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Meadowside School

Inspiring brighter futures

Careers Education

Careers Lead- Ms Goalen,  contact via the school office:  

Careers Governor- Stephen Pearson

Information for Parents, Pupils and Teachers and Employers 

At Meadowside School we recognise the importance that a solid grounding in Careers will make to the future of all our pupils. Young people with learning difficulties need a co-ordinated and supported approach to following their ‘golden thread’ and work towards meeting their aspirations. As part of our Careers Programme have dedicated careers lessons delivered to all pupils in our Formal pathway twice a week from Y7 to Y14; these help our learners understand their place in the world of work.  One lesson is used to deliver learning of the Curriculum and the additional weekly lesson to support Action Planning, CV writing and taking part in their own Transition Plan documentation as well as addressing life skills and knowledge gaps such as telling the time, tying shoelaces, working with money etc. Careers is supported by Senior Leaders, has a named Governor, a Careers Lead (teacher) and an Independent Careers Advisor. Pupils in our Pre Formal and Semi Formal pathways learn about Careers in a topic based programme linked to life skills.This is all accredited under AQA Unit Awards Scheme. 

Our Careers Lead works closely with Merseyside MSLD group, the Growth Platform, CEC and area Careers Hub to extend opportunities, share best practice and keep up to date.  We have a CEC Careers Advisor and Careers Coordinator. Relevant staff have had training using Talentino resources. We work closely with employers and a range of destination providers.

Our strategy for Careers is to prove a personalised service which meets all the criteria for the Gatsby Benchmark by offering:

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

Further information on Gatsby can be found here 

We use COMPASS + to assess to what extent we have met Gatsby benchmarks. Our Compass report is updated termly and informs our Action Plan for the Year ( Highlighted on the  Meadowside Careers Programme Gatsby  Evidence Document below) Please click on link below to view latest COMPASS report.

Most Recent Compass Audit Report March 2024. Evidence Verified by LCRCH Enterprise Coordinator  Charlotte Lawrence and witnessed by Careers Lead Governor Stephen Pearson   - see link at bottom of page 

Careers Curriculum

At all levels we ensure that pupils can access and build upon a greater understanding about employment. For our pupils with very complex needs, that might mean recognising uniform and understanding that some people have a job; PMLD pupils work on Talentino based Careers projects.  For more able pupils it might mean developing a Curriculum Vitae and personalised career plan.  In KS3 we learn through role-play and reflection, looking at wider areas such as our community and being safe at work. In Key Stages 4 and Post 16 the focus is on learning what skills are needed for specific jobs, how to create your own careers pathway and planning for adult outcomes.  Teaching is adapted in each lesson so that pupils maximise their learning. Our Read, Write  Inc Phonics programme is used in all Careers lessons to support and underpin reading, writing and understanding.  

All Subject leaders embed careers into their long and medium term planning. What this means for pupils is that they learn how different subject areas may lead to different careers which helps them contextualise the world of work. For example, in PE they will learn about Sportspeople and different jobs in Sport.  Pupils learn about traditional careers as well new careers paths linked to technology and ‘future’ jobs that do not yet exist. Individual subjects also arrange for employer/employee visits within their areas such as the recent visit by the Author, Suzanne T Schroder to the English Department. 

Information for Teachers 

Find out about apprenticeships

Find out about Supported Internships

Find out about Careers in your subject area

Qualifications and Accreditation

 UPDATE *** Since the removal of the PSE qualification by AQA (August 21) there is no longer a qualification to accredit PSHE/Careers/Citizenship.  Meadowside School has designed their own PSE Award, Certificate and Diploma. Differentiated Unit Awards (AQA UAS) combining Careers, Citizenship and PSHE enable pupils to make progress from Pre entry Level up to Level 1 between Year 10 and Year 14. 

Click here for information about AQA Unit Awards ..

Work related Learning

Where appropriate, most pupils will take part in at least one extended period of work experience during their time at Meadowside.  We offer a 4 phase range of different experiences starting with an on site 'apprenticeship', moving on to external group work experiences and when pupils are confident individual work experience emplacements with fading TA support.  These placements include working at Best Bites, Dale Farm, Wirral Car Hospital and placements in partner schools. We always welcome support from new employers, please contact the school if you are able to offer our pupils work experience in your setting.

Click here for the Woodchurch High School website 

Click here for Mersey Car Hospital website 

Post Covid, pupils have had limited real life experiences in the community and workplace. As such, from September 2021 Pupils in Y10 and above now have  additional group-based work experiences to choose from as part of the work related learning option.  A weekly Community Café  run alongside Holy Cross Church where pupils make and serve drinks and small food items in the community hall.  A volunteer programme at a local care home  where pupils attend for one session per week and take on various volunteering roles.  A programme at a local community farm based at Woodchurch High School. A programme volunteering on National Trust  land at Royden Park

Click here to see Church Activities dates and times

Where possible pupils are matched with personalised work experiences in KS4 and Post 16 which relate to their named aspirations in their EHCP. This is in addition to their group work experiences. Examples of this could be working in a charity shop, working at Best Bites Café, Mersey Car hospital. 

In 2021/2022 we set up an in-house Meadowside apprenticeship scheme to allow pupils who are less able to find an appropriate personalised experience and opportunity to shadow and support staff on site. Examples of this are Caretaker's Assistant and Art Technician. During 2022 and 2023 we are building upon this. 

Futures  Week

Each academic year we hold a ‘futures week’ for KS4 and KS5. This is topic based and led by pupil voice to meet the interests of most pupils. During Futures Week  week pupils may visit colleges of further education and other providers,  work places, places of interest, and have on site ‘speakers’. The aim of the week is to broaden pupils' horizons and give them a wider bank of information so that when they come to making choices about their lives after Meadowside they have a better understanding of where their skills would be best used.  This is underpinned through the Careers Programme via the Provider Access Statement. 

Independent Careers Advice

All our pupils have EHC plans and as such have an annual review supported by school, parents and the Local Authority. Independent advice is sought at review meetings through our Independent Careers Advisor Katherine Magnall. Katherine is well known to pupils through review, skills week and work experience, as such she is able to offer independent, impartial advice guidance to all our pupils.

We have a programme with Wirral Metropolitan College to deliver advice on further education.

Each year we take part in a ‘Careers Fair’ held at Clare Mount Special School which offers pupils and parents access to a wide range of educational and alternative providers. Pupils also attend other provider fares such as at 'The Hive' and take part in a programme of visits to local providers. 

Other educational institutions are always welcome to visit the school and meet our pupils in order to give in depth information regarding appropriate courses and qualifications. If you would like to do so, please contact the school and ask to speak to the Careers Lead.

All pupils complete a ‘’ Transition Plan' with varying levels of support.  This helps them structure a careers path and choose the right advice and guidance from internal and external staff.  All their Careers experiences are documented on here to create a journey of their careers learning; and It is used as part of the pupil voice in EHCP Annual Reviews, where parent voice is added. Where pupils are unable or lack the confidence to attend their own annual reviews their 'voice' is included via video evidence prepared before the meeting. 


When pupils leave Meadowside they may choose to continue their education, move into an apprenticeship or employment; some pupils move to Autism Together. Please see the links below to access support and information. Supported Internships are available via Wirral Met. 

Please click on the links below for specific advice.

Local Colleges

Wirral Metropolitan College

West Cheshire College 

Reaseheath College 

Northop College

Vocational College Birkenhead

Apprenticeship advice

Government Advice on Apprenticeships 

Government guidance for apprenticeship applications 

Wirral Young Chamber of Commerce 

Pupil friendly advice on apprenticeships

Careers Advice

Career Connect ( careers advice ) 

Course finders 

Careers Advice for parents of young people with SEND

LABOUR MARKET INFORMATION  - information for parents and pupils

To support pupils who are able to join the workforce in the future, please see the labour market information link below. This gives details about all the services and information about the types of skills needed most in the North West.

Please the link at the bottom of the page for  local Labour Market information in addition to