Key Stage 3 – Education for Employability – What it is about

The aim of Education for Employability is to ensure that all young people develop the personal qualities, skills, knowledge, understanding and attitudes which will give them a strong foundation for lifelong learning and work in a rapidly changing economic environment. 

Work patterns and employment trends locally and globally are changing.  A key driver of this change has been the speed of technological development which demands increasing levels of skills and knowledge from employees, and has accelerated the shift from manufacturing industry to services.  The typical worker of the industrial era was required to learn a relatively stable set of skills.  The knowledge-based worker is experiencing a blurring of the boundaries between work and learning. 

Those unable to update their knowledge fast enough both on-the-job and in their own time are increasingly at risk of being marginalised. 

Allied to this is the need to create an entrepreneurial culture in Northern Ireland.  For too many young people their career horizons are narrow.  The idea of self-employment, even in the longer-term, is frequently disregarded as an option.  However, attitudes are now changing and pupils are now more aware of the potential for running an enterprise and are increasingly aware of examples in their locality. 

At a time of changing opportunities it is important that all our young people, from a very early age, have the opportunities to explore the world of work and construct for themselves a path through education, training and employment.  Successful integration with the world of work will ensure greater personal fulfilment.