Empowering Our Youth: career processes, strategies, and practices that enable successful career transitions

August 2023

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In today’s rapidly changing world, the transition from school to further education or entry into the workforce has become increasingly complex and challenging, particularly for students from low socio-economic backgrounds. This is evident in Aotearoa New Zealand for many of our 15–18-year-olds, but especially so for those who are Māori and Pasifika.

It is critical we ensure all our rangatahi have access to viable career opportunities for their, and Aotearoa New Zealand’s, future long-term success. If we are to have an education system fit for purpose for the 21st Century, that delivers equitable outcomes for learners, and where all learners have the opportunity to thrive, then we cannot support the continuation of models in a system that allows students to leave with low or no qualifications or nowhere to go. It is simply not good enough and a sad indictment on our education system.

This report, commissioned by EPIT and funded by the Fletcher Trust and the Joyce Fisher Charitable Trust, investigates approaches being taken in a selection of secondary schools in South Auckland that serve multicultural, and diverse income communities. It offers valuable insights into the strategies employed by careers advisors to empower and equip students with the tools necessary for making informed decisions about their post-school pathways.

It shows that structured, funded and well supported programmes, which deploy career development thinking across the whole school, are clearly having positive impact.

And most importantly, it highlights the crucial role of careers education in our secondary schools, and the need for collaboration between schools, whānau, aiga and families, employers, and community organisations.

Jane Treadwell-Hoye
Executive Director

at Education Partnership and Innovation Trust

Download Report