Secondary: FAQs

Is a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check (formerly known as CRB) check needed?
Do teachers get to see full volunteer CVs in advance of meeting them?
Does anyone vet what employee volunteers say in their profile?
Can an individual sign up without employer backing?
How old are volunteers?
Who is most likely to sign up as an ITF volunteer?
Will people try to sell me goods and services?
How does the registration process work?
Will it replace existing face-to-face careers advice?
Do you cover primary schools?
Are Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland covered?
How are you engaging SMEs in working with schools/colleges?
Will school alumni networks be involved?
How will we reach all regions? Especially rural areas where there are few employers?
Why has something like this not been done before?
Does Inspiring the Future encourage localism?
Will you extend the menu of volunteering options over time?
How much will brokers be involved in ITF?
Can employee volunteers make the first approach to my school?
Can I register on a tablet or mobile device?


Is a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check (formerly known as CRB) check needed?
For Inspiring the Future activities there is no need to be DBS checked as volunteers will not have unsupported access to students. There is also no need for DBS checks because volunteers will mostly go through their employers. Schools are experts on child protection and they choose who has contact with their students.

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Do teachers get to see full volunteer CVs in advance of meeting them?
Teachers see short profiles of employee volunteers which the volunteers have filled in themselves. They can a supply full CV but it is not a requirement.

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Does anyone vet what employee volunteers say in their profile?
We take it on trust they have been honest about their skills and experience. There are also legal terms and conditions that they must agree to before registration.

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Can an individual sign up without employer backing?
About half of Inspiring the Future volunteers have signed up as individual as opposed to go through an employer of professional body scheme.

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How old are volunteers?
They are aged 18 right up to retirement age, and we want people of all ages, levels and backgrounds. People in their 20’s are close in age to secondary school/college students who will be able to relate to them, but people with experience can also be invaluable to young people’s decision making.

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Who is most likely to sign up as an ITF volunteer?
Anyone with experience of work can volunteer. However, we envisage that there will be a lot of people in their 20s and also apprentices where information about the sector is hard to access. People in their early and mid-career who want to improve their communication skills, and impart their knowledge back.

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Will people try to sell me goods and services?
This is not allowed under the terms and conditions that employee volunteers must agree to on registration. Any trying to sell anything will immediately be removed from the system or asked to stop.

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How does the registration process work?
Follow the ‘register now’ link from the home page, or the pages for schools/collegesand governors. Click ‘Teacher register here’ or ‘Governor register here’. This will take you to the Inspiring the Future portal, where you will be asked to provide a few basic details, and your email address. Once your registration is approved, you will receive an email containing a temporary password. When you log in using this password, you will be asked to change it to something more memorable. On first entering the portal, we’ll ask you to provide a few more details about yourself, and what you need as a school/governor. You’ll be asked to select activities that you need help with, for schools this is currently – Career Insights, Mock Interviews, Help with CVs, Reading or Number partner in a primary school, or volunteers interested in being contacted about being a school governor. For school governors, you can only message volunteers interested in being contacted about being a school governor. To find volunteers, schools/governors go to ‘Find Volunteers’ once logged in, and generate a list of volunteers in their area who can offer the activity specified. Schools/Governors can view brief profiles of the volunteers including their jobs, and what they can offer. (Private email addresses and phone numbers are not visible to either party). From the ’Find Volunteers’ page, they can message appropriate volunteers and ask them to get involved in an activity they have coming up either individually or on mass. Volunteers accept/decline the event, and if accepted, once it has taken place schools/governors complete automated feedback forms. We ask four or five questions about how the event went. We strongly recommend that this is completed, as it allows us to keep an eye of the quality of volunteers and whether the service is working for both parties. We also use your feedback to report to funders, which will help to keep this service completely free to schools and volunteers.

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Will it replace existing face-to-face careers advice?
No, that is not the objective. Inspiring the Future does offer face-to-face careers advice, guidance and information from volunteers but it is complementary to other government provided national careers provision. It offers career insights to help inspire students.

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Do you cover primary schools?
Inspiring the Future was rolled out to primary schools in May 2014 working with the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT), under the name Primary Futures.

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Are Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland covered?
Currently, we are only officially launched in England, but we do have schools and volunteers registered in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. As soon as we meet a critical mass we will look to officially launch in these countries as well.

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How are you engaging SMEs in working with schools/colleges?
We do this through specific campaigns and through our strong links with the Federation of Small Business, British Chambers of Commerce, Institute of Directors and the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. All of these employer representative bodies sit on our charity Partnership Board.

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Will school alumni networks be involved?
Volunteers when creating their individual profiles, can select their old school/college from a search list if they are interested in being approached about going back there to undertake an Inspiring the Future activity. We have recently launched the ability for teachers to be able to search and invite volunteers into their old school/college.

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How will we reach all regions? Especially rural areas where there are few employers?
We will use local and regional media and create a bank of local spokespeople over time. We can also use our stakeholder networks, large employers with branches, outlets or offices nationally and also gateway organisations, such as the CIPD, IoD, BCC, FSB, TUC and CBI who also have regional branches or chambers.

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Why has something like this not been done before?
Careers fairs and employers being involved in careers information is obviously not new but bringing together the worlds of education and employment in such a coherent way and having the innovative technology to enable this makes Inspiring the Future so valuable.

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Does Inspiring the Future encourage localism?
Yes, it does encourage people to connect with their local schools, colleges and community.

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Will you extend the menu of volunteering options over time?
Yes, in the future we will add to the volunteering menu options to include activities such as work tasters and work experience for students.

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How much will brokers be involved in ITF?
Brokers (such as education and business partnership organisations) will be involved. We will highlight and explain the role of brokers and signpost people to them when and if appropriate. We also work with the IEBE (professional body for brokers) and they sit on our Partnership Board.

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Can employee volunteers make the first approach to my school?
No, the Inspiring the Future system is designed for teachers and school/college staff to contact employee volunteers, and not vice versa. Teachers/school and college staff do the inviting.

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Can I register on a tablet or mobile device?

Yes, with the launch of the new Inspiring the Future portal, you can now use Inspiring the Future on mobiles and tablets to register and message/invite and reply to volunteers.