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The introduction of the Gatsby benchmarks has provided valuable guidelines to help schools ensure students are fully prepared for the world of work.
School responsibilities extend not only to providing an abundant amount of information about possible career options, but also to enabling young people to develop the skills they need to achieve overall career success.
Teachers are now looking for ways to link the curriculum to careers as outlined in the Gatsby benchmarks.
This is where BASE comes in. BASE is ICAEW’s free national business and accounting competition for 16-17 year olds.
As Sharon Spice, Global Director of Student Recruitment at ICAEW explains, “BASE has been designed specifically to support teachers in linking the learning outcomes of the existing Business Studies, Economics and Maths curriculums and PSHE studies, to careers in business and accountancy.
It provides an environment for students to experience the world of work, without the need to take them out of school.”
She continues: “For more than 10 years, BASE has supported over 22,000 students from a wide variety of subjects and backgrounds to develop a range of business skills to take them forward to the next stage of their career.”
In January, after teachers register their school online, students begin by taking part in an online team game. This game gives students a range of scenarios a chartered accountant may experience during their career. After each section, teams choose how they would likely respond to situations from the options available.
Following this, teams put together a five-minute presentation that is linked to the online game. This presentation is then delivered online as if to a live audience.
These two tasks give students an insight into the world of employment, requiring them to critically analyse businesses in realistic scenarios and provide strategies for improvement.
Alongside this analysis, teams also demonstrate the softer skills required in all careers such as teamwork, communication and curiosity, creating an immersive learning experience for each student.
With the option for it to be run in school time, or as an extracurricular activity, BASE is flexible enough to allow you to manage your standard school schedule, while providing students a taste of a professional environment.
All schools taking part in BASE will receive a detailed pack, including a lesson plan with learning objectives, to help run the competition and advise students.
Pip Langfield, a teacher at Ackworth School confirms: “I think there is a multitude of benefits for kids participating [in BASE]. They have been able to apply all the theories and concepts they’ve learnt in the classroom to a real life case study. The experience has been invaluable to our students, in the development of their employability skills.”
Another of the Gatsby benchmarks highlights the need for students to have multiple opportunities for encounters with employers and employees.
ICAEW recognises this is important and, to support this, all new schools to BASE will have the opportunity to receive mentoring during the competition from a qualified ICAEW Chartered Accountant or ACA student.
Nav Gudra, at the National Audit Office states: “The BASE competition is such a fantastic idea. A really wonderful opportunity for students around the country to take part in such a worthwhile cause. It’s so much more than a competition.
It gives the students a real insight into what it’s actually like working as a chartered accountant, and there is the opportunity to network with employers and find out about the world of accountancy.”
Through BASE, students are learning in one of the most interactive and engaging ways possible while competing with fellow students across the UK.
The top 24 teams who take part in the online round will come together at the National Final in Leeds, where they will compete in one final challenge to determine who will be crowned BASE National Champions.
The winners will walk away with an iPad Air each, and a £4,000 cash prize for their school to spend on resources and enrichment activities.
BASE develops, demonstrates and celebrates the everyday skills demanded of our future professionals. Because of this, prizes are also awarded for a variety of expertise including integrity, critical analysis and commercial awareness.
These prizes are sponsored by employers and consist of work experience, lunch meetings with senior employees and more.
Registrations for BASE 2020 are now open, and teachers can enter as many teams as they like. Register your school today at icaew.com/base to bring your students one step closer to the real world of employment.
For more information contact Lara Soltan on 01908 248 250 or email email@example.com.
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