Gold careers award joy for school

King Edward VI School assistant headteacher Leanne Johnston is pictured with post-16 mentors Fiona Long and Jessica Mares.  Picture by Jane Coltman
King Edward VI School assistant headteacher Leanne Johnston is pictured with post-16 mentors Fiona Long and Jessica Mares. Picture by Jane Coltman

The efforts of Morpeth’s high school to prepare students for the world of work have been recognised with a prestigious national award.

The Three Rivers Learning Trust recently received the Inspiring IAG Gold Award – a nationally validated careers education, information, advice and guidance quality accolade given to schools that meet the range of criteria focusing on quality, diversity and raising the aspirations of young people.

As well as acknowledging the vision and ethos of the learning trust as a whole, the report specifically highlighted the work that King Edward VI School has carried out over the past three years.

During a full day touring the school, the assessor met students, parents, staff and some of its valued business supporters and volunteers.

The report includes the following: ‘Careers provision at the school is engaging, lively and well co-ordinated.

‘Students are positive about the careers education, information, advice and guidance provision and value the support from careers staff.

‘Engagement with partners, including employers, is strong and there is praise from partners for the organisation and communication’.

KEVI has benefited from participation in the Gatsby Careers Benchmarks National Pilot programme, facilitated by the North East Local Enterprise Partnership.

This has strengthened its professional networks. For example, the school has its own enterprise adviser supported by the Careers and Enterprise Company – a Government-backed organisation.

Paul Carvin, chairman of The Three Rivers Learning Trust, said “The gold status award is wonderful news for King Edward VI School.

“It reflects the huge amount of effort and dedication that the staff at the school have put into ensuring all students get outstanding information, advice and guidance about their future careers.

“The Three Rivers Learning Trust places a very high regard on ensuring that students are really well prepared for life when they leave formal learning and venture into the world of work and it is important that the school works with a range of employers and other partners to give students the best possible support as they move into employment.”

Special mention in the report goes to the information that is provided via the KEVI Careers section of the school’s website –

The report describes the site as ‘comprehensive and accessible to both parents and students’.

Other positives identified include the school supporting National Careers Week and National Apprenticeship Week, its strong and active alumni, a varied post-16 enrichment and guidance programme, work experience opportunities and in Year 10, students complete the Build My Skills programme.

The school’s flagship annual event is King Edward’s Inspires. It gives students and their parents/carers access to representatives of well-known and successful employers, colleges and universities.