FutureReady Careers Conference – The future of North East prosperity lies in high quality careers advice

High quality careers advice and strong character education have to be embedded in every school for the future economic success of the North East, a conference will hear tomorrow.

More than 150 education and business delegates are signed up to attend FutureReady 2016 – the region’s dedicated careers conference which has attracted a stellar line up of national and regional speakers.

Organised by the region’s education network, SCHOOLS NorthEast, in partnership with the National Careers Service, the focus for this year’s conference is on how to embed the best careers guidance and on how to give pupils the skills the need to succeed after they leave school.

The conference – held at the Xcel Centre in Newton Aycliffe on Thursday 4 February – has attracted speakers from the Careers & Enterprise Company, National Careers Week and the National STEM Learning Centre & Network.

Mike Parker, Director of SCHOOLS NorthEast, said: “The North East economy has considerable capacity to grow and is reliant on young people leaving education with a clear vision of the opportunities on offer and with the right character to fully engage in the workplace.

“Being ‘FutureReady’ is more than just being told about career options in Sixth Form. Children who are encouraged to develop the skills and characteristics that will allow them to flourish after leaving school will have brighter and more fulfilling careers. It is important that this happens throughout their education, beginning in primary school and continuing throughout their school years.

“We are delighted that the North East is at the forefront of new developments in careers education. SCHOOLS NorthEast, working in partnership with the North East Local Enterprise Partnership, was instrumental in positioning the region as the ideal location to trial the Career Benchmarks Pilot. This is just one example of the fabulous work that schools in the region are undertaking in this area.

“At SCHOOLS NorthEast, our ambition is for young people in the North East to be the most work-ready students in England. FutureReady will bring together leading educationalists and senior leaders from both primary and secondary schools in order to develop an action plan to support and nurture our young people from cradle to career.”

Delegates will be joined by national experts and local practitioners who will provide detailed advice on how to improve careers education, develop and instil employability skills and forge closer links with employers. Expert speakers include Claudia Harris, CEO of the Careers and Enterprise Company, launched by the Government in 2014 to transform the provision of careers education, along with representatives from National Careers Week, the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues and 21 Trust.

Delegates will discuss the ‘State of the Region’, looking at social and economic trends in the North East and exploring where future jobs will come from. They will hear from local employers and will learn about the key skills young people will need to take advantage of future opportunities.

Delegates will also hear an update on the Career Benchmarks Pilot. Announced at last year’s inaugural FutureReady Conference, the Careers Benchmark Pilot will assess the effectiveness of the Gatsby Foundation eight benchmarks for good career guidance in thirteen schools across the North East.

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