What can you do to help?
As you might expect the first stop for careers guidance is your teenager's school. Schools are responsible for giving young people access to careers information, advice and guidance about all the choices available.
That could be a traineeship, an apprenticeship, a work based learning opportunity, going to college, going to a sixth form provider (because they offer different courses) or getting a job.
The key thing is they must ensure that this advice is independent and impartial (ie. access to a professional careers adviser who is independent of the school and not a member of the teaching staff).
Some useful websites and further reading can be found at the bottom of this page.
Find out as much information as you can
It's important to attend parents’ evenings and options events, and talk to tutors or a Personal Adviser. It is also important to read carefully through any options booklets or information which the school may give you.
Encourage your teenager to stay in learning
The longer your teenager can stay in learning, the better. They will be better qualified and are more likely to earn more in the future.
There are lots of reasons why your son or daughter should start thinking about careers and their future now.
* So they have something to aim for.
* So they can find out what fantastic opportunities are available to them.
* So they have the right information about the career they are interested in.
* If they just think through a few things, they could soon have an idea of what they would like to do, what they need to do to get there and what help they need.
To make good choices for their future, your son or daughter needs to know about:
* questions they can ask
* what choices they have
* getting information, advice and guidance
* how they can get in touch with a careers/personal adviser
* setting themselves goals to develop their ideas
And, of course, as the main support and key influencer of your son or daughters and their decisions, it is important that you are also aware of the routes and opportunities available to them.
As of 2015, young people will be expected to stay in learning until they are 18 years old. You can read more about this, and how it will affect your son or daughter, on the page Staying in learning until 18.
Get to know your teenager’s learning style
Different teenagers prefer different ways of learning. Talk to your teenager and find out how they prefer to learn. Some subjects involve more classroom-based learning and others may be more practical and work-related. This will help them to choose the right subjects. An excellent website for looking at personality traits and the types of jobs suited to them is
Career Point (http://careerpoint-gm.co.uk/parents-carers) is a Greater Manchester careers website that has further information on how to support your child or you could download the Parents Guide to Careers Guidance.