Helpful Hints & Tips to support Transition

Below you’ll find information to support school providing Careers Advice/Guidance, Transition from Secondary school to College and useful toolkits


What does this mean?
Useful Guidance and Tools
Developing independent skills at a younger age

In September 2013 the statutory duty to secure access to independent careers guidance was extended from Years 9-11 to include Years 8-13. However, Ofsted has highlighted that outstanding schools will also include Year 7 in their Careers EIAG plan.

Similarly, although there is no statutory duty on primary schools to secure careers advice and guidance for their pupils, primary schools must prepare their pupils for transitions. Part of this may involve developing independent skills both through standalone activities and in every-day learning.

The upcoming Careers Strategy for England is expected to extend these duties further.

‘20 questions’ apps where young people can ask questions with yes/no answers to navigate pathways

There are several ways schools can use technology to help students explore their post-16 options. One of the most popular is Plotr where students work through a series of questions to explore their personality, interests and needs in life and helps identify potential careers and how to pursue them. This psychometric test is modelled as a game.  Students can create an account for free and complete it either in school or at their leisure.

Schools can also encourage students to use This website has been developed by local authorities in the Liverpool City Region to bring together all different careers resources into one place.

Visiting the new school or setting before moving

Opportunities to visit school/setting on several occasions before moving in order to get used to the building/people there e.g. half a term of activities linking primary to secondary, meeting important people like Head of Year

Many secondary schools already have excellent relations with their feeder primary schools and hold open days for students to look around and get a feel for their new school. It is also good practice to have Year 7 students start several days earlier than other year groups in order to settle in to their new environment.

The former Department for Children, Schools and Families published a study in 2008 entitled, ‘What Makes a Successful Transition from Primary to Secondary School?’ which remains a useful guide today.

Secondary schools may also wish to incorporate visits to local colleges and businesses. In addition to regular open days, Riverside and Cronton Colleges can arrange ‘taster days’ for your students to experience life in college before they decide.  You may also contact other local colleges and school sixth forms so that students are exposed to and can experience a variety of settings.

The Department for Education’s March 2015 statutory guidance on Careers Guidance and Inspiration in Schools suggests work experience and workplace visits as a means of allowing students to experience life in different industries. Work experience in particular helps students make an easier transition into apprenticeships and make better informed decisions about whether further education or an apprenticeship is right for them.

How a 'Buddy' could help?

Year above ‘buddy’ for year below, transferable for any service e.g. young person moving to Adult health services

Introducing a buddy system into your school can bring several benefits:

  • Older students develop empathy, confidence and a greater sense of responsibility
  • Parents are reassured
  • Bullying may fall
  • Extra support system for school staff

Buddy systems are particularly useful when students are transitioning from Year 6 to Year 7 or when students join the school part way through the year. Students settle in faster and both new students and parents to the school feel welcomed.

You can find some useful templates to help implement a buddy system in your school here.

School’s Careers Education, Information, Advice and Guidance – Contact Details

If you require further support to develop your provision contact:

Graeme Peace – Halton Borough Council’s Careers Education Service [email protected]

Telephone – 0151 511 7300