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Our aim is to ensure all students have suitable and high quality work related learning opportunities to equip them to meet the challenges of life in our fast changing world. Up to-date relevant independent careers guidance and advice supports this programme.

The school’s careers information and guidance programme is supported by a strong partnership with Youth Connexions (YC) Hertfordshire and by its membership of the Enterprise Adviser Network run by the Careers and Enterprise Company. This initiative involves the support of the Manager of Blue Arrow in
St Albans who brings a wealth of experience from a recruitment perspective. Local employers and businesses covering a range of career pathways also support the school with talks, visits, and helping with interviews and applications.

In Year 7 students attend a day of Work Shadowing that is organised in collaboration with parents/carers.

During Year 8, the emphasis is placed on students making  make sensible and informed choices of GCSE courses to support their aspirations. Following input from subject leaders and an Options Information Evening for students and parents/carers, students are guided into making appropriate choices for Key Stage 4. Students are encouraged to bear in mind possible pathways through all aspects of education, training or employment.

In Year 9 &10, students follow a programme to broaden and deepen their understanding of issues to do with the world of work, business, enterprise, and citizenship. In year 10 all students are also prepared for a week of work experience in the summer.

During Year 11, students update their Curriculum Vitae in preparation for making applications. They also consider the various choices open to them at the end of Year 11, including further study, training apprenticeships or employment.

Lessons continue into Years 12 and 13, where the programme focuses on planning for life after school either for university, apprenticeships or employment in modern Britain. Advice and guidance provided is broad and comprehensive. It also includes support and practice with applications and mock interviews. Students are encouraged to use all of the valuable careers experience they have gained from younger years in seeking employment, further training, Further Education, or Higher Education.


Investor in Careers Award

We are delighted to announce that we are currently applying for the Investor in Careers Award.

Over the last year we have been working closely with Blue Arrow Recruitment Agency and Youth Connections who have support us in developing our careers policy to support our students with their future.


Call the National Careers Service helpline for information and advice about jobs, careers and training if you’re 13 or older in England.

National Careers Service helpline

Telephone: 0800 100 900

Text messages: 07766 413 219

Textphone: 0800 096 8336

Monday to Sunday, 8am to 10pm

Find out about call charges
You can also arrange for a National Careers Service adviser to call you – this won’t cost you anything.


Hertfordshire labour market overview

Everything you need to know about Hertfordshire’s labour market including key statistics, current challenges and opportunities.


KS3 Careers

Personal Electronic Careers File

At Key Stage 3 students have an electronic careers file that they use to record achievements and skills gained throughout year 7,8 and 9 that they can update regularly.

Work Shadowing

In year 7 all students take part in work shadowing - where they follow and observe parents or relatives in the workplace for a day

Tenner Challenge

In year 7, 8 and 9 students take part in the Tenner challenge - where they set up their own business with a £10 start up capitol, they are given 4 weeks to make as much money as they can. They give half of their profits to charity and get to keep the rest.


Useful Websites

  • For Information about University Technical Colleges see www.utcolleges.org
  • The articles pages of www.icould.com contain information and advice about choosing GCSEs. Students can explore careers videos linked to school subjects on the same website. Look under Articles > Career ideas, job profiles and subjects > Starting points
  • Further advice on the link between GCSEs and university is available in the ‘Get Advice’ section of www.whichuniversity.co.uk
KS4 Careers

Year 10 Careers Carousel

In February each year we host 20+ employers who come to talk to our students about various careers and the skills and qualifications needed for them.This is a good way for students to get more of an insight of what is needed to pursue particular careers.

Year 10 Work Experience

30TH Apr – 4th May 2018

During the week, all Year 10 students will experience doing a real-life job in a placement they have chosen.

There are two ways of finding a placement:

1. Students can apply for placements offered on the database provided by Youth Connexions Hertfordshire. All students have been given a pin number and instructions to access the website.

2. Students can arrange a “private placement” with a willing employer. In this case, the relevant Private/Own Placement form needs to have been completed and returned to school so that the placement can be thoroughly vetted. Forms should reach school by the end of January to guarantee being processed.

Once applications are successful, students will receive a job offer consisting of the job details, a consent form, and a medical form. The latter two must be completed and returned to school as soon as possible. Only then can we confirm the placement. If they are not returned, the placement may be offered to another student.

We ask for a donation of £15 towards the cost of the service (the school is charged significantly more than this per pupil and we could not afford to offer Work Experience without parental contributions). Any placements outside Herts incur a further charge to us, often about £15, which we have to pass on to the student, unfortunately. Cheques should be payable to Townsend School. No payment is needed until you have been offered a place.

Students are encouraged to see Mrs Wood, the Work Experience Co-ordinator, if they have any questions. Mrs Wood is regularly available in the Discovery Centre, usually during Monday lunchtimes but sometimes on other days too. There is always a notice in the Discovery Centre stating when she will next be in. Of course any messages to Mrs Wood between visits will be dealt with as soon as she can.


Year 11 Interviews

Students get to experience an interview with staff from Blue Arrow Recruitment Agency to feel what a real job interview will entail and receive feedback on their techniques.

Useful Websites