Careers Advice & Support

At Thomas Bennett we strongly believe that every young person has the right to information that will keep them healthy and safe. PSHE is an important and necessary part of the sixth form curriculum and provides the opportunity for students to reflect on the world they are living in, equipping them with essential life skills. The aim of the programme at TBCC is to provide a broad curriculum that covers issues that are relevant to students and will have impact on them as they grow and change as individuals. Sixth form students are at a point in their lives when they are faced with the prospect of taking on more responsibility and making some big decisions, the aim is to support them with this. The programme is designed to guide students through the process of settling in to sixth form life and, later on, applying to university, preparing themselves to enter the world of work or take on an apprenticeship.

Every student in the sixth form at TBCC will study PSHE. All students will attend a 20 mins session scheduled once per week during tutor time, led by Academic Supervisors. In addition to this sixth form students will also be participating in 5 whole school de-timetabled days scheduled across the school year which will further deepen their knowledge and understanding of the our 3 central themes. Sessions will be delivered using a range of teaching strategies and relevant resources.


Healthy Body & Mind

Healthy Body & Mind

These sessions will cover a variety of topics designed to safeguard our students including what is meant by a healthy lifestyle, how to maintain physical, mental and emotional health and wellbeing and manage risks to these, the impact of lifestyle choices on the human body, including information on drugs and alcohol, sex and relationships education, and how to respond in an emergency. As part of these sessions students will be provided with a wealth of information and resources on professional bodies that can be approached for help and support in all areas of maintaining a healthy body and mind.

Economic Well Being and Planning For The Future (IAG)

This unit will run throughout the year and will help students to develop their understanding of the world of work and the career choices that are available to them. Part of this programme will involve exploring options for further education, training (apprenticeships) and employment and students will plan and prepare for their next steps after TBCC. There will be support and assistance for all students to apply to the UCAS programme and regular information and opportunities for students who are planning to start an apprenticeship or move into the world of work. There will also be sessions on managing money and the importance of keeping it safe as well as student finance for those students moving on to higher education.

British Values and Religious Views

Through these sessions students will develop their understanding of British values and their wider community including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect for and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs. Students will learn about and understand a range of religions and world views and then move on to express ideas and insights about the nature, significance and impact of these religions and world views

Safeguarding young people from Radicalisation & Extremism is no different from safeguarding them from other forms of harm.

Please view the Preventing Radicalisation and Extremism presentation below.



Year 12 Students attend Safe Drive Stay Alive day course in November.Safe Drive Stay Alive


Explore your Options

It can be hard to figure out where to start when thinking about the future.  Click on the icon below to open up a decision tree.  The decision tree will help to give you an idea of what steps you could take.  We always recommend exploring all your options before making a final decision, so approach this with an open mind.

Decision Tree





Gap Year


Qualifications are recognised across the world and work experience will open many doors as you will have gained the specific skills and qualifications needed.

University qualifications are recognised across the world.  For some careers a degree is the only route.  Some employers will specify that you must have a degree or training to do certain rules.

Work experience counts for a lot when moving on through your career, but some jobs will require you to have a higher education qualification or job specific training.

Life skills and work experience will stand you in good stead to start a successful career but some jobs will require you to have higher education qualification or job specific training.


You will gain an internationally recognised qualification at level 2-7.  Training will take place on the job with formal training in college or a training centre, online or in your place of work.

You will gain a degree qualification.  Training will take place in university, usually full time.

You may be offered training by an employer to further your skills but this is not guaranteed.

Although there won’t be any formal training, you will be developing your life skills.

Work Experience

From the beginning of your training you will be working full time in your chosen role, learning on the job from your colleagues.

Some courses may include a period of work experience or a longer term work placement, but generally you will be learning in a class room environment.

You will gain work experience from the minute you start building up your skills and increasing your knowledge.

If you choose to work during your gap year you will gain useful work experience and demonstrate to future employers that you have the life skills and experience needed to progress in the work place.


There are no costs to you, all of your training is paid for, so no student leans to worry about one you complete your qualification.  You may have some travel expenses, which you will need to account for in your budget.

University currently costs up to £9k per year, which you will need to fund yourself or you can apply for student loan.  You may begin paying our loan back one you are in full time employment and earning over £21k. If you are moving away from home you will also need to consider accommodation and living costs.

You will need to consider commuting costs to and from your work place.

Travelling can be expensive so you may want to look into your rights to work in the countries that you visit to help fund your adventure.


As an apprentice you will be paid a wage as you work and learn, starting from £132 per week, up to £400 per week for 40 hours, depending on the role and qualification level.  Qualified apprentices will more than likely be paid a higher wage than someone without any higher education qualification, most netting a wage equal or even higher than their graduate colleagues.

You won’t be paid a wage, so you may need to consider part time job to help with living costs.  Once leaving university you will most likely be paid a higher wage than someone who hasn’t completed any further education qualifications.

The minimum wage for under 18’s is currently £3.87 rising as you get older to reach £7.20 for over 25s.  However, depending on your experience and roles that you are applying for your wage could far exceed this.

If you are going to work and travel, the wage will vary greatly, each country has their own working and wage rules, so be sure to check that out.

Time Frame

1-2 years is the average, some of the higher qualifications may take up to 7 years to complete.

A degree usually takes 3 years, but if your course includes a year’s work placement it will more than likely be a 4 year course.  For more specialist training such as medical training it could take up to 10 years including vocational training on the a work placement.

As long as you’re enjoying the job.  The longer you stay in a job the better it will look on your CV, especially if you are able to progress through the ranks. This shows commitment and your drive to succeed.

As long as you like, however staying out of full time employment for longer than a year or 2 could have a detrimental effect on your CV.  Employers may see a long stint of traveling as a warning sign that you may not be able to commit to a long term role.

Career Prospects

Apprenticeships are recognised around the world and can open many doors. The fact that you have learnt on the job and therefore gained the exact skills needed for the role will mean that you’re a highly skilled worker.  Many apprentices move through the ranks of the business that they trained in and some move on to even bigger things.

University degrees are recognised the world over and will help you gain employment in more specialist and higher level roles within a business.  For some specialist careers a degree is essential to gain employment in the sector.

Getting straight into work from the word go will really show your commitment and drive to succeed.  If you work hard, show you’re willing to learn and develop your skills you will open doors to new challenges or potential promotion.

Getting strong life skills and potentially some work experience under your belt, while seeing the world, can definitely set you on the right course to get stuck into a fulfilling career.  Your experiences will be completely individual and will more than likely give a different perspective on life and work, which many innovative employers will love.

Social Life

As an apprentice you will be moving straight into a professional environment, but that doesn’t mean it will be all work and no play.  You will make new friends in your new job, plus earning a wage will give you more freedom to pursue your hobbies and doing things that you love.

University offers a varied social life.  It’s a great opportunity to meet new people and you will more than likely go on a night out or two!  However, if you don’t work whilst training you may find it hard to find the cash to go out with your new friends.

You will be moving straight into a professional environment, but that doesn’t mean it will be all work and no play.  You will most likely make new friends in your new job, plus earning a wage will give you more freedom to pursue your hobbies and do things that you love.

Traveling tends to be one big social gathering.  You will meet loads of new friends along the way, but unless you have a large savings pot you will need to work in order to fund sight-seeing and evenings out.

Unifrog Unifrog is a great platform for students to use, providing details of higher education, training and other opportunities available.  A selection of Universities both in UK and abroad and apprenticeship positions. For more information please take a look at the Unifrog guide.  UNIFROG-GUIDE.pdf


Useful Careers Website:


Studying abroad


Gap Year