Senior Phase Work Experience

For pupils of North Berwick High School, work placements are an important part of our career education programme. We encourage all senior phase pupils to seek a placement with a local employer or organisation during their education. Pupils are entitled to one work experience week in their school career and this can be undertaken from S4, however pupils can also experience additional, lengthier spells if they wish. During this time, they are treated as young employees of the organisation and are engaged in a range of tasks or duties which allow pupils to learn about the skills and attitudes that employers are seeking. In our experience pupils have found that the placement encourages them to think positively about the qualities and skills that they may need to develop and become more informed about the careers they may be interested in.

Visit My World of Work for more information about why work experience is important.

All work experience requests must be submitted no less than 6 weeks in advance of the placement. We take the health, safety and well-being of our pupils very seriously, and this still applies when they are on their work experience placement.  East Lothian Council works closely with placement providers to help them provide a safe and secure working environment, and a Health & Safety Workplace Assessor will always visit the premises to carry out a risk assessment.

There will be two Work Experience Windows of Opportunity during the year:

Monday 22nd – 26th June 2020

Monday 12th – 16th October 2020

Pupils can chose which window they would prefer in advance and for some pupils they may wish to save their week until a later opportunity in S5/S6. The aim of this is to allow pupils to have a meaningful work experience when they are ready. For some pupils, due to their age, it may be that opportunities are not available until they are 16.

There are a number of ways a pupil can find a suitable work experience placement:

Self-Found: where a pupil has the responsibility to locate a work placement. This is normally done through family and friends. Please see the section below.

WorkIT: where a pupil applies on East Lothian’s Work Experience website with listed companies. We cannot guarantee these will result in a placement.

NHS: for pupils aged 16 +. These can be by request or self found.

Flexible/Extended Placements: where a bespoke placement can be arranged.

During holidays: where pupils may decide to arrange a placement during their own time.



Ideally, we request that pupils initially seek a Self Found placement as this can mean a confirmed opportunity.

We are presently piloting a NEW method for requesting Work Placements. The new system requires pupils to forward an online Request Form to employers. To request this form, please email  the following address with the pupil’s name, class and potential employer:

This Request Form is a legal requirement in order to assess health and safety for the proposed placement. The council will not allow any placements to take place without an inspection. The school will inform the pupil when the placement has been authorised.



Pupils who wish to use the WorkIt website will be briefed on its use and can explore the opportunities during the end of their S3 year. S4-6 pupils will have optional refresher sessions should they want to access the database at a later point. This will allow guidance teachers to confirm placements and for pupils to make suitable preparations.  If pupils have forgotten their log in details they should contact their guidance teacher.



Pupils who wish experience in the NHS Lothian must apply using the Senior Phase School Application Form. If a pupil is applying for a different health trust they should see their guidance teacher. Participants must be 16 to take part.  Please also read the NHS Lothian Work Experience Booklet for further information.



This is a bespoke placement and can be a couple of hours a week for a set term or an agreement which lasts longer than a week. Some pupils may decide this is a good idea to top up a timetable with valuable experience. These MUST be negotiated with Guidance staff before contacting employers.



This is where pupils may decide to arrange a placement during their own time. This is still an experience of the working world and is recognised by the school and future employers/education providers. It might make sense to use time during summer holidays or perhaps at the end of study leave. Placements during these periods still require the self found online Request Form to be sent to employers. See the arrangements above.


For further information please contact your guidance teacher.

All pupils must also complete the Code of Conduct prior to their placement. Click Pupils Code Of Conduct to download a copy.