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Employers and schools: how Mansfield is building a world of work approachThere is a keen interest in encouraging employers to engage with schools so that young people can learn more about careers, understand the skills that employers are interested in, broaden their aspirations and be motivated to succeed. Employer engagement in schools in England however is increasingly fragmented because of a loss of brokering infrastructure. This article describes a partnership approach developed in Mansfield where a consortium of local schools has worked with their business community and public sector organisations. Together they have listened to what young people say they both want and need to know about careers and then responded by providing a strategic careers learning programme. The particular contribution of the Mansfield Learning Partnership which is wholly funded by the town’s secondary schools is detailed in the article alongside elaboration of the Mansfield Framework for Career Learning which provides a work experience programme and several imaginative opportunities for young people to engage in meaningful encounters with employers,
'Girls into STEM and Komm mach MINT’: English and German approaches to support girls’ STEM career-related learningEuropean economies require STEM skilled people, yet compared with boys, girls demonstrate a tendency to reject some STEM study and STEM careers. This paper briefly reviews key factors that influence this phenomenon. It then introduces four examples of campaigns and initiatives that encourage girls to consider further participation in STEM in England and MINT in Germany as part of their career ambitions. Evidence of the impact of German initiatives is presented. It concludes that where there is a deliberate strategy linked with defined actions which tackle issues that are specific to girls, then gender imbalances can begin to change.
School organisation and STEM career-related learningThe aim of the research project has been to identify the range of factors that shape senior leadership team decisions with regards to STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) career-related learning. Evidence has shown that the support of school senior leaders and their organisation of STEM within the school is highly significant in determining the success of STEM in an individual school. This research points to the importance of management structures within schools which prioritise career-related learning and provide effective support for all teaching staff to play their part. The findings support schools investing in senior teachers to provide career-related learning for pupils. The report goes on to identify the factors influencing senior leaders in taking forward STEM career-related learning across their school. The report explores how schools can enhance their STEM career-related learning provision, both within their local context, but also in the context of shifting policy and infrastructure. It examines, in particular, commissioning career guidance services, staff development, and the role of school strategy. The report closes with a series of recommendations for schools to consider.