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From apprenticeships to clearing, all your options if your A-level and GCSE grades are not what you wanted

DIDN’T quite make the grade this time? Don’t panic. 

While there is confusion over how the A-level grades have been decided, help is at hand — especially if your exam results, which were released on Thursday, were lower than you hoped for. 

With students unable to sit exams due to the pandemic, GCSE pupils in England — who get their results next Thursday — and A-level students are being promised results will be no lower than their mock exams.

To help ease inevitable concerns, we have teamed up with the National Careers Service to help you plan next steps and get back on track.

Gillian Keegan, Minister for Apprenticeships and Skills, says: “I know what an anxious time this is if you haven’t quite got the results you were hoping for.

“You are not alone and there is a great deal of support. There are still lots of brilliant options available.”

Here, Sophie Graham of the National Careers Service explains what to do if your grades are not what you wanted. 

THE NHS has issued a rallying cry to school leavers to apply to study nursing.

Ruth May, chief nursing officer for England, says: “In the past six months, nurses and midwives have played a leading role in the fight against coronavirus.

“Uncertain times lie ahead but the country and the NHS will always need nurses. And nursing will always offer a rewarding and varied career, making it a strong choice for any young people considering their options.”

Apply at

Meanwhile, the early careers network Springpod is offering virtual work experience with the NHS. See for details.

PUB chain GREENE KING has 150 places on its award-winning apprenticeship programme. See

FITNESS guru Joe Wicks is urging school leavers to consider a career that prioritises their mental health ahead of their wealth.

Joe, aka the Body Coach, was talking on new podcast Your Future Forward, run by digital marketing apprentices Dexter Hutchings, 21, from Epsom in Surrey, and Molly Johnstone, 19, of Leicester. Joe said: “I have never been motivated by wealth.

“Exercise was hugely beneficial for me as a child. I struggled with attention deficit disorder and behavioural difficulties. For a career, I chose something I enjoy doing.”

Listen via Spotify and follow @YourFutureForward on social media. 

BRADFORDS BUILDING SUPPLIES has school-leaver vacancies for apprentices and sales staff. Email [email protected]

SUPPORTING your child to make the right choices after exams can be tricky. 

Kevin Parker, boss of video interviewer HireVue, here shares his insights on helping support your youngsters. 

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