Skills for Work and Living

Who is the programme for?

If you are between 16 and 25 years old and interested in exploring a vocational programme this is a great choice for you. You will attend College four days per week, Monday to Thursday from 9:30am to 3:30pm.

What are the entry requirements?

To apply you will need to ask your Local Authority to consult with Orchard Hill College. All students on this programme must have an active EHCP. We would like to meet you for an assessment before you join us at College. At assessment we want to make sure this is the right programme for your aspirations, your interests and what you would like to learn at College.

About the programme

This programme has been designed to prepare you for the next exciting steps in your employment journey. We will work with you as an individual to build a bespoke programme to help you to achieve the outcomes in your EHCP. The programme will support you to prepare for adulthood in all four pathways – Good Health, Independent Living, Friends and Relationships in the Community and Employment. To help you achieve your employment outcome you will decide which vocational pathway to take from what interests you. We will support you and get you ready to achieve your ambitions whatever they may be so that you can live your best possible life after College.

Vocational areas 

As part of this programme you can choose to focus on a vocational pathway that interests you, we offer the following pathways, click on the button at the top of this page for more details on each area:

  • Animal Care
  • Building Maintenance
  • Catering and Hospitality
  • Charitable Work
  • Customer Service
  • Digital Media
  • Expressive Art
  • Hair and Beauty
  • Horticulture
  • Motor Vehicle Maintenance
  • Retail
  • Upcycling
  •  Volunteering and Contributing to my Community

Here’s how we will achieve it together

We will help you secure your next steps in employment. This might mean moving to paid employment, an apprenticeship or further education and training by providing you with the right skills, knowledge and experiences you need.

We want you to become as independent as possible and throughout your time with us we will support you to make new friends, travel more independently and try new things at College and in your local community.

You will have opportunities to:

  • take part in vocational taster sessions
  • get involved in volunteering, supported or part-time employment
  • develop your practical animal care skills
  • get involved and take part in our enrichment activities at College and in the community including; creative and performing arts, sport, health and wellbeing

At the end of the programme you will have:

  • accessed valuable work experience
  • achieved an appropriate accreditation that is meaningful and relevant to you
  • your own personalised job-ready pack including references and a digital CV
  • grown your circle of friends and support network

You will be able to live more independently or have transitioned to supported living, a home sharing scheme, or a personalised assisted living scheme.

Skills for Work and Living is offered in a safe setting across all of our College regions.


Throughout the programme we will support you with your maths and English. This might mean working towards specific accreditation as well as developing the specific maths and English Skills you need in your work setting. We will help develop your core skills in Communication, Self- regulation and Digital Skills, which will allow you to successfully access your learning and the community.

As well as the teaching team delivering your programme we will provide you with any specialist therapy and nursing support you may need, where stated in your EHCP.