Skip to content

Careers – General

Miss. Lucy Giles

Careers Lead

Telephone: 07522448104 Email:

‘Our mission is to inspire all our students to make the best transition possible into the right choice for their next steps, whether that is employment, further or higher education and to support in the development of the skills needed to manage a fulfilling career in a changing world.’

At Ferndown Upper School, we are committed to ensuring that all of our students from year 9 to 13 have high quality, impartial advice on career opportunities meaning that they are able to progress onto the appropriate courses or employment upon them leaving the school. It is very important to us as staff to know that all of our leavers have a plan for their next step. Ferndown Upper School students are able to access a wide range of high-quality education and training across the different subject areas during Years 9,10,11, 12 and 13. Careers Education is so important to us that we begin our careers input with all our Year 8 students in the local feeder schools. This includes activities on personal finance and the job market. In the past, Ferndown Upper School has been recognised for it’s commitment to Careers Education and Guidance:

            – NCS Champion School
            – STEM Ambassadors Award
            – The Careers and Enterprise Company Award
            – RNLI Engineer Award

By following strict government guidance to ensure the quality of our Careers Education the school work towards achieving all 8 of the Gatsby Benchmarks:

1) A Stable Careers Programme
Every school and college should have an embedded programme of career education and guidance that is known and understood by students, parents, teachers and employers.
2) Learning from Career and Labour Market Information
Every student and their parents should have access to good quality information about future study options and labour market opportunities. They will need the support of an informed adviser to make best use of available information.
3) Addressing the needs of each pupil
Students have different career guidance needs at different stages. Opportunities for advice and support need to be tailored to the needs of each student. A school’s career programme should embed equality and diversity considerations throughout.
4) Linking curriculum learning to careers
All teachers should link curriculum learning with careers. For example, STEM subject teachers should highlight the relevance of STEM subjects for a wide range of future career paths.
5) Encounters with Employers and Employees
Each student should have multiple opportunities to learn from employers about work, employment and the skills that are valued in the workplace. This can be through a range of enrichment activities including visiting speakers, mentoring and enterprise schemes.
6) Experiences of Workplace
Every student should have first-hand experiences’ of the workplace through work visits, work shadowing and work experience to help their exploration of career opportunities and expand their networks.
7) Encounters with Further and Higher Education
All students should understand the full range of learning opportunities that are available to them. This includes both academic and vocational routes and learning in schools, colleges, universities and in the workplace.
8) Personal Guidance
Each student should have opportunities for guidance interviews with a careers adviser. These should be available whenever significant study or career choices are being made. They should be expected for all students but should be timed to meet their individual needs.

Destinations Data

At Ferndown Upper School, we are extremely proud of our previous students and what they have gone on to achieve in life. This is reflected through our destinations data for the last three years.

Destination2020 – 187 Students2021 – 196 Students2022 – 225 Students
Ferndown Upper School Sixth Form105102140
Other Sixth Form303
Full Time Employment  7
Moved Abroad334
Not Known/ NEET515

Our destinations data from the last three years demonstrates the number of students who choose to continue their post-16 studies with us at Ferndown Upper School Sixth Form. For information on joining our Sixth Form, please visit our dedicated Sixth Form website.

At the end of each academic year we will endeavour to update our destinations data for the previous three years.

Compass+ Reports

Each term the school completes a compass+ evaluation with our local enterprise adviser from the Careers and Enterprise Company. Following the 8 Gatsby Benchmarks, there is a set of 43 criteria to meet in order to achieve 100% in all benchmarks. Please see the table below for a breakdown of each of our Compass+ Evaluation results.
Jun-21 Nov-21 Mar-22 Jul-22 Mar-23 Jun-23
BM1 – A stable Careers programme 88% 94% 100% 100% 100% 100%
BM2 Learning from careers and labour market information 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
BM3 – Addressing the needs of each pupil 100% 90% 100% 100% 100% 100%
BM4 – Linking curriculum learning to careers 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
BM5 – Encounters with employers and employees 75% 75% 50% 50% 50% 50%
BM6 – Experiences of workplaces 0% 50% 62% 62% 75% 75%
BM7 – Encounters with further and higher education 87% 100% 95% 95% 83% 100%
BM8 – Personal Guidance 100% 50% 37% 75% 75% 75%
Every term our Careers Education provision is assessed by Dorset Council to track our progress towards the 8 Gatsby Benchmarks. Our results across the academic year have been combined and compared locally with other secondary schools as well as nationally. We’re so proud to announce that Ferndown Upper School is ahead of not only other local schools but other secondary schools nationally in 5 out of the 8 benchmarks.
FUS Dorset National
BM1 100% 92% 92%
BM2 100% 94% 93%
BM3 100% 94% 91%
BM4 100% 94% 92%
BM5 50% 89% 89%
BM6 62% 76% 79%
BM7 95% 84% 88%
BM8 75% 78% 88%

Key Documentation

Let's Get Connected!