100 hours ‘experience of work’ for every child from seven

  • By Jim Ranger

School pupils in London should receive 100 hours experience of the world of work starting from the age of seven, according to London’s business leaders and politicians. 

The recommendation is included in an eighty-page report from the London Enterprise Panel, London Councils and the Mayor of London’s Office. The report will be launched by the Mayor Boris Johnson today (Thursday 25 June) as part of a drive to better prepare school leavers for work. 

London schools and colleges typically achieve better results than elsewhere in England and the capital has brought in several initiatives to raise standards in teaching and academic attainment, but business and political leaders are clear that more must be done to equip young people with the skills to find a job and build a career. 

The report, titled, 'London Ambitions: Shaping a Successful Careers Offer for all Young Londoners', sets out seven recommendations for the London Ambitions career offer to transform the landscape of careers and employment support for young people across the capital, regardless of the particular school or college they attend. 

The Mayor of London and Chairman of the London Enterprise Panel, Boris Johnson, said: “It is absolutely vital that we give young Londoners the right skills to compete in the global marketplace. By providing better careers advice in schools and colleges we will be able to make sure that young people can make the most of their lives and contribute fully to London’s economy and the future of our great city.” 

Commissioned through the London Enterprise Panel (LEP) and London Councils, which represents all 32 boroughs and the City of London, the report’s recommendations include access to personalised careers advice, at least 100 hours’ experience of the world of work by the age of 16 and comprehensive, up-to-date information on the jobs market in the capital. It also recommends a ‘London Ambitions Careers Curriculum’, to help young people think about the learning experiences they have during schooling from a workplace  perspective, and provide a toolkit for schools and colleges. 

Jack Morris OBE, Member of the London Enterprise Panel, said: “The recommendations set out in this report will give our young people the tools they need to set out on their careers with the skills their employer expects. The success of this initiative now relies on the commitment and collaboration of all schools, colleges, employers, local authorities, careers specialists and training providers.”  

Cllr Peter John, London Councils' Executive member for children, skills and employment, said: “In recent years the education system has delivered transformational change in GCSE results, with London outperforming other regions. The challenge now is for everyone with a stake in London’s education system and economy to transform the careers offer.” 

The seven recommendations in the report are:  

  1. Every young Londoner should have completed at least 100 hours experience of the world of work, in some form, by the time they reach the age of 16. Lessons from this and other elements of a young Londoners’ employability journey should be captured in a personalised digital portfolio.
  2. Every young Londoner should have access to impartial, independent and personalised careers education, information, advice and face-to-face guidance in their local community.
  3. Every secondary school and college should have in place an explicit publicised careers policy and careers curriculum on young people’s experiences of the world of work, links with business, careers provision and destination outcomes.
  4. Every good institution will have a governor with oversight for ensuring the organisation supports all students to relate their learning to careers and the world of work from an early age.
  5. Every secondary school and college should have up-to-date, user-friendly labour market intelligence/information (LMI) readily accessible.
  6. The quality of careers provision should be strengthened by developing ‘careers clusters’ to share resources in improving awareness of London’s labour market.
  7. The London Ambitions Portal will be designed to enable more schools and colleges to easily find high-quality careers provision designed to support the career development of all young Londoners.


Notes to Editor

The initiative is being backed by a multi-million investment to improve careers services for all young Londoners. £380 million (€545 million) is currently being invested in London through the European Social Fund, with dedicated funding to support careers, enterprise and employability provision. It includes £14 million focused on developing high quality careers and jobs market advice across the capital, £13 million to develop youth talent and more than £45 million targeting those not in education, employment or training.

The London Enterprise Panel is the local enterprise partnership for London. Chaired by Mayor of London Boris Johnson, the LEP is the body through which the Mayoralty works with London’s boroughs, business and Transport for London to take a strategic view of the regeneration, employment and skills agenda for London.

London Councils represents all 32 London boroughs and the City of London. It makes the case to get the best deal for Londoners and to ensure that its member authorities have the resources, freedoms and powers to do the best possible job for their residents and local businesses. For more information on London Councils Young people Education and Skills team visit http://www.londoncouncils.gov.uk/our-key-themes/children-and-young-people/14-19-young-peoples-education-and-skills.

The Mayor of London has introduced a number of initiatives to boost attainment and raise standards in teaching in the capital's schools. This includes investing in the £24 million London Schools Excellence Fund and introducing the Gold Club, which both aim to raise standards in teaching and subject knowledge. The London Curriculum, designed to complement the national curriculum, supports teachers to maximise the potential of the capital's cultural institutions, heritage sites and other assets to help bring to life academic learning for pupils key stage 3. The first resources to be published focused on English, history, music, arts and geography and are set to be followed by resources focusing on science and dance this summer. For more information go to www.london.gov.uk/priorities/schools-and-education.