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DfE issues careers guidance and access for education and training providers

Updated guidance from the Department for Education (DfE) for schools and colleges on careers education and guidance has been issued. 

For the first time, it is now a single document for all secondary schools and colleges. You can read the full document here: Careers guidance and access for education and training providers

The guidance is of relevance to:

  • governing bodies
  • school and college leaders
  • career leaders and staff in maintained schools
  • academies
  • free schools (including alternative provision academies and free schools)
  • colleges (that provide secondary education and post-16 education)
  • local authorities that maintain pupil referral units

Statutory guidance is issued by law, schools must follow it unless there is a good reason not to. 

It applies to:

  • all students in school from year 8 to year 13
  • all students in college up to and including the age of 18
  • students aged up to 25 with a current education, health and care plan in place

The guidance is part of the Skills for Jobs White Paper, which contains the government’s vision to transform skills and training.

The Careers and Enterprise Company will provide external support to schools and colleges.

School leaders should note that there has been no change to careers legislation. 

Within the guidance document it states:

"The associated duties and equivalent requirements in funding agreements continue to rest with schools and colleges. 

"The department asks all maintained schools and academies to pay particular attention to their legal requirements under the provider access duty, commonly known as the ‘Baker Clause’, and make sure they have put in place arrangements to comply fully with this law.

"Schools must provide opportunities for a range of education and training providers to access all year 8 to 13 pupils to inform them about approved technical education qualifications and apprenticeships. Ofsted’s School Inspection Handbook has been updated to highlight the importance of schools understanding and meeting the requirements of this legislation, as careers information, education, advice and guidance is one of the key areas that informs inspectors’ overall judgements on personal development."

First published 19 July 2021