Supporting your child’s career…

In Years 8 and 9, Paignton Academy pupils are required to reduce the number of subjects that they take and select specialisms which they will study alongside compulsory subjects such as English, Maths and Science.  This is an exciting and crucial time for pupils as they can now begin to tailor their education around what they enjoy and/or steer them towards a particular career path.


As a parent or carer, you are in a great position to support your young person through this process and help them look ahead to consider the implications of their choices.  As someone who knows them well, you can discuss their favourite subjects at school and what they might want to do in future.  These conversations can help your child to choose options that reflect their strengths and potentially set them on the path to their chosen career.  When supporting young people to select subject options, it is useful to discuss the following questions with them first:


  • What subjects do you enjoy studying the most and what subjects don’t you enjoy?
  • What subjects do you think you are best at?
  • Are there any that you would like to study further at A Level?
  • Would you like to go to University?
  • What tasks/ skills would you like to do/ develop in a job? What is your dream career?


Key Dates for Year 8 Options
13th March 2018 Options Assembly
14th March 2018 Options Question & Answer event for parents
22rd March 2018 Year 8 Parents evening
23rd March 2018 Online Submission start
29th March  2018 Options Submission deadline


Key Dates for Year 9 Options
18th January 2018 Options Assembly
January /February 2018 Careers Meeting in Ethics Lesson with Careers Advisor
1st February  2018 Options Booklet sent to parents
8th February  2018 Year 9 Parents Evening
1st March 2018 Parents and students attend Options Evening
7th March  2018 Options submission deadline

After Year 11 / GCSEs…

In Year 11 students select fewer subjects and become more focused about their individuality. They investigate the options available to them and begin the application process to one of the following routes:

  • Apprenticeship
  • Traineeship
  • Further education (at a College or 6th Form)
  • Armed Forces


Some university courses and professions may require students to hold a certain grade in a particular subject at GCSE level/ A Level/ Level 3 in order to be considered for entry.  It is useful to check what qualifications and Work Experience your child might need to pursue their career or educational aspirations.  For further help in researching GCSE requirements for a specific career click on the link below:

Careers Research


How does my child apply for a course? 

Your child will be given the time to apply during lunchtimes and break time in the Careers Office or they can do it from the comfort of home if they would prefer –  they will need to go direct to the website of the College, or 6th Form of their choice.


When should my child apply? 

Applications for Year 11 should be made as early as possible most students apply between December and January.


Key dates locally for 2018: 

There are various open evenings that you can attend to help with the decision making process and the dates of these are stated below.  You do not need to book, you can just turn up at the stated times.

South Devon College Open Evenings:

  • Wednesday 21st November 4.00pm – 7.00pm
  • Thursday 24th January 4.00pm – 7.00pm

This year South Devon College staff will be present at the Year 11 Parents’ Evening to be held on Thursday, 29th November.  The staff will be available to support pupils who wish to make an application and will also be offering parents and pupils the opportunity to book a personal tour of the College at a later date.

Exeter College Open Evenings:

  • Wednesday 21st November 5.00pm – 8.00pm
  • Wednesday 16th January 5.00pm – 8.00pm

Churston Grammar School 6th Form Open Evening:

  • Thursday 24th January

St Cuthbert Mayne 6th Form Open Evening:

  • Tuesday 6th November 6.00pm – 8.00pm

Torquay Academy 6th Form Open Evening:

  • Thursday 29th November 6.00pm – 8.00pm

Brixham College 6th Form Open Evening:

  • Thursday 15th November 6.00pm – 8.00pm