HL Deb 26 March 1998 vol 587 cc252-3WA
Lord Marlesford

asked Her Majesty's Government:

For what periods of time and at what ages they believe children should undertake work experience and whether, in the interest of children receiving the best school education, they believe that the time for work experience should be taken from the school term or from the holidays. [HL1124]

The Minister of State, Department for Education and Employment (Baroness Blackstone)

Pupils can undertake work experience at any time in their last year of compulsory schooling (after the Easter term in Year 10) and beyond. The Government recognise the value of good quality work experience in helping to prepare young people for the world of work and for its contribution to enriching the curriculum. It is important that placements occur in term time to ensure adequate supervision and monitoring by schools and to maximise the learning outcomes and curriculum benefits. Work experience usually takes place in the summer term of Year 10—in most cases after GCSEs have finished.

The Government are also taking steps to open up opportunities for the wider use of work related learning throughout Key Stage 4, especially where it will help keep disaffected young people in the education system. Work experience is therefore likely to feature in supporting out of school learning programmes tailored to meet the individual needs of these students.