In February 2017 our DYW Employer Partnership Dinner successfully led to Principal Teachers of curricular areas forming links with employers related to their subject specialism. Following on from this, a successful partnership was formed between the Design and Technology Department and the University of Glasgow’s Engineering Department.
A two day event involving all S2 pupils was held in September 2017 highlighting to pupils the skills and knowledge required in STEM related careers. Pupils were given the opportunity to develop their Skills4Learning, Life and Work as they demonstrated their team working, problem solving, numeracy and communication skills throughout the day.
The design brief given to pupils was a simplified version of the work carried out by University students. Pupils were set the challenge to design a water park encouraging all the family to have fun and be active as well as problem solve as to how the park would function, taking in to consideration principles of physics. This was also an opportunity for pupils to increase their awareness of factors that designers would have to juggle and balance in order to successfully complete a design project similarly to the world of work.
Pupils were challenged throughout the day to work through the design process as part of whole teams and sub teams taking on board constructive criticism in order to fully develop their concepts. All of this was supported by two university lecturers, Design and Technology staff, our DYW Principal Teacher as well as S6 volunteers with a keen interest in design and engineering.
A number of our S6 pupils were accepted onto the Orbit Incubator Programme this year. Pupils worked with a dedicated business mentor in setting up their own business, and have developed many skills for life and work along the way.
During the weekly mentoring sessions, pupils heard from leading people from industry including one of Scotland's most influential business leaders, Jim McColl. Throughout the programme pupils involved had the opportunity to develop their own public speaking skills by pitching their own business plans as well as their business acumen.
This event exposes our S2 pupils to the world of work through meeting with and talking to invited guests from industry, giving pupils an insight in to a typical day for them and what their job involves.
The conference began with presentations on the options process, highlighting how important it is for young learners to focus on specific subjects that are essential for their career planning. Secondly, our learners were made aware of the different progression routes including Further and Higher education, and directly in to the world of work.
A young entrepreneur and former pupil, Emma Toner, who now owns a Deli and Donuts franchise was invited as a key speaker to inspire pupils and highlight the benefits of starting up a business. She reminded pupils that there are many career pathways available to them and that seizing every opportunity will help them to make the right choice and pursue a career that they enjoy.
The main activity in the event involved pupils meeting our invited guests from the world of work. We asked approximately twenty guests to speak across various industries. Amongst them were a number of former pupils who shared their educational and employment experiences during group discussions. Over a 90 minute period the pupils involved met all the guests where they were also given the opportunity to ask questions.
This event is very important in setting our S2 pupils on the right path to choosing their subjects and career planning. Thank you to all our community partners that attended and made this event possible.
MyWorldofWork (MWOW) is an online careers education website. It is an all age service, designed to help build pupils’ career management skills and discover what careers match their skills, interests, education and experience.
Douglas Academy has 17 My World of Work Ambassadors who act as champions for this service, promoting the support it offers to their fellow pupils, teachers, parents and carers. The ambassador training gave the pupils leadership opportunities as well as opportunities to develop essential employability skills. They also have the pens, badges and T-shirts to prove it!
Pupils delivered a series of PSE lessons, using the website, as part of the Careers Education unit for all S2 pupils. They supported S2 pupils in class, demonstrating to them how to register and navigate through the MWOW tools - allowing pupils to find out about several career options based on their skills, interests and ambitions.
Our ambassadors were also showcasing their skills at the S2 Subject Options meeting. They delivered a presentation demonstrating to parents how they could further support their child when making subject choices via the Parent Section of the MWOW website.
Our ambassadors have also supported our cluster primaries through delivering career education workshops, using the MWOW website, as well as helping to organisea careers fair, where primary 7 pupils were given the opportunity to find out about different careers and learner pathways.
We are working in partnership with Cycling Scotland to provide pupils in S5/6 with the opportunity to gain a wider achievement qualification – SCQF accredited Level 5 Junior Cycling Award. A number of our senior pupils completed the two day course in November 2017.
Pupils received mentoring over the two days for the practical training as well as sitting a Health and Safety assessment. All pupils involved successfully passed the course. As newly qualified Cycle Training Assistants, in the New Year, pupils will plan and deliver cycle training sessions to our cluster primaries. This was an opportunity for pupils involved to not only develop their Skills for Learning, Life and Work but also to achieve an additional qualification during their Senior Phase at Douglas Academy.
A group of S4 pupils were given the chance to participate in a week long training placement provided by Strathclyde Fire and Rescue Service. The purpose of the Fire Reach programme is to provide training and development opportunities for young people, through Fire Service related activities. The scheme helps raise pupils’ awareness of the role of the Fire Service and other linked agencies within their community. With displayed commitment, regular attendance and the completion of the many aspects of the programme, the young people will enhance their employment prospects.
The aims of the Fire Reach Programme link well to the four capacities of Curriculum for Excellence,by providing a programme which includes the essential elements of First Aid and the use of operational fire equipment such as hose and ladders; all within a disciplined environment. Other essential elements of the course are punctuality, good attendance, general appearance and demeanour.
After their participation,pupils involved were provided with a portfolio giving details of the course and feedback on their participation, along with photographic evidence of their experience.