Hertfordshire LEP was announced as one of the second wave of 18 new and two expanded Careers Hubs, which will bring together local schools and colleges with employers, universities, training providers and career professionals, to improve prospects for young people through a relentless focus on best practice.

Following the successful launch of the first 20 Careers Hubs in September 2018, LEPs were invited to lead bids towards a share of a further £2.5m funding announced by the Secretary of State for Education. This follows news last year that careers support was improving across England and is now strongest in disadvantaged areas.

Just over 1,300 secondary schools and colleges (around a quarter of those in England) will now benefit from being part of a Careers Hub. This entails access to support and funding, including an expert ‘Hub Lead’ to help coordinate activity and build networks, a central fund to support employer engagement activities, and training for a ‘Careers Leader’ in each school and college.

Norman Jennings, Operations Director at Hertfordshire LEP, said: “The Hertfordshire Careers Hub will complement the LEP’s thriving Enterprise Adviser Network programme, which works to strengthen links between local schools and businesses. The Hub will provide schools with intensive support and tailored guidance to ensure our young people are given the best possible start to their working lives.

“The response locally has been strong, with 20 out of 26 schools across Stevenage, North Herts and Welwyn Hatfield districts backing our ambition for the Careers Hub so far: a testament to the strength of our bid and the collective will to better support and develop Hertfordshire’s future workforce.”

Thomas Alleyne Academy, based in Stevenage, will be the nominated lead school for the Hertfordshire Careers Hub, acting as advocate for the Hub and setting the benchmark amongst other local schools.

Gareth Dace, Careers Hub Manager at Hertfordshire LEP, said: “Thomas Alleyne Academy have been one of the most engaged and proactive schools within our Enterprise Adviser Network. It is consistently the highest achieving school across Stevenage and North Herts in terms of the Gatsby Benchmarks and provides a fantastic example of good practice.”

Mark Lewis, Headteacher at Thomas Alleyne Academy, said: “We are delighted that Hertfordshire has been selected for a Careers Hub. Our school has embedded innovative employer engagement at the heart of its strategic development plan, which has brought forth a fantastic range of opportunities for our students. We look forward to working closely with other schools to improve careers education across the whole of Hertfordshire.”

Schools and colleges in the first wave of Careers Hubs are already outperforming the national average across all aspects of careers education. After two terms, schools and colleges that are part of the first wave of Hubs are:

  • outperforming the national average on every one of the eight Gatsby Benchmarks of good careers guidance
  • the majority (58%) are providing every student with regular encounters with employers
  • the majority (52%) are providing every student with workplace experiences such as work experience, shadowing or workplace visits

Improvements are strongest in disadvantaged areas including in Careers Hubs located in Tees Valley, Lancashire, the Black Country and Liverpool City Region.

Damian Hinds, Secretary of State for Education, said: “It is so important that young people get to see and know about a range of different jobs and careers so they can see the possible opportunities out there. Good careers education is such a valuable asset that helps children to explore future possibilities and go on to lead happy rewarding lives.

“This investment will give thousands more young people access to expert careers guidance as they take those first exciting steps into their future."

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