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Careers guidance and inspiration: statutory guidance and non-statutory departmental advice

The long-awaited 'Careers guidance and inspiration: statutory guidance' and non-statutory departmental advice have finally been published when schools and colleges are closed.

They are available at:


Written Ministerial Statement from the Minister of State for Skills and Enterprise, Matthew Hancock MP:

Statutory guidance on careers guidance and inspiration:

Non-statutory departmental advice on careers guidance and inspiration:

Press notice announcing publication:

In addition, the Department for Education provided this information:

Purpose of the guidance

Schools have a legal duty to ensure that all pupils are provided with independent careers guidance from year 8 to year 13. The statutory guidance outlines why schools (and local authorities that maintain pupil referral units) must secure independent careers guidance for young people, what they must do to comply with their legal responsibilities in this area and the role of the governing body and head teacher in shaping the guidance and support offered by the school.

The non-statutory departmental advice has been published to help recipients understand their obligations and duties in relation to advice and guidance.  It provides suggestions, based on good practice, for ensuring that all pupils have access to high quality advice and guidance.

Why we have published revised guidance

The government commissioned Ofsted to conduct a thematic review to assess progress during the first year of operation of the duty. Ofsted’s report shows that while some schools have responded well to the new duty, the majority of schools need to do more to set high expectations for all pupils and provide high quality advice and guidance that motivates them to succeed.

In response to Ofsted’s report the Minister of State for Skills and Enterprise, Matthew Hancock, published an Inspiration Vision Statement, describing how employers, schools and others will work together to inspire young people about the world of work, opening their eyes to the range of learning and career opportunities open to them. This was accompanied by an action plan setting out a range of measures to support schools to carry out their duty more effectively.  This included publishing revised statutory guidance to ensure that all schools are clear about what is expected of them.

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