Employability & Training


Going straight into a job can be very tempting, as this offers the chance to earn some 'real money'. But what might seem like a good wage now may not be quite as good in a few years' time.

Remember that skills, experience and qualifications are important in this very competitive job market. Job vacancies can be found in newspapers or online.

When you turn 16, you should receive your National Insurance Number. Keep this safe as you will need it when you start a job. If you lose this or for some reason do not receive one, contact your nearest Jobs and Benefits office.


School leaver programmes

Some employers offer school leaver programmes which give you a direct route into the world of work post-18. They are similar to apprenticeships and offer a great combination of work and training and/or study. This does depend on the employer and the type of programme.


College or further training

Education is still free and fully funded until the academic year in which you turn 19 (25 if you have an Education Health Care Plan)

Colleges offer a wide range of courses, including: 

  • Vocational subjects - these are related to a broad subject area such as business, health and social care, etc.
  • Practical vocational courses (often now called technical or professional programmes) that lead to specific jobs such as hairdressing, plumbing, or engineering.
  • Apprenticeships based with a paying employer, where you will be assessed either in the workplace by a visiting assessor, or by attending college for a day or week at a time.
  • Courses that prepare people for Higher Education, such as Access Courses or the Art Foundation course
  • Vocational HE courses, such as Foundation DegreesHigher National Diplomas (HNDs) and Certificates (HNCs)
  • Foundation Courses to develop Maths, English, study skills and employability skills. These courses can give students the chance to try out several different vocational areas.