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teacher and pupil in office

Talking Futures

Talking Futures provides a suite of resources, activities and practical guidance to help you engage parents in supporting their children to decide upon their next best step.

Introducing Talking Futures

The Careers & Enterprise Company is pleased to be working in partnership with The Gatsby Foundation, continuing to build on their early pilot work on parental engagement. To learn more about the pilot, the research and our future plans, take a look at our Ambition Statement here.  

Parents, carers and guardians have significant influence on their child’s career decision making which is why it is crucial to equip all parents to have impartial, constructive and well-informed careers conversations Talking Futures is designed to help you facilitate this.

Careers guidance is key to social mobility. It provides young people – whatever their background – with the skills and information they need to make good decisions about their best next step.

The Labour Market and the various education and training pathways open to young people are complex, leaving many parents feeling ill-equipped to advise their children on something outside of their lived experience.

Our work to build upon The Gatsby Foundation pilot (you can find a summary of insights from the 2020-21 pilot here will innovate new approaches so that Careers Leaders can embed sustainable parental engagement methods in everyday practice

Talking Futures toolkit

Talking Futures is a suite of resources to help you support parents’ role in careers decision-making and increase their participation in your activities. Designed by the Gatsby Foundation, it is based on research exploring how institutions can best support parents to help young people make informed careers and education decisions.

Resources feature a range of tools and activities including:

  • Parent-facing activities for events such as parents’ evenings and tailored family learning sessions.
  • Student-facing activities to reinforce parents’ role in decision-making.
  • Support for Careers Leaders to identify activities that will complement existing provision.
  • Practical tips and guidance on how to deliver each type of activity.
  • A range of preparation activities to help you and parents get the most out of each session

Click on the Toolkit and other links below to access the resources 

The Gatsby Foundation is the philanthropic trust of David Sainsbury (Lord Sainsbury of Turville). Through its work in education, in 2014 the trust developed the eight Gatsby Benchmarks for Good Career Guidance, which have been incorporated into the statutory guidance for secondary schools and colleges in England to follow. The Benchmarks are:

  1. A stable careers programme
  2. Learning from career and labour market information
  3. Addressing the needs of each pupil
  4. Linking curriculum learning to careers
  5. Encounters with employers and employees
  6. Experiences of workplaces
  7. Encounters with further and higher education
  8. Personal guidance

Find out more about the Gatsby Foundation’s work in education and the Gatsby Benchmarks