iCeGs Annual Lecture 2019

Is Gatsby great for careers education? A vision for the future of career learning’ - David Andrews, former Visiting Fellow, International Centre for Guidance Studies, University of Derby

Event Held on: Wednesday 11 December 2019, 1.00pm – University of Derby, Kedleston Road Campus

Annual Lecture Information

David has been working on careers education and guidance in schools for the past 40 years. He started teaching in secondary schools in the year in which Bill Law and Tony Watts published the DOTS framework. He has seen the position of careers education in the curriculum grow and develop, reaching its peak at the turn of the century when it was part of the statutory curriculum, with a national programme of support funded by the central government and further support and training provided at a local level across the country. This was all undermined in 2012 when the statutory duties on schools to provide careers education and work-related learning were removed. Full details of this story can be studied in his 2011 book, Careers Education in Schools (Highflyers Publishing).

He has now written a second edition of the book, chronicling developments over the past decade. In his lecture, he delved into the early history of careers education in English schools and then examined in more detail what happened in the past seven years. His analysis highlights the quantity and quality of career learning in schools remains patchy, varying from very good to severely lacking. Evidence is emerging that the Gatsby benchmarks are beginning to drive an improvement in careers programmes in schools, but there is a risk that the absence of any explicit reference to having a planned programme of careers education in the curriculum could lead to this key element of career guidance being overlooked. He outlined the danger of not seizing the opportunity to ensure that young people are provided with the knowledge and skills that will equip them to navigate and shape their future careers on a lifelong basis.

He put forward practical proposals for addressing this gap in the current careers strategy and argued that we will need a greater degree of collaboration within the sector if we are to provide future generations with the learning, both for and about career, that they need and deserve.

Andrews, D (2019). Is Gatsby great for careers education? A vision for the future of career learning in schools. Derby. International Centre for Guidance Studies, University of Derby. 


To buy his book click link: Careers Education in Schools. 2nd Edition - £20.00 (free UK Delivery)

Please note, that due to the Coronavirus outbreak, the sale of this book is unavailable. We are currently unable to confirm when normal service will resume.


David Andrews OBE started his career in careers in 1979, when he was given responsibility for work experience at St Ivo School in Cambridgeshire. Three years later he was appointed head of careers, a post he held for five years. From this position David was seconded to Cambridgeshire Careers Service for a year to undertake a series of projects to support careers education and guidance in schools, including introducing a careers profile for young people, piloting the JIIG-CAL computer-assisted learning package and establishing one of the early regional courses for careers teachers at the University of Cambridge Institute of Education.

In 1987 David moved to Hertfordshire LEA, initially as County Adviser for Careers, Guidance and PSE. He stayed for eleven years, latterly as Adviser for 14-19 Education, but when it became clear the that the role of local authority education adviser was moving firmly in the direction of inspection and data monitoring, David decided to leave and set up as a self-employed consultant and trainer. For the last 20 years, he has led training courses, evaluation studies and research projects, provided consultancy and advice to schools and colleges, careers organisations and central government and spoken at numerous conferences. One of David’s particular areas of interest has been the leadership and management of careers work in schools, and in 2018 he co-authored, with Tristram Hooley, The Careers Leader Handbook (Trotman Publishing).

David is a Fellow of the National Institute for Career Education and Counselling (NICEC). In 2003 he was awarded the OBE for services to careers education, and in 2018 the Career Development Institute (CDI) recognised his work with the Rodney Cox Lifetime Achievement Award.

Watch the lecture

David Andrews Presenting at Annual Lecture 2019