The Baker Clause: What Is It and How Can You Meet It?

The Baker Clause: What Is It and How Can You Meet It?

The Baker Clause ensures that students, regardless of background or ability, are given the chance to explore future pathways and prepare for the world of work in order to improve their life opportunities, and contribute to a rewarding and prosperous economy.

But exactly what is it, and how can you ensure you meet it?

What is the Baker Clause?

Introduced in 2018, the provider access legislation (Baker Clause) stipulates that schools must allow colleges and training providers to access every student in years 8-13 to discuss non-academic routes that are available to them.

Updated in January 2023, the government’s Statutory guidance for schools and guidance for further education colleges and sixth form colleges sets out the following, ‘Schools and colleges have a responsibility to set students on the path that will secure the best outcome which will enable them to progress in education and work and give employers the highly skilled people they need.

So, what does this mean in real terms? It means that your school or college must act impartially and not show any bias towards any route, be that academic or technical. Your school or college should promote access to a full range of approved technical education qualifications options.

You might be thinking: ‘how does this relate to the Gatsby Benchmarks?’ Well, by offering a full range of technical options to meet the Baker Clause, you’ll also be meeting those benchmarks which relate to encounters and experiences of future pathways.

Ofsted inspection grades impacted

To further underline the importance of the Baker Clause, a report by the House of Commons Education Committee recommends that Ofsted cut schools off from the top two inspection grades if they fail to comply.

Ofsted has updated its school inspection guidelines to increase the focus on careers guidance, including confirming that inspectors will report if a school falls short of the requirements of the provider access legislation, and how that could impact a school’s inspection grades.

What can you do to meet the Baker Clause?

Making sure you have a broad range of education and training providers involved in your careers programme will be beneficial to your students—and you most likely already do. But here are a few suggestions to help you on your way.

Teacher training and awareness

Ensure ongoing training for teachers and career advisors to effectively implement the Baker Clause. Educators need to be knowledgeable about providing careers advice with all available options and equipped to guide students in exploring these pathways.

Technology integration

Technology can support schools in meeting the Baker Clause requirements. Online platforms, like Xello, are an essential tool for students to explore career options, track experiences, and engage with educators, employers, and parents/guardians in the career planning process.

Start exploration early

It’s never too early for students to start thinking about their futures. Showing students the big picture, starting at year 7, will make career planning feel like a natural part of growth and development.

Xello’s quizzes, assessments, and Portfolios are good tools to help students start their journey. Plus, with Xello’s ready-made, fully integrated lessons, including subjects such as Discover Learning Pathways, Getting Experience, and School Subjects at Work, you’ll easily link content to the Gatsby Benchmarks and PSHE curriculum.

Community engagement

Foster partnerships with local businesses, industries, and community organisations to broaden students’ exposure to vocational opportunities. Highlight the benefits of involving the wider community in career education initiatives and how it can enrich students’ understanding of potential career paths.

Add real-life examples

It’s always good to review your range of education providers and employers, and the information they supply. Look to provide information in different formats as well to include all students, whatever their learning style and abilities. Consider leveraging a careers education program to support you in collating all this information into one accessible place for your students to view and for you to report on. With Xello, you can rely on:

  • A library of immersive career and education profiles:
    Students can explore hundreds of career, college, university, and apprenticeships options. Researched and created by an in-house team of experts, content includes rich photography and real-world interviews to provide an authentic glimpse into their future.
  • In-person interactions:
    Leverage relationships with your education and training providers, as well as employer contacts—invite them to talk in school assemblies, with year groups or at your school or college’s careers fair. Plus, with a good careers education and future-readiness program, like Xello, students can track and record all of these experiences and encounters in their individual career plans.

Collaborate with parents and guardians

We all recognise the importance of students taking ownership of their future plans, but the caring adults in their life play an essential supporting role, as well. Parents offer a valuable way to reinforce the importance of exploring career options, and provide a link to a “workforce” that helps students connect with employment opportunities after school. 

However, ensuring parents are engaged with upcoming student events and opportunities can sometimes be a challenge, with busy schedules and home-life responsibilities. Xello’s Family Portal is a great feature that invites parents and guardians to gain visibility into their child’s future goals and plans; this way they can better support their child’s needs.

Be Flexible and Adaptable

The Baker Clause was created to help educators understand the importance of meeting the needs of individual students. Recognise that career aspirations can vary greatly among students, and that your school or college should offer personalised support to help students explore approved technical education qualifications and apprenticeships.

Using Xello to meet the Baker Clause

The Baker Clause stands as a pivotal framework in ensuring access to diverse career pathways for students across the UK. It aims to broaden students’ horizons and empower them to make informed choices about their future options.

By promoting a range of options and aligning with educational benchmarks, it serves as a cornerstone for guiding students towards fulfilling and successful futures. As schools and colleges navigate the complexities of implementing this crucial legislation, it’s imperative to seek support and resources to ensure effective compliance and meaningful engagement with students. 

Xello was designed for this  

For expert guidance and assistance in navigating the intricacies of the Baker Clause and optimising career education initiatives, reach out to the Xello team.  Book a demo today to find out how Xello can support you in delivering personalised options for your students. Together, we can empower students to explore, discover, and pursue their aspirations with confidence and clarity.