What is Developing the Young Workforce?
Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) is a seven-year programme (2014-2021) that aims to better prepare children and young people from 3–18 for the world of work.
This programme builds on the foundations already in place as part of Curriculum for Excellence.
Its headline aim is to reduce youth unemployment by 40% by 2021.
Education Working For All, the final report of the Commission for Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce, was published in June 2014.
The Government’s response to this report was published in the form of the Youth Employment Strategy in December 2014. The strategy includes milestones for the seven-year programme across all sectors, challenging schools, colleges and employers to embrace the recommendations and implement the measures required to effect lasting change.
The Youth Employment Strategy summarises the ambitions for local authorities, schools and their partners. For schools, these are summed up under the following key themes:
- Expanding the offer – increasing the route from schools into employment, or further education which is closely linked to employment
- Promoting and shaping the offer – engaging with young people, parents, teachers and practitioners, partners and employers
- Supporting teachers and practitioners to develop children’s and young people’s learning about the world of work
- Providing earlier relevant, labour-market focused career advice when young people need it, leading to better outcomes
- Embedding meaningful employer involvement
- Consolidating partnership working with colleges and other training providers
- Young people able to access more vocational options during the senior phase of secondary school, which delivers routes into good jobs and careers, developed through effective partnership between schools, colleges, local authorities and other partners
- Improving opportunities and experiences for all learners, with a focus on reducing gender imbalance on course take-up
- Development of foundation apprenticeships in schools
- Stronger partnerships between employers and education.
What does DYW look like at Williamwood?
Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) at Williamwood is fast evolving and aims to meet the needs of all pupils.
Here you will find examples of some of the various events that have taken place across the school:
Females into STEM in the Built Environment
In February 2017, girls from S1, S2 and S3 from across all seven East Renfrewshire secondary schools came together at Williamwood for a careers event with a difference.
The aim of the event was to allow girls currently undertaking their Broad General Education to consider whether their skills might be suited to a career in areas such as construction, property, technology and engineering.
They heard from leading business women on their career journey within these sectors, and took part in a structured networking session with industry representatives from companies including Doig and Smith, Taylor Wimpey and BAE Systems. The morning was rounded off with the girls competing in interschool groups, in an interactive workshop session involving a team challenge to design and build a tower from limited materials. Each member of the winning teams was awarded gift vouchers for their fantastic efforts.
The pupils loved the fact the event involved pupils from all of the secondary schools, and they all worked incredibly well together developing many skills. The visiting businesswoman commented how engaged all the girls were in the event, asking some fantastic questions and that they were all a credit to their schools.
The Energy & Service Assurance Manager for Matrix Energy Management was kind enough to share her feedback:
“Can I firstly say that personally I think this is a great cause to support and I can only hope that some of the girls we had the pleasure of speaking to decide to pursue a career path associated with the STEM subjects. This was the first time I’d been invited to help promote and encourage school age girls in this manner , although I must say after chatting to quite a few of the pupils they were a source of inspiration to me rather than it being the other way around. They were all a credit to their schools and themselves. “
It is recognised within these sectors that there is a gender imbalance and industry leaders are keen to address this by expanding young people’s understanding of the range of opportunities in the sectors beyond the traditional stereotype.
Health Careers Day
All pupils in S4, S5 and S6 with an interest in finding out more about careers in the NHS and health sector were invited to attend a hands-on workshop during our health careers day. Almost 180 pupils gained hands-on experience with an array of healthcare related equipment and materials, linked to 50 different fields found within the health care service. Pupils found the day extremely interesting and enjoyable, evidenced by many of them wishing the workshop lasted longer. Many thanks to Medical Mavericks for delivering this stimulating and inspiring workshop.
A record number of S6 pupils were accepted onto the Orbit business enterprise scheme this year. Pupils worked with a dedicated business mentor in setting up their own business, and have developed many skills for life and work along the way. During the weekly twilight sessions, held at a city centre location, pupils heard from leading businesspeople and had the opportunity to develop their own public speaking skills by pitching their own business plans.
Apprenticeship and trainee programme support
All apprenticeship vacancies are advertised on the school website and at year group assemblies. Pupils are also targeted via the pupil pathway planning survey that was collated from all pupils in S4, S5 and S6 in August of this session. Pupils are offered support with applications and creating CVs, with extra careers guidance where appropriate. Foundation Apprenticeships are being rolled out to as an option choice for S4 pupils this year. This two year programme runs alongside the vocational provision offered by our partner colleges where pupils will attend college and work based placement in S4 and S5. Pupils are offered the opportunity to attend relevant open days, such as GTG Training for all roles across the automotive industry, NHS apprenticeships and training and the Riverside Music Complex.