Careers guidance and support is an essential part of life at Leigh Academy Tonbridge. We encourage students to consider future pathways as soon as they start with us in Year 7. Throughout Years 8-13 we are committed to providing opportunities that link to the 8 Gatsby Benchmarks and help guide students to the University future or career of their choice.

Our careers provision is always under evaluation to ensure it remains highly effective for our students, with formal reviews carried out annually.

An overriding commitment to careers provision

We are committed to providing an annual careers fair, provide visits to universities, apprenticeship information, UCAS information events, opportunities to meet with employers regularly and we promote work related learning in all Key Stages.

The Sixth Form also benefits from a partnership with Pathway CTM and other local careers advice agencies to ensure that our students have the most up-to-date knowledge and information to have the currency to be able to confidently identify future pathways for themselves. For vocational pathways and in particular sport, we provide opportunities to gain work placements, often in local primary schools alongside our schools sports partnership responsibility. All students have access to current labour market information in Tonbridge and Malling as well as the surrounding region.

The Gatsby Benchmarks

There are eight recognised Gatsby benchmarks that our careers provision aims to meet. Please read our statement on provider access to learn more about how we meet these benchmarks.

Every school and college should have an embedded programme of career education and guidance that is known and understood by pupils, parents, teachers and employers.

Every pupil, and their parents, should have access to good-quality information about future study options and labour market opportunities. They will need the support of an informed adviser to make the best use of available information.

Pupils have different career guidance needs at different stages. Opportunities for advice and support need to be tailored to the needs of each pupil. A school’s careers programme should embed equality and diversity considerations throughout.

All teachers should link curriculum learning with careers. For example, STEM subject teachers should highlight the relevance of STEM subjects for a wide range of future career paths.

Every pupil should have multiple opportunities to learn from employers about work, employment and the skills that are valued in the workplace. This can be through a range of enrichment activities including visiting speakers, mentoring and enterprise schemes.

Every pupil should have first-hand experiences of the workplace through work visits, work shadowing and/or work experience to help their exploration of career opportunities and expand their networks.

All pupils should understand the full range of learning opportunities that are available to them. This includes both academic and vocational routes and learning in schools, colleges, universities and in the workplace.

Every pupil should have opportunities for guidance interviews with a career’s adviser, who could be internal (a member of academy staff) or external, provided they are trained to an appropriate level. These should be available whenever significant study or career choices are being made. They should be expected for all pupils but should be timed to meet their individual needs.

Highlights of our events

Careers Day 2022 at Hayesbrook Academy.
Three male students are pictured holding prizes they have won on Careers Day 2022.

A highly impactful careers fair

Each year we hold a careers fair for our students as a prelude to ‘National Apprenticeship Week’ in the spring. In the past we have invited many exhibitors including Canterbury Christ Church University, The University of Sussex, Pearson College, Amazon, Barrington James, The Bank of England, Runway Training, Hadlow College, West Kent College, The Royal Engineers, RAF, Tonbridge Lions, Savills, Wells Fargo, AXA PPP, NHS, United Living, JD Wetherspoons, Kent Training and Apprenticeships, Medway School of Pharmacy, A1 Driving School, Go Coach, Caffyns and many more local and regional employers.

Experiences of Local Businesses

We regularly welcome a diverse range of different businesses or local providers to the Academy to meet our students. If you are interested in working with us to inspire the next generation then please read our provider access policy.

Work shadowing and work experience

At Leigh Academy Tonbridge we recognise the benefit to personal development that experience of work provides. As part of our careers and employment commitment to the students we offer a full work experience programme which includes work shadowing for students in Year 9 and work experience for students in Year 12.

Students are seen interacting with representatives from different companies during a Careers Event at Hayesbrook Academy.

Careers Cultural Capital

Students at Leigh Academy Tonbridge have experienced fantastic opportunities. Including speakers, guests, visits and activities from:

Key Stage 3

Canterbury Christchurch University visit
London Velodrome
London Lions
Combined Cadet Force
Duke of Edinburgh
Speakers for Schools Programme

Key Stage 4

Stay The Course
National apprenticeship show
Emirates University fair
Science enterprise workshop
National Theatre
Duke of Edinburgh
Speakers for Schools Programme

Key Stage 5

Farnborough air show
National apprenticeship show
Emirates University fair
Speakers for Schools Programme
Canterbury Christ Church University visit
Visit to Greenwich University
UCAS evening
UCAS finance evening
Brighton University visit

Please contact our Careers Leader Steven Reader, on if you are a provider interested in promoting careers at Leigh Academy Tonbridge.  To view our CEIAG Policy and our Provider Access Statement, please view our policies below.

Provider Access Policy All Leigh Academy Tonbridge Policies