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Career information, advice and guidance services in North Ayrshire received a positive report from the education body’s review team.

Skills Development Scotland’s (SDS) careers service scored top marks in a report from Education Scotland, receiving two grades of ‘very good’, two ‘goods’ and one ‘satisfactory’. An area of excellent practice was also identified.

The review, published on Friday 12 June, cited an area of excellent practice from SDS staff in the area, praising the annual Creating Connections event for young people with additional support needs and their parents / carers.

SDS provides free, impartial career information, advice and guidance for people of all ages across North Ayrshire, with professionally qualified carers advisers normally working in the community hub in Irvine, the employability hub in Ardrossan, and across the area’s nine secondary schools.

SDS services remain available throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, however the nature of delivery has moved to telephony and online support in response to public health advice.

"This Education Scotland review demonstrates the commitment and hard work that goes into delivering our career information, advice and guidance services across North Ayrshire. “I am extremely proud of the team and was particularly pleased to see that the team’s professional and reflective practice was recognised. This has played a significant role in our ongoing development and continuous improvement. Many congratulations to everyone involved.”

Hazel Mathieson, SDS Head of Operations South West

“It’s great to see the North Ayrshire team’s hard work and commitment being recognised in such a positive review. It’s very well deserved. We work very hard to develop strong relationships with partners and I’m particularly pleased that this has been noted. I am extremely grateful to all our partners for the support they give us and in helping us achieve such a positive report. “Creating Connections is a highlight in our annual calendar and I’ve seen first-hand the amount of effort and coordination that goes into making this event a success, so I’m delighted for the team that this has been recognised.”

Claire Tooze, SDS Area Manager

The report followed a week-long review process in February when Education Scotland assessors observed the work of staff based in the centre and local schools, as well as speaking with staff, customers and partner agencies about their experiences of SDS’s career services.

Publication of the review was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

You can read the review of North Ayrshire’s career service on the Education Scotland website.

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