Careers advice for pupils should start much earlier so that they become aware of the opportunities in the workplace.
So said Scottish minister for Fair Work, Skills and Training Roseanna Cunningham, who is in Shetland this week to launch a Scottish government initiative to bring careers information and advice to S1.
Ms Cunningham made the national announcement at Brae High School this morning, and said the early careers advice would be supported by £1.5million from the Scottish government. Shetland is one of the first areas to benefit from the initiative, which will be rolled out throughout Scotland.
In addition to earlier careers advice, which will involve employing extra careers advisers, older pupils will have one-to-one support when choosing senior phase subjects. This is so that they do not “accidentally close doors” by making inappropriate choices.
Ms Cunningham said: “We are responding to requests from a range of people and organisations for good careers advice to start earlier. There are huge opportunities if you make the right decisions.” Young people should be exposed to opportunities, she said, as they can become aware of careers paths they did not know existed.
Three other schools in Scotland will also be part of the project. Ms Cunningham said: “Lessons learned in Shetland will be taken to other parts of Scotland. Shetland is in the front line.”
She added that this would not be “a short-term project”, and should become “embedded” so that it would not necessarily need more money in future.