GCSE Results Day 2018

Pointers to information, advice and alternative education and career pathways.

It’s exam results season and following last week’s A Levels, this Thursday, 23 August, is GCSE results day. Once again we’re right behind all the young people of Bradford District during what is a pivotal, nerve wracking moment in their lives. Good luck to them all! #ResultsDay2018

Students with results

A lot of hard work has been put in by GCSE pupils over the last two years. Everyone involved in their education - families, teachers and other professionals - also deserve recognition for their dedication and support.

Thank you to all staff involved, in any way, in helping our district's young people reach this gateway to their future.

Young people in England can leave school in the summer that they are 16. Then, until the age of 18 they must either:

  • stay in full-time education, for example at a college or school
  • start an apprenticeship or traineeship
  • spend 20 hours or more a week working or volunteering, while in part-time education or training

Bradford Council and our district partners are providing support to youngsters through this important life stage, as they transition from being older children to young adults.

The support we give to our current crop of GCSE pupils will continue after they have opened up their all-important letter.  Whatever results they get the opportunities available to them are numerous and varied and we can all play our part in helping them make a decision that will go a long way to determining their futures.

We and our foster carers also have a special interest in the futures of our looked after children. Every year around 40 looked after children take GCSEs. We're especially proud of the work they have put in and we're really rooting for them as they take this big step.

If you know any young people, whether through your work or volunteering, or through your home and family life, here is some useful information you can share.

First, if you didn’t get the GCSE results you were hoping for then there is plenty of information here which covers all the bases on what you can do next.

Study full time

We saw last week how A levels and technical qualifications can open up exciting careers pathways. You can study:

  • Subjects: A levels and other subject-based qualifications like International Baccalaureate (IB) and Cambridge Pre-U. These are good if there are subjects you like and want to study further, or if you are planning to go to university. You normally need to have at least five GCSEs at grades A* to C (or an equivalent qualification) and may need at least a grade B in any specific subjects you want to study. You can also download a useful tip sheet on choosing A level subjects.
  • Work and job-related courses: NVQs, BTECs, TechBacs and Cambridge Technicals are good qualifications to take if you want to combine hands on, practical learning with studying subjects and technical skills. They are specialist courses which relate to particular jobs, sectors, or subject areas. Depending on what qualifications you take, you can go on to further education, training, or employment, or you can go to university.

Shipley College and Bradford College, for instance, provide such courses in a range of specialisms.

Apprenticeships, traineeships and supported internships

You can also choose to train while you work by taking on an apprenticeship, traineeship or supported internship.

  • Apprenticeship: For anyone age 16 or over, you work for an employer and train to do a specific job at the same time while earning at least minimum wage. There are over 280 types of apprenticeship for over 1,500 job roles. See below for more details.
  • Traineeship: Gets you ready for work or for doing an apprenticeship. They last from six weeks to six months and provide essential work preparation training, literacy and numeracy skills and work experience to get an apprenticeship or other job. Locally, Aspire-Igen is a social enterprise which works with numerous organisations in education, training, employability and skills.  They can provide some really useful information and guidance.
  • Supported internship: Just for students with learning difficulties or learning disabilities who want to get a job and need extra support to do this. They last for at least six months and are unpaid. You get work experience and an employer trains you to do a job role. You also get to study for qualifications or other courses to help you get ready to take up a job.

More on apprenticeships - earn while you learn

In recent years, apprenticeships have become very popular and much publicised as an alternative career pathway.

Learn, earn and get hands-on experience at the same time. Apprentices can:

  • Get a real job and continue their education up to degree level.
  • Earn a competitive salary while all their training is paid for.
  • Gain hands-on experience and learn skills that employers want, helping shape their future career.
  • Choose from thousands of vacancies in a range of industries, from engineering to nursing, and law to design.

Information and a multitude of opportunities can be found both locally and nationally:

It's also a good idea to search social media using the following hashtags:

#ApprenticeshipsWork

#EarnWhileYouLearn

Careers and general advice

Of course, you may just want to go straight into full-time work. There's lot of careers information and advice out there, too much to list here, but here's a selection of the excellent services provided:

As you can see, there's plenty on offer so make sure any young people you know who are reviewing their options are made aware of the support that is available to them.

Good luck to them all!

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