experiences, which have proven to boost aspirations and attainment in school.

Examples of University workshops/events our students will attend include:

  • Computing & IT Taster days
  • Engineering Masterclasses
  • STEM & Forensic Science Sessions led by University professors/academics



The Skills Show – NEC Birmingham Trip

Our Year 10 and 11 students have the opportunity to visit the nation’s biggest skills and careers event. The Skills Show covers a massive variety of skills activities and careers advice, whilst giving students an opportunity to meet national employers and develop a more informed insight on routes into jobs (from apprenticeships to university), in addition to jobs of the future.

Click on the following link to see our recent trips to;

NEC Birmingham – Skills Show 2017

National Careers Week – March 2018

The Big Assembly – March 2018

The Big Bang Fair – March 2018

The LETS Apprenticeship Fair – March 2018

University of Bedfordshire – Computer Science Taster Day – May 2018

University of Oxford – Maths Girls’ Conference – April 2018

Places are usually limited, with only 50 students from each year group (10 & 11 only) offered the chance to attend.

If you would like to find out more about the event, please follow the link below:

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths)

STEM education refers to the academic disciplines of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, where teachings of rigorous concepts are combined with real world lessons, allowing students to apply knowledge into contexts and draw the connections between school, community, work and global enterprise.

With STEM literacy becoming increasingly important, we aim to prepare students to meet the rapid scientific and technological developments in our society and help ready them to compete in the new economy and follow rewarding and fulfilling careers.

Our STEM club, led by Ms S. Malik (Science) and Ms M. McCreadie (Maths), offer many activities and challenges which aim to help students cultivate problem solving skills, whilst building their confidence in conducting practicals and experiments.

Activities include:

  • Designing ping pong ball launchers – developing problem solving skills & introduction to physics behind projecting objects
  • Creating wind turbines – how the number of blades, affect the energy produced
  • Methane bubbles experiment – studying the different types of combustion
  • Biomechanical hands & building models – how locomotor and the organs in the hand work together to cause movement
  • Investigating epidemics and how they spread
  • Spaghetti & marshmallow tower challenge – competition in building the tallest building using the 2 materials, exploring how structures are built and how to increase stability
  • Exploring how the world works through chemical reactions


Information for Parents – Supporting Your Child in Making Post 16 Decisions

With rapid changes happening in education and work, it can be challenging for parents and carers to keep up to date on how they can support their child, in making important decisions. The following section aims to provide parents with advice and information on how to best accompany their child on their post 16 journey:

Careers Advice for Parents –

Careers Advice for Parents is a much recommended and useful starting point for parents, to explore informative and up to date advice on careers and careers options. The website looks at a broad range of topics, from Choices at 16, “Is It a Good Idea to Get a Degree?” to Money Matters and Understanding the Job Market.

The site also offers guidance to parents of children with SEN or EHC plans, providing clear guidelines and other useful links.

Parent Adviser –

Parent Adviser is another handy site, helping parents simplify the confusing process and finances involved in applying to higher education, helping your child choose the right course, league tables and alternatives to college and university. You can also sign up to the Parent Adviser Community and join the forum to discuss issues and share advice with fellow parents/carers.

Parental Guidance

Parental Guidance offers clear, concise and impartial information on the post 16 choices available. Led by experienced careers writers and advisers, this website is a helpful guide to parents, with useful articles, news and updates, from preparing applications and interviews to looking at labour market information.


College & Sixth Form Courses

To play a more active role in helping your child decide which college/sixth form is most suitable for them and their interests, it is advised to familiarise yourself with what courses they offer. For a course view of some of the local post 16 providers, please visit the following websites:

College/ Sixth Form Link to Course Guide
Luton Sixth Form College
Barnfield College
Cardinal Newman Sixth Form
Central Bedfordshire College


The Shared Learning Trust
Bedford College/Shuttleworth College
Oaklands College


Deadline for College & Sixth Form Applications (2018/2019)

All Year 11 students should have received hard copies of applications to colleges and sixth forms, with electronic copies sent to students’ school emails and their Show My Homework account (please ensure they check). Alternatively, students can visit Miss J. Lam in the Data Office for extras.

Certain colleges i.e. Central Bedfordshire College, only offer online applications; students must inform Miss J. Lam if they have made an online submission.

All hard copies of applications must be returned to Miss J. Lam or Mr Ahmed by Monday 8th January 2018.

PLEASE NOTE: Most deadlines specified by the providers are within the same time frame; we endeavour to submit all applications with plenty of time before these deadlines. However, some colleges and sixth forms (i.e. Harlington) may have earlier deadlines, it is then the students’ responsibility to check with the provider of their interest, to ensure they submit their applications on time.


Destination Figures

Destination measures allow access to clear and comparable information, on the success of schools in supporting their young people to take qualifications, that offer them the best opportunity to continue in education, employment or training. It also enables us to see which post 16 provider or pathway have attracted the majority of our students.

Parents can utilise these figures to help them make informed judgements about the performances of the colleges/sixth forms in the area, and use the information as a guide of what our previous students have chosen to pursue.

For the most up to date figures, please visit the links below:

Icknield High School – Destinations Overview (2013-2016)

Icknield High School – Destination Figures (2017)


Contact Us

Should you require further information or simply wish to address some questions, please do not hesitate to contact either Mr K. Ahmed (Careers Lead) or Miss J. Lam (Employer Engagement Co-ordinator), on the school number 01582 576561; the school will endeavour to support you and your child through this exciting and important journey.