Preparing for adulthood

The themes of preparing for adulthood underpin all aspects of the curriculum as we advocate equal life chances for all pupils as they move into adulthood.  

Preparing for adulthood means preparing for:

• Higher education and/or employment – including exploring different employment options such as volunteering, enterprise activities and supported employment, alongside opportunities for paid employment and self-employment.

• Independent living – this means young people having choice, control and freedom over their lives and the support they have, their accommodation and living arrangements, including supported living.

• Community inclusion – having friends, participating in and contributing to the local community.

• Good health – being as healthy as possible, including physical health and mental well-being.

We recognise that preparing for adulthood should begin as early as possible to support pupils and families to have high aspirations for the future. Therefore, the curriculum at Discovery Special Academy is designed to develop skills for adulthood throughout all pathways in ways that are relevant to the stage of development of each pupil.

The table in the downloads shows some of the ways the preparing for adulthood themes are approached within the academy.


At Discovery Special Academy we believe that ‘Through Discovery we Grow’.  This is at the heart of everything we do and so we believe that Preparation for Adulthood begins through exploration and investigation and the development of focus and attention.  With this in mind, we introduce our students, from EYFS onwards, to a range of activities designed to stimulate intrigue and interest into the world of work and develop the communication skills, confidence, resilience and problem-solving skills needed to be successful.  This builds to incorporate a wide-ranging careers programme to guide our students through their choices in life.

Careers Leader: Andy Smyth


Key Stage 3 Careers

Tees Valley Careers Enterprise Challenge Week was a success for Discovery! The children participated in a competition against other SEND schools across Teesside to create the best wind turbine from recycled materials. The group worked very hard all week trying their best to create a working turbine, which involved lots of trial and error. Eventually, we had a finished product the children were happy with. Discovery won an award for the school who has shown the best teamwork skills and two of our students also won special awards too. The children had such an exciting and rewarding week.

Year 7/8 met with a PCSO and explored online safety. They talked to him about his job and asked him questions about what it was like to work for the police.

Power of Women

Students from Years 6 and 7 took part in a Power of Women event.  In this event they explored gender inequality and also looked at a range of careers and opportunities.  They considered their skills and the things they like doing and talked about what they would like to be when they are older.  Some of our students will become Power of Women Ambassadors – they will have to go through an application and interview process – and will work to spread the word about equality. Please see galleries for pictures.

Following a rigorous process, our Power of Women Ambassadors were chosen.  They can’t wait to start and spread the word about equality.  

Stem Event- Creating a Sustainable City

Year 7 are taking part in an exciting project to create a sustainable city.  There are several parts to this project – the first was carried out in the Academy and involved the students thinking about what sustainability means, what we need as essential for life and what we want as desirable for life.  They then thought about how they could make a city more sustainable, considering the use of renewable energy, thinking about commuter routes, considering clean air etc.  Next, they built their own city and gave explanations about what they had done and why.  The next part of the project will involve the students visiting Teesside University to present their ideas. Please see galleries for pictures.

The Gatsby Benchmark

Labour Market Information

Use the link to compare different jobs.  This can help you to decide if a job or career will be right for you and it will show you how many jobs are predicted to come up in the next few years.



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