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Ivy House School

Working together to;
Inspire, Nurture, Empower

Careers Information, Advice and Guidance

We follow the statutory duty for schools and colleges from the Department for Education (click here).

Careers Programme Information

Who to Contact

If you would like to discuss careers, post-19 provisions or next steps for your child then you should use the contact information below:

Ian Armstrong - Headteacher -  

Amanda Shipley - Associate Assistant Headteacher & Post-16 Teacher 

Jordan Thompson - Post-16 Teacher - 

You can also contact the school office on 01332 777 920 and somebody will get back to you as soon as they are able to.  

Our Careers Programme 

We plan a bespoke, exciting and innovative programme of careers for our learners, ensuring students have the opportunities to experience, participate and learn about the opportunities available to them when they leave school.

We understand that our students will leave Ivy House School with a range of skills and abilities and we strive to ensure that they are well equipped for their next steps into adulthood. We use a range of strategies to achieve this and you can find out more information through our Curriculum pages, as well as the points raised below. 

All students are additionally supported on an ongoing basis by the teaching team who initiate regular conversations to encourage pupils to think about and determine their future choices. The school organises and hosts a Life After School event for all students and their families every year, inviting representatives from appropriate companies to attend, such as local employers, colleges, residential care services, day care services, support groups, leisure providers and job-seeking help. This acts as a ‘one-stop-shop’ for students and families to gather information on future options and opportunities and provides families and students with an opportunity to talk about the possibilities in the future and to ask questions in a safe space with familiar staff to support. This ensures that families are aware of where they can seek further help and support in finding suitable education, health or care support when their child reaches 18+. 

Finding their Motivation

From Year 9 onward we provide opportunities for young people to be involved in discussions about their individual aspirations for after they leave Ivy House School. These discussions will take place during classroom activities, as well as addressing them more formally within the Annual Review of the EHCP. 

These conversations provide teachers, and families, with a young person's preferred pathway and transition out of school. We do all that we can to provide opportunities to teach our students to be prepared for their final destination, including working alongside external colleges and day care centres. 

The Careers Curriculum

Our secondary department support students to learn about jobs that people do within the wider community and to gain a wealth of experience to help them decide which path they wish to choose when they leave school. All young people need to know that they can contribute to their community in some way.

Due to the complex health needs of a large proportion of our children, we are sensitive to the needs of the young person and their family. We offer holistic skills in supporting their steps into adulthood and align the outcomes from their EHCP into meaningful and realistic targets for adulthood. Or staff team are well experienced in supporting the transition out of school and have excellent relationships with local charities and agencies who can further support. 

Key Stage 3

Key Stage 3 students experience the world of work through a range of enterprise activities within school such as cake sales, making and selling crafts and organising activities for charitable days throughout the year. 

The work based learning opportunities are often linked to the curriculum (pre and semi formal) and teachers select the most appropriate access points to these through careful planning that is linked to each student's assessments and previous learning.

All progress is evidenced through Evidence for Learning. 

Key Stage 4 and 5

Key Stage 4 students build on the foundation of Key Stage 3 and in addition they begin to gather evidence of work experience opportunities through beginning the Branch Curriculum using RARPA (Recognising and recording progress and achievement) assessment. Study programmes are designed to be relevant for every student, regardless of ability and complexity of need. 

Where possible, we have offered external work experience placements for students working within KS4/5. For those students where this process is not appropriate, alternative provision will be made, such as one off placements, supported placements and internal work related experience in and around school.

Measuring Impact

School Progress

We use the SEND Gatsby Benchmark Toolkit for guidance in this area and to measure the progress students make in their careers education. We have evaluated our own progress on these benchmarks and set ourselves subsequent targets. To see our areas of strength and those for development please click here Ivy House Gatsby Benchmarks

Pupil Progress

We measure pupil progress through a range of assessments, including accredited outcomes at Key Stage 4/5, EHCP outcomes (shorter and longer term) and Key Skills. Further information can be found within our Assessment Results page on our website.

Preparing for Adulthood (PfA)

At Ivy House, we are committed to supporting all our students to successfully transition from school, which for most will be when they have completed Year 14. We work closely with Derby's Preparing for Adulthood team in the City Council. The PfA team support in the following way:

We work with young people with a diagnosed learning and/or physical disability who qualify for support under the Care Act 2014. Education and Healthcare Professionals can refer young people between the ages of 14 to 18 in preparation for support to start at the age of 18. We aim to support young people to achieve independent living skills and build stronger relationships within the community. We also work closely with families and professionals in meeting the young person’s individual needs. The Preparing for Adulthood team enables young people to have a bigger say in what support is provided and how it is delivered, encouraging a more personalised approach.

We involve the PfA team within the Annual Review process for students who are preparing to leave for their next destination. 

The Baker Clause

The Baker Clause is an amendment to the Technical and Further Education Act 2017 which states that schools must allow colleges and training providers access to all students in years 8- 13 to tell them about non-academic routes which are available to them.


In summary, all students at Ivy House School have opportunities to learn about opportunities to access alternative routes to employment, including vocational qualifications and apprenticeships via The Branches Curriculum activities which include; drop down days, assemblies, tutorials, work experience and the Life After School event where relevant.


This policy statement sets out Ivy House School’s arrangements for managing the access of providers to students at the school for the purposes of giving them information about the provider’s education or training offer. This complies with the schools legal obligations under Section 42B of the Education Act 1997 (Baker Clause) and that of the Skills and Post-16 Education Act 2022.

Student entitlement

All our students are entitled:

  • To find out about technical education qualifications and apprenticeships opportunities, as part of a careers programme which provides information on the full range of education and training options available at each transition point.
  • To hear from a range of local providers about the opportunities they offer, including technical education and apprenticeships – through focused open events including career fairs, university provider visits, group discussions and taster events.
  • To understand how to make applications for the full range of academic and technical courses.


Management of provider access requests


If a provider wishing to request access to pupils/the school, they should contact Amanda Shipley, Associate Assistant Head Teacher on  the following contact details:

Telephone: 01332 777920    



Opportunities for access

Varied events, integrated into the schools careers programme, will offer providers an opportunity to come into Ivy House to speak to students and/or their parents. These may include:


Examples of opportunities available for employers/providers to attend

All year

Attendance at annual reviews where identified by family/school staff

Attendance during Inspire sessions and immersive days 

Attendance at the school’s Life After School event


Attendance extended to small local companies during enterprise events – e.g Christmas and summer fair



External open event information is shared with relevant families

Attendance at the Shaw Education Trust led Careers fair 

Where the local authority have shared the local offer with families, Ivy House will support in any queries regarding course suitability, should the parents request this 


Premises and facilities

Should you wish to join any of the events Ivy House School offers please get in contact with us to identify the most suitable opportunity for you.

The school will make our premises available to allow fair access between the provider and students, as appropriate to the activity.

Providers are welcome to leave a copy of their prospectus or other relevant course literature at our reception. These will be made available to students.