In the midst of a global pandemic, around 56,000 students across Wales are preparing to collect their GCSE and A-Level results this summer.
With uncertain times ahead, Working Wales is encouraging young people to consider all their options for the future and make an informed choice to start their story.
Data released by Careers Wales in the lead up to results days shows that consistently high numbers of students are opting to continue in full-time education each year with 87.4% of respondents in 2017, 84.8% in 2018 and 86.8% in 2019.
The annual ‘Destinations of School Leavers’ report surveys students in Years 11, 12 and 13 to collect data on their plans for the next year.
Staying in full-time education continues to be the most popular choice for every age group, accounting for 88.2% of Year 11s and 75.6% of Year 13s, followed by entering the labour market through government supported training or work. In 2019, entering work-based learning was most popular amongst Year 13 students at 11.7%, with 8.1% of Year 11s also opting for this route.
The percentages of young people going straight into work stood at 2.5% for Year 11, 2.5% for Year 12 and 9.1% for Year 13. Entering the labour market was a more popular choice with males than females across all three year-groups in 2019.
Working Wales, delivered by Careers Wales, is a free service from the Welsh Government part-funded by the European Social Fund. Working Wales is a one-stop-shop for impartial, expert careers advice which helps people aged 16 and over choose a career that’s right for them and find long-term employment.
Advisers from Working Wales and Careers Wales will be available on both results days to offer help and guidance to young people and their parents or carers receiving their GCSE and A-Level results, whatever their chosen path.
Nikki Lawrence, Careers Wales Chief Executive said: “It’s safe to say that we’ve never had a results day quite like this one. Waiting for exam results can be stressful at the best of times, and we know it’s a particularly challenging time for many this year.
“Many students won’t have had the opportunity to sit their final exams and may understandably feel worried about what that will mean for their results. However you’re feeling about results day this year, the best thing you can do is research all your options so you can make an informed decision.
“We’ll have advisers on hand throughout the results day period to offer support and guidance to help you make the right choice for you.”
Kirsty Williams, Minister for Education, said: “Deciding on the next step in your career can seem like a daunting task. Although we’re living in uncertain times, it’s important to remember that help and advice is available to guide and support you in choosing the career path that’s right for you.
“Whether you’re thinking of continuing in full-time education, undertaking an apprenticeship or going straight into work, Working Wales is there to help you along the way.”
Sample size per survey