A Quote from The Department of Education regarding compulsory Work Experience for KS4 Students

‘Work experience placements’: used to describe work undertaken in a specific workplace over an extended period of time (this may be a block of time, such as a week or a fortnight, or a day a week over a number of months).’

At NHESC all our KS4 students Year 10 and Year 11 take part in a Work Experience placement weekly on a Wednesday as part of their timetables. The type of placements provided are usually working in a placement that the student has requested where possible. We try to place all students in work that is relevant and purposeful towards their personal development, employability skills set and a place to learn more about a particular trade.

For students studying Hospitality & Catering placements have been found in well-known food establishments in Hitchin and Letchworth such as Cawsburger and Chicken George. For students studying Hair and Beauty, placements have been found in beauty salons, Barbers and hairdressers for example: Amore in Hitchin, ‘Chop it like it’s Hot’ in Hitchin and Pebbles Beauty Salon. We have accommodated students in factories working with major local companies such as ‘Crane’ in Hitchin and supermarkets like Sainsbury’s in Letchworth.

Students have also been able to work at Doggie Day care Centres, Garden Centres, Primary schools, Day Nurseries, Care homes and Cafes across North Herts, and others have been fortunate enough to work with their parents or relatives.

The Work Experience programme is valued highly by the school, parents and the students as it offers opportunities that our students have traditionally missed out on and generally lack confidence in. We believe it prepares students adequately for the world of employment. We have seen student’s self-confidence, motivation and engagement in academic work increase following successful placements.

We have developed good links with independent employers locally who have been happy to provide a placement for students with specific interests or needs and this remains an area for further development. Our aim is to continue to build strong relationships with smaller independent businesses in the area and also larger companies who would be willing to work in a longer term partnership with the school.

Each Employer is thoroughly checked by school before a placement starts and a full Risk Assessment for each individual student is completed by school and the employer.

Students are regularly visited and supported by the school whilst on their work experience and given lifts to and from work if needed with an aim to help them become more independent with this.

Students are expected to attend for at least a few hours each week and then complete a Work Experience Log Book to show their progress over the school year.