There's something for everyone after GCSEs and you don't have to follow one path.

Katie decided that A levels weren't for her...

When I was approaching year 11 and thinking of what to do next, I knew that I didn't want to stay at school for A levels; I wanted a different option where I could work and carry on learning. In years 10 and 11 at Queen Elizabeth School I went to information sessions about apprenticeships and went to career fairs where employers shared information on the apprenticeships they were offering.

Katie's career journey

  • Queen Elizabeth's School Wimborne
  • Children and Young People's Workforce (Intermediate) through Apprenticeship with Wessex Training and Assessment Ltd
  • Qualified Children and Young People's Workforce worker, Early Years Teacher

What was your learning journey?

I knew I wanted to work with children so at one of the careers evenings I spoke to someone from Orchard Day Nurseries about apprenticeships. I did my work shadowing placement at the nursery as part of my work experience programme at school and really enjoyed it.

I emailed Orchard Day Nurseries and asked about apprenticeship opportunities; I had an interview and was offered a Children and Young People's Workforce Apprenticeship.

An apprenticeship is a job where you learn the skills, knowledge and behaviours while you are working and being paid. I learn best by doing and that's why the apprenticeship approach to learning suits me. I had theory work to do alongside my work and this was completed in working hours with the support of:

  • my tutor
  • the assessor from the provider supporting the apprenticeship
  • my employer
As written work is not my strong point, I found it easier with the support of my tutor, Kelly. I also completed my English and ICT Functional Skills as it was a requirement of my theory work.

What are you doing now?

I completed the apprenticeship earlier this year and continue to work at Orchard Day Nurseries as a Children and Young People's Workforce worker.

I am looking forward to my next career step now that the apprenticeship has started my career and given me more confidence.

Find your education options

There are different ways to find out what your education options are: