The Careers advice service in school adheres to the Provider Access Legislation (PAL) which came into effect in January 2023 and aimed to strengthen the existing legislation from 2018 (the Baker Clause). Careers advice provided in school for all students in Years 7 to 11:

  • Is offered in an impartial way without bias or preference towards any specific institution, education or work area.
  • Includes the range of training and education options, including technical education and apprenticeships.
  • Is delivered in a way which considers what is in the best interest of the students concerned.

We meet the minimum requirements for pupil encounters with providers of technical education and apprenticeships. You can view full details of our Provider Access Policy here.

Year 8 to Year 11 pupils are entitled to a minimum of four provider encounters; two encounters during Years 8 and 9, and a further two encounters during Years 10 and Year 11. You can view our detailed careers plan for 2023/24 here.

More details about meaningful encounters for our pupils can be found here.

Our school-based Careers Leader, Mrs Bulger, provides two days of support every week on a Wednesday and a Thursday. Mrs Bulger co-ordinates our in-house careers programme, external visits and preparation for Post-16 options.

We also commission independent careers advice; Geraldine Brannelly is a Level 6 qualified independent, professional Careers Advisor based in school every Wednesday and Thursday.

All careers advice and guidance is given in person centred, impartial, unbiased and confidential (within legal confines) and also meets professional standards of practice. All students can request a 1:1 appointment with the Careers Advisor at any time. All students in Year 10 will attend a careers interview. Students in Year 9 who are choosing GCSE Options are offered the opportunity of a careers advice appointment with regards to Options and their future subject and career choices. All Pupil Premium and SEND students are prioritised where required to provide additional support and advice tailored to their specific needs

Careers drop-in sessions are available two days a week at lunchtimes in The Careers Hub, with the Careers Leader or the Careers Advisor. Students can go along to ask for advice about courses and apprenticeships, pick up careers literature to take home, get help with their applications and find out about local careers events. The drop-in sessions are open to all students and no appointment is needed.

You can view a list of Open Events for local sixth forms and colleges for 2023-24 here.

You can view our one-page guide showing our careers activities and plans here.

Careers programme

The school’s careers programme for this year can be accessed below.

Careers Programme 2023-24

Our careers programme is reviewed and updated on a regular basis throughout the academic year as required. The next scheduled date for review of the careers policy and plan is September 2024.

In Year 7, students take part in a range of “Futures” talks, presentations and activities in all subject lessons. These are designed to connect skills and knowledge learnt in the classroom to future jobs and careers. This is co-ordinated by the school's Careers Working Party which is made up of teachers in all subject areas and careers staff.

In Year 8, students are introduced to the Careers Team and the support provided in school. Careers input continues during our “Learning for Life” sessions, where students are encouraged to start to think about what they might like to do in the future and how they will get there. In the Learning for Life Session in April, a technical training provider will run careers sessions providing information about T Levels and Apprenticeships, with interactive activities and time for Q&A.

Year 9 students receive additional careers advice and support when choosing their GCSE Options. They attend a series of Options talks and assemblies in January which include advice about how to make decisions, the different pathways available to them and how GCSE subjects link to post-16 routes.
Year 9s also receive careers input at the “Learning For Life” sessions which are held in school throughout the year. Activities include employability and skills workshops with external careers companies. We invite employers, colleges and training providers into school to talk to students, for example, Year 9 girls attend a careers talk with the RAF.

We are once again planning to take a group of Year 9 students who selected Hospitality and Catering courses for their GCSEs to visit the Buxton Crescent Hotel on a careers trip. They will met staff, learn about how a hotel works and the different types of jobs available. All Year 9s will also attend an extended assembly delivered by a technical training provider to learn about Apprenticeships and T Levels during National Apprenticeships Week in February 2024.

All Year 10 students attend an individual 40-minute careers interview and additional 1:1 appointments with either the Careers Leader or the Careers Advisor are available on request via Pupil Reception. As part of our commitment to preparing students for life beyond school, all Year 10 students participate in “Post-16 Week”. The normal timetable is suspended and all students engage in activities directly relevant to their future career path, widening their horizons and raising aspirations. The personalised programme is tailored to their likely progression route, with a mixture of skills development and self-reflection to help them make informed Post-16 choices. “Post-16 Week” activities and talks are designed to help students understand the range of technical training, Further and Higher Education opportunities available, and to get them to think ahead. These include:

  • Preparing a CV and personal statement
  • Decision-making skills
  • Employability skills
  • Types of courses and levels at Post-16
  • University education and different routes to Higher Education
  • Digital skills and Labour Market Information
  • Employer talks, including current apprentices and Chapel High alumni
  • Taster sessions and visits to local colleges and universities
  • Apprenticeships and T Levels workshops
  • Interview preparation and techniques

As part of “Post-16 Week”, we run an Employer Speed Networking Event, inviting over 20 employers into school to have an information stall in the hall. Year 10 students visit each stall in small groups to find out about the company/organisation, ask questions about the different types of jobs available and the qualifications and training needed. The event in June 2023 was a huge success, with employers attending from a wide range of different sectors. Other year groups were also invited to visit the hall to meet employers, ask questions and find out about job roles.

Year 10s are also encouraged to gain essential digital skills and to sign up to complete the iDEA online badges (Inspiring Digital Enterprise Award ). These are internationally recognised awards which students can put on CVs and application forms to demonstrate their digital skills. The project was launched in school by the careers team and IT Department. Topics for these digital awards include online research, e-safety, coding, social media, business and entrepreneurial skills.

We invite colleges/sixth forms, training providers and employers into school throughout the year to hold lunchtime drop-in sessions. Students can go along to talk about the courses and training on offer, ask questions and collect literature to take home. Any organisations who would like to do a drop-in session can contact Mrs Bulger to arrange this at

Students take part in taster visits to local colleges and universities to help them think ahead to Higher Education opportunities. All Year 10 students will have the opportunity to prepare their CV and experience a formal interview with a visiting employer.

Year 10 visits and taster days last year included Marple Sixth Form College, Macclesfield College and Stockport College. A group of Year 10s also visited Manchester Metropolitan University to take a campus tour, attend a presentation about Higher Education and to meet the university’s student ambassadors. This year we are also looking to combine this with a tour of another local university.

During Year 11 we ensure that all students have clear plans for their Post-16 and Post-18 routes, whether these be vocational or more traditionally academic. We provide intensive individual support to all students with their applications and interviews.

In September 2023 we held a “Post-16 Evening” for Year 11s and their parents. This began with a talk from the Headteacher and a local college representative covering post-16 options, types of courses and levels, training, decision-making and the application process. We invited a wide range of sixth forms, colleges, employers and technical training providers to have information stalls in our dining area. This gave parents and students the opportunity to meet a large number of post-16 providers directly, ask questions and take further information to research at home.

All Year 11 students learn how to prepare for interviews and will experience a formal interview situation with a visiting employer during our Mock Interview days in October.

A Careers presentation is circulated to all students as part of the weekly tutor time activities. Content includes a "Job of the Week" with details about a spotlight job and the qualifications and experience needed, a live job vacancy and Labour Market Information. It also contains details about local post-16 events, apprenticeships and news.

We invite colleges, sixth forms, technical training providers and employers into school throughout the year to take part in our careers activities, hold lunchtime drop-in sessions, and special careers assemblies. During lunchtime drop-in sessions, students can go along to find out more about the providers’ courses, apprenticeships and training on offer, ask questions and collect literature to take home. Any organisations who would like to arrange to come into school can contact our Careers Leader, Mrs Bulger, to arrange this at or call 01298 813118.

Post-16 providers and employers who have come into school for careers events and activities during the last 12 months include:

  • Access Creative College
  • Army
  • Aquinas College
  • Blue Grass Purple Cow Nurseries
  • Breedon
  • Buxton & Leek College
  • Buxton Crescent Hotel
  • DEBP (Derbyshire Education Business Partnership)
  • Debut Studios Sixth Form
  • Department for Work and Pensions
  • Derbyshire Constabulary
  • Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service
  • DJS Research Limited
  • East Cheshire NHS Trust
  • Elevated Knowledge Engineering Training
  • Hazel Grove Sixth Form College
  • Hope Valley College
  • Kier Group
  • Knox and Devlin Veterinary Surgeons
  • Myerscough College
  • Nestlé Waters
  • NFU Mutual Derbyshire Peaks and National Farmers Union
  • Macclesfield College
  • Marple Sixth Form College
  • Peak Mortgages and Protection
  • RAF
  • Reaseheath College
  • Röchling Fibracon Limited
  • Rotaflow
  • Royal Navy and Royal Marines
  • Stockport College
  • Stockport County FC
  • Swizzels Matlow Limited
  • Tarmac
  • Tenneco
  • The Manchester College
  • The University of Oxford
  • Xaverian College

National Apprenticeships Week - Every year the Careers Team runs a number of activities during this week to raise awareness of apprenticeships. This includes lunchtime drop-in sessions with apprenticeship training providers and employers, special assemblies, vacancy bulletins, employer visits and presentations.

The careers team attend Year 9, Year 10 and Year 11 Parents’ Evenings and Options Evening.

If you have any queries about our school careers programme, please contact our Careers Leader, Mrs Bulger, at or call 01298 813118. 

Monitoring, Evaluating and Review

We regularly measure our careers programme against the eight Gatsby Benchmarks to make sure we meet the required standards and to ensure continuous improvement. The eight Gatsby Benchmarks of Good Career Guidance are:

1. A stable careers programme
2. Learning from career and labour market information
3. Addressing the needs of each pupil
4. Linking curriculum learning to careers
5. Encounters with employers and employees
6. Experiences of workplaces
7. Encounters with further and higher education
8. Personal guidance

Students taking part in careers activities, events and trips are asked to complete evaluation and feedback questionnaires so that effectiveness, progress and continuous improvement can be monitored. This is followed up with individual students where necessary and fed back into the planning process for future activities. Staff are also part of the evaluation process, feeding back on careers talks and events, as well as suggestions for content. We also welcome feedback from post-16 providers and employers to help us to review activities and resources, and to ensure that our careers programme is up-to-date and relevant to the local jobs market.

Our independent Careers Advisor sends every student a feedback form after their careers interview appointment. This asks them to rate the quality of the appointment, indicate how it has helped them to think about their future choices and where improvements could be made. This enables us to monitor the effectiveness of careers interviews and make adaptations to the service as required.

The CEIAG policy is reviewed regularly; this allows us to incorporate new initiatives. The review involves the Governing Body, Senior Leadership Team, Careers Leader and our independent Careers Advisor. We monitor and evaluate our careers programme on a termly basis via the Careers & Enterprise Company’s online audit system, Compass. This reporting helps to recognise our successes and areas for improvement against the Gatsby Benchmarks as well as national and local scores.

You can view our latest Compass Audit here.

The Careers Leader works closely with the Enterprise Co-ordinator from the Careers & Enterprise Company to identify and implement new opportunities for students. The Careers Leader also attends conferences with other Careers Leaders in schools and colleges in the region. This ensures that the school is in regular contact with similar careers professionals who can share good practice, careers resources and events.

We also measure success throughout the academic year by collating Intended and Actual Destinations data for Derbyshire County Council, as per the September Guarantee, which requires local authorities to find education and training places for 16 and 17 year olds. We match this against activities students have taken part in at school to measure impact. The collection of this information includes the intended career area and types of education/training, level of study, STEM subjects and offer/attendance status.

Provider Access Policy

This policy statement sets out the school’s arrangements for managing the access of providers to the school for the purpose of giving them information about the provider’s education or training offer. This complies with the school’s legal obligations under Section 42B of the Education Act 1997. We have also responded to the new careers legislation for January 2023 and updated our careers programme accordingly.

Pupil entitlement

All pupils in years 8 to 11 are entitled:

  • to find out about technical education qualifications and apprenticeship opportunities as part of a careers programme which provides information on the full range of education and training options available at each transition point
  • to hear from a range of local providers about the opportunities they offer, including technical education and apprenticeships – through options events, assemblies, group discussions and taster events
  • to understand how to make applications for the full range of academic and technical courses.

For pupils of compulsory school age these encounters are mandatory and there will be a minimum of two encounters for year 8 to 9 pupils and two encounters for year 10 to 11 pupils.

These provider encounters will be scheduled during the main school hours and the provider will be given a reasonable amount of time to, as a minimum:

  • share information about both the provider and the approved technical education qualification and apprenticeships that the provider offers
  • explain what career routes those options could lead to
  • provide insights into what it might be like to learn or train with that provider (including the opportunity to meet staff and pupils from the provider).
  • answer questions from pupils.

Meaningful provider encounters

One encounter is defined as one meeting/session between pupils and one provider. We are committed to providing meaningful encounters to all pupils using the Making it Meaningful checklist.

Previous providers

In previous terms/years we have invited the following technical providers from the local area to speak to our pupils:

  • Access Creative College
  • Buxton & Leek College
  • Elevated Knowledge, Engineering Apprenticeships
  • Macclesfield College
  • Myerscough College
  • Reaseheath College
  • Stockport College
  • The Manchester College

Destinations of our pupils

In 2023 our Year 11 pupils moved to range of providers in the local area after school:

Management of provider access requests

A provider wishing to request access should contact Mrs Catriona Bulger, Careers Leader, by email ( or by telephone via the school office 01298 813118.

Opportunities for access

The school offers the four provider encounters required by law and a number of additional events, integrated into the school careers programme (please see Careers Plan for full details of our careers activities). We will offer providers an opportunity to come into school to speak to pupils or their parents or carers. Please speak to our Careers Leader to identify the most suitable opportunity for you.

Premises and facilities

The school will make the main hall, classrooms or private meeting rooms available for discussions between the provider and pupils, as appropriate to the activity. The school will also make available AV and other specialist equipment to support provider presentations. This will all be discussed and agreed in advance of the visit with the Careers Leader or a member of their team.

Meaningful online engagement is also an option and we are open to providers that are able to provide live online engagement with our pupils.

Providers are welcome to leave a copy of their prospectus or other relevant course literature at the Careers Hub, which is managed by the Careers Leader. The Careers Hub is available to all pupils at lunchtime careers drop-in sessions and at break times.

When visiting, providers will be asked to sign in at the school office, wear a visitor badge throughout their visit and bring a copy of recent DBS certificate as required. Providers will be accompanied by a member of school staff during their visit and will be expected to abide by the school’s safeguarding policy.


Any complaints with regards to provider access can be raised following the school complaints procedure or directly with The Careers & Enterprise Company via

Labour Market Information

Labour Marketing Information (LMI) gives us useful facts about jobs and careers, including average salaries, weekly hours worked, future employment prospects and the growth in particular areas. LMI also helps us to compare information about different jobs and can be a useful tool in identifying potential career paths.

You can click on the LMI “widget” below to find out about UK and regional averages for specific job titles. Just type in the job you are interested in and the widget will provide a series of options to help you learn about and compare jobs. For more details about Labour Market Information, go to You can also find out about business growth, LMI and economic performance for the region at the D2N2 data centre here

Actual Destinations data

As part of our agreement with Derbyshire County Council, we collect data about Year 11 ‘Destinations’ to confirm what our students go on to do when they leave school. The purpose of this is to make sure that all students go on to enrol and attend a form of post-16 study or training (this might be a course at college, an apprenticeship or another type of training). This process also ensures that help is made available to any student who has not secured a place for any reason.

We are proud to say that 97.9% of our Class of 2023 are now in full time education or training, or have started an apprenticeship with a local employer. They have secured places at a wide range of colleges and sixth forms, training and apprenticeship providers, as can be seen in the charts below. Our Actual Destinations figures are testament to our students’ determination, hard work and positive attitude.

Useful Website links
The official Government website for independent careers information, with advice and guidance on courses, training and work.
The official Government website for independent information about apprenticeships, with real case studies and live employer vacancies.
UCAS is an independent charity which provides advice about university study, including how to apply and entry requirements.
The Russell Group represents 24 leading UK universities. A useful website to help inform students’ A Level choices and degree options.
For information about upcoming college and university open days.
The UK's biggest graduate careers website. For information and advice on graduate employment and postgraduate course opportunities.

Find out about a range of careers and build your career profile.

Tomorrow’s engineers works with schools to inspire more young people to consider a career in engineering. For careers information, real case studies and a student Careers Quiz.

Screen Skills is the industry-led skills charity for the screen industries. Find out more about careers and apprenticeships, job profiles and advice on how to work in the film, TV, VFX (visual effects), animation and games industry.

Find out more about careers in the NHS and what type of job might suit you. With video stories, real life case studies and a Careers A-Z.

Creative Careers is an initiative run by Creative & Cultural Skills which aims to give young people more opportunities to work and learn in the creative industries. Contains job opportunities, detailed role profiles and careers events information.

An online resource created for future lawyers and the employers who recruit them. With a beginner’s guide to a career in law, information about work experience and the latest news in the legal profession.

For the latest news, live job vacancies and careers advice for those wanting to work in the sports industry.

This website features over 1,000 videos of real-life people taking about their careers, explaining what their job involves, career paths and what has influenced their decisions. It also includes labour market information (such as salary and qualifications) and the “Buzz Quiz” where students can explore links between their personality and work.

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