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Stoke-on-Trent finalist for National Careers Champion Award

From Monday 31st October, Steve Hargreaves will be featured on the Careers Champion website as one of six national finalists in the running to become Careers Champion 2016.

One of Steve’s most notable achievements has been his role in establishing Haywood Sixth Form Academy’s pioneering Work-Based Learning programme. The innovative curriculum model involves a four-week induction programme for students, followed by two days per week at Haywood Sixth Form Academy studying employability skills, Maths and English and three days per week completing work experience with a local employer, developing professional skills.

The Work-Based Learning option combines education and training with real, beneficial, work experience and is focused on giving students the skills and experience that employers are looking for.

Steve was nominated for the accolade by one of Haywood Sixth Form Academy’s Work Based Learning employer partners.

Alex Hope, executive manager at Qommunicate, said: “Last year Steve approached myself and a number of businesses in the local area to develop and deliver classes to teach students employability skills. It’s a new and innovative approach to careers work and I’m very pleased to be a part of it. The approach has worked – in its first year all Work Based Learning students have either moved on to become apprentices or to further education. I know that Steve has worked hard to help to achieve good outcomes for students both at Haywood Academy and Haywood Sixth Form Academy. He has gone above and beyond his duty to coordinate a range of careers events, work placements and trips for students.  This is why I nominated him for the Careers Champion Award 2016.”

In its first year, 76% of Work Based Learning students moved on to an apprenticeship and 24% moved on to further higher level studies.

Steve said: “The good feedback from employers and the thanks from students who have progressed always means a lot to me. I helped the school to achieve a 100% progression rate (to employment, education or training) for last year’s leavers, which is the benchmark I want to achieve every year. I already have great job satisfaction from my role at Haywood Academy and Haywood Sixth Form Academy, so to be nominated for this award is really the icing on the cake.”

Carl Ward, Chief Executive, City Learning Trust and Executive Headteacher, said: “Steve genuinely cares about giving our students the best possible start on their chosen career path. In addition to his work for Haywood Academy and Haywood Sixth Form Academy, he advocates the work of the Careers and Enterprise Company and the #Iwill campaign and is also a supporter the National Citizenship Service and helped to make Haywood an NCS Champion School. He recently became a member of the new Teachers Advisory Panel for Barclays Life Skills. I am certain that he will help all of these excellent programmes to flourish in the future, to enable more young people to become job ready and to help them to start promising careers.”

The winner of the Careers Champion Award will be decided by a public vote on the careers champion website. If you would like to vote for Steve Hargreaves, who is the only finalist from Staffordshire, you can cast your vote from 12noon on Monday 31 October until 3pm on Tuesday 8 November.

Steve concluded: “I am so thankful to have been nominated by one of our partner employers and I would really appreciate people’s votes. Should I be lucky enough to win, I would be happy to accept the Careers Champion Trophy on behalf of our whole school and sixth form and proudly display it in our trophy cabinet. I will put the careers resources prizes to good use with students at my school and will donate the voucher prize to ‘The Realise Foundation’, a local charity that helps young people to overcome barriers to employment.”

Students and parents wishing to find out more about the Work Based Learning scheme at Haywood Sixth Form Academy are invited to an open evening from 6pm-8pm, 23 November.

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