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To think DD aged 16 isn't going to have any income when she leaves school because she doesn't fit neatly into one of the boxes?

(97 Posts)
MarthaEntwhistle Wed 09-Jan-13 00:13:29

DD will leave school in the summer. She doesn't want to do 6th form/college. She's clever but not academic. Instead she wants to work in an outdoor adventure centre - she sees this as a future career, not just a bit of fun -and has some voluntary work lined up at a local centre, but it seems they can't offer her a job until she's 18 as she'll be supervising chilldren so needs to be 18 for that. They don't do appenticeships.

So it looks like DD will be doing outdoorsy voluntary work until she's 18. There's no colleges near us that do any outdoor adventure BTECs or anything else remotely interesting to her.

A friend told me that my DD won't be allowed to "just do voluntary" as she has to be in some sort of education. Not sure how she'll be found out, perhaps the undercover zipwire police will spot her

I am concerned about her having no income as she's not conforming by staying on in education and I'm finding it hard to get any information about what entitlements she'll have, to benefits, if any. Bit of a worry really and school/careers haven't been that helpful - just wanting to pigeon hole her into 6th form or college which she has no interest in.

AIBU to hope there's someone around who knows about this stuff?

sashh Wed 09-Jan-13 07:20:05


Another course she might look at is BTEC Level 3 'unifrmed public services' - it's designed as prep for the army or police, fire service etc, but there are units on expeditions, both on land and water, health and safety and quite a few other units that link to her chosen career.

It's run at most colleges.

teacherandguideleader Wed 09-Jan-13 07:23:17

I would say doing some kind of level 3 qualification would be really beneficial - what about something like BTEC sport? Also, she should try to get some qualifications such as kayaking.

Does she do Duke of Edinburgh? This may be good for her - it will also show future employers she is serious about outdoors stuff. She could then go on to do a BEL qualification allowing her to take kids on expeditions - she would then be able to work with local authorities /schools who run D of E.

EvenIfYouSeeAPoppy Wed 09-Jan-13 07:30:56

People have given some good suggestions re qualifications.

Tbh, I think the issue here is not so much fitting into boxes or not - she would be seriously unwise to leave school at 16 without continuing into education or training of some kind.

Is she disenchanted with the school setting and fears further education will just be more of the same? Perhaps some visits to some colleges which offer the kinds of qualifications others have suggested might be in order.

I think if you let her go down the no-education route you will both be kicking yourselves in 5 years' time at the latest. It's admirable that you respect and support her choices, but you need to issue some strong guidance at this stage, I think.

Good luck.

poocatcherchampion Wed 09-Jan-13 07:33:08

In terms of being found out the school should identify who is going where, and the colleges and apprenticeship providers will have lists of who arrived where. The lea will investigate the gap in the middle. It used to be done by connexions as part of their tracking for career guidance and to support , but that role has passed back to the local authority. She might slip through the net but that's not exactly a good thing although it might seem it.

ConfusedPixie Wed 09-Jan-13 07:34:13

There are loads of live in college courses for outdoor education, they atte expensive, but if it's what she wants to do it's worth it! Also, some centres may take unger 18 apprentices, most don't though. She is much better getting a few a levels or an nvq and trying to get at least one qualification before she's 18 to show that she is serious our the serious holiday companies won't take her seriously! And getting a job in a serious company after pgl or jca is very difficult! I got interviewed by six or seven companies who told me that is I was serious about it I'd go for an apprenticeship with a company big on training which is a good two or thee year commitment and I stupidly gave up that opportunity and still regret it! Pgl and jca aren't great for training mainly bevause they won't train you to the extent the serious companies will (you may get one actual qualification a season with them whereas the serious companies you qualify you in whatever they can!)
Paddlesports qualifications are usually good (she's need to find a club that canoed and kayaked though), archery is good too and climbing/walking qualifications are great! Sailing will get her into foreign centres more easily later on but she can learn that later for a hell of a lot cheaper.

Snog Wed 09-Jan-13 07:35:28

If an employer has 20 plus applications for each job they will probably interview around 6 people based on whose application form is best. Ask your dd why she would be chosen for interview based on what she can put on her application form.

This should help her to start thinking along the right lines. Also ask her what she wants to be doing age 25 and age 55, and if she should become physically unable to work at an outdoor centre.

ErikNorseman Wed 09-Jan-13 07:37:02

I have heard from someone who should know that there will be no enforcement of the new school leaving age, so in effect it will still only be compulsory until 16. No reason really why she shouldn't do unpaid work for a while if it will lead to a career, but IMO she should do this alongside a basic college course. She will be more employable with at least a level 2 as well as work experience.
If she really won't do college then she'll have to get a part time job to fund herself.

ConfusedPixie Wed 09-Jan-13 07:39:55

And mountain bike qualies, in fact that combined with summer mountain leader is an epic combo.

landofsoapandglory Wed 09-Jan-13 07:42:00

She has to stay in education or training until she is 17 so can't claim benefits, or go to work full time. I am surprises you didn't know this, tbh. I would look at the ideas that the other posters have given you.

FiveGoMadInDorset Wed 09-Jan-13 07:42:58

There are courses out there for her to do, our county agricultural college Kingston Maurward does them here and I am sure they can't be the only ones.

bruffin Wed 09-Jan-13 07:55:37

She can qualify as a lifeguard at 16.The NPLQ is a week long course and costs about £200.
Our local leisure centre takes on about 6_8 casual staff every autumn term when the older ones go off to uni.

cory Wed 09-Jan-13 07:57:16

Snog Wed 09-Jan-13 07:35:28
"If an employer has 20 plus applications for each job they will probably interview around 6 people based on whose application form is best. Ask your dd why she would be chosen for interview based on what she can put on her application form."


Remind her that the fact that a centre tell her that they can't offer her a job until she's 18 is absolutely no guarantee that they will offer her a job when she's 18. She won't be the only 18yo around wanting that job, and the others may well have qualifications she doesn't.

ILoveTIFFANY Wed 09-Jan-13 08:00:08

She sounds the same as my dd!! Bear grylls has nothing on her!!

She went off the rails in final school year, left home refused her exams etc.

Luckily college accepted her on their sports course ( 1 year) and she loves it!

After this she plans public services course. She also did army cadets.

bruffin Wed 09-Jan-13 08:01:51

She has to stay in education or training until she is 17 so can't claim benefits, or go to work full time

This is incorrect you can work full time

AmberLeaf Wed 09-Jan-13 08:04:37

Is she in year 11 now?

Im pretty sure that current year 11s will not be affected by the changes in leaving age.

Under the present law, the school leaving age is 16. After 2013 the education leaving age will rise to 17

My son is in year 11 now and that is what we have been led to believe.

Fleurdebleurgh Wed 09-Jan-13 08:05:46

Find your local Scout Activity Centre and see if they have any paid jobs available. They usually do over the summer. They also take 16 yr olds. I did this for 3 years after i left school.

You can live onsite and gain qualifications in all sorts from Kayaking to Abseiling.

The pay is crap, but most vocational jobs are!

whois Wed 09-Jan-13 08:11:17

If she's clever enough to take A levels, and she doesn't have a decent alternative plan lined up, she'd be a fool not to take them. You can't say at 16 exectly where she will end up, but having three decent A levels will never hold her back where as NOT having A levels will be a barrier to many jobs/ courses.

landofsoapandglory Wed 09-Jan-13 08:16:48

But Bruffin she still has to do part time education with full time work.

landofsoapandglory Wed 09-Jan-13 08:20:41

Amberleaf DS2 is in year 11. He is affected by the changes. We were made aware that he was going to be when we went for his options meeting in year 9. We have a meeting next week to makesure they choose the right path for them. He is doing A levels, which he would have done any way.

spg1983 Wed 09-Jan-13 08:21:05

I think that the 'part-time education' with full-time work can also refer to on-the-job training; the only thing that the Government want to put a stop to with regard to full-time jobs is pupils getting a very menial job at 16 which has no training and no chance of progression. I'm not 100% but I'm pretty sure that a full time job which has an element of ongoing training counts as fulfilling the part-time education stipulation.

AmberLeaf Wed 09-Jan-13 08:23:14


Bruffins link explains it better.

Those in year 10 now will be the first to be affected.

landofsoapandglory Wed 09-Jan-13 08:24:53

here Amber.

landofsoapandglory Wed 09-Jan-13 08:26:40

No Amber, those in Year 10 have to sty till their 18th birthday!

JenaiMorris Wed 09-Jan-13 08:29:32

Are there any evening courses in something like yachting that she might be interested in? Got to be worth a look imo.

Naming's suggestion is pretty extreme but it's an idea - I always wish I'd considered the armed forces but it didn't even occur to me when I was young.

redexpat Wed 09-Jan-13 08:35:05

I was looking at outdoor education as an option when I finished univeristy. I was told by a careers advisor that UCLan university of central lancashire had some courses for postgrads. Might be worth a look to see what ele there is available.

I think the army might be a good way in. You get trained and paid, and they have colleges for 16-18 year olds dont they?

Frankly I think she needs to research this a lot more than she has done.

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