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Public Services (BTEC)

General Subject Information

Public Services is taught at Key Stage 5 only. Students have 5 hours of Public Services each week.

The subject prepares students for the world of work, access to university or the opportunity to join one of the main public services.

Students will be  assessed via coursework which will be presented in the form of

  • Power points
  • Word Documents
  • Leaflets
  • Posters
  • Or group presentations

There is no examination

In Year 12 students study 3 units

  • Unit 1 – Government, Policies and the Public Services
  • Unit 3 – Citizenship, Diversity and the Public Services
  • Unit 8 – Understand the impact of war, conflict and terrorism on the Public Services


In Year 13 students study the further 3 units

  • Unit 2 – Leadership and teamwork in the Public Services
  • Unit 5 – Physical preparation, Health and lifestyle for Public Services
  • Unit 17 – Police Powers in the Public Services

Staff

Level 3 Subject Information

BTEC LEVEL 3

Sixth form course information can be found in the sixth form courses page.

Job Opportunities

Royal Marines officer

Royal Marines officers lead teams of commandos in combat situations, at sea and on land.

WHAT DOES A ROYAL MARINES OFFICER DO?

Royal Marines (RM) officers lead teams of commandos in combat situations, at sea or on shore. Increasingly, RM officers are involved in peace-keeping and humanitarian operations.

As an RM officer, you would be responsible for the day-to-day welfare and discipline of the marines under your command. Your duties would involve leading the troop and making decisions about its training and deployment.

You could also have a specialist role such as:

•             landing craft officer – planning and leading beach assaults

•             signals officer – overseeing all radio communications

•             heavy weapons officer – deciding on the tactics and deployment of weapons like anti-tank missiles

•             weapons training officer – advising on the use of small arms and training snipers

•             Special Boat Service (SBS) officer – carrying out special missions from ships and aircraft as part of the special forces unit

•             mountain leaders – leading and instructing commando troops in mountain exercises, with expertise in Arctic survival

•             intelligence officer – collecting, coordinating and interpreting intelligence reports

•             pilot officer – flying the full range of aircraft and helicopters used by the Navy and Marines

•             physical training and sports officer – developing and supervising training in commando units and training centres

•             staff duty officer – dealing with administration, training, planning and logistics

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO BECOME A ROYAL MARINES OFFICER?

To start Royal Marines officer training, you will need:

•             to be between 17 and 25 years old

•             to be at least 151.5cm tall

•             to be a British or dual nationality British citizen

•             to be in good health and physically fit

•             a minimum of five GCSEs (A-C), including English and maths

•             a minimum of two A levels.

If you have a degree you can apply through the Direct Graduate Entry route


Police officer

Police officers investigate and prevent crime.

WHAT DOES A POLICE OFFICER DO?

Police officers investigate and prevent crime, as well as maintaining law and order. You could be based in a police station, or working as a beat officer on foot, on a bicycle, or in a patrol car. You’ll need to respond to a variety of calls and situations so good communication skills are essential.

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO BECOME A POLICE OFFICER?

The requirements to join the police vary between forces. Generally you will need to have lived in the UK for three years and be over the age of 18. You will also have to pass background and security checks. You will also have to pass physical and medical tests.


FIRE FIGHTER

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO BECOME A FIREFIGHTER?

You will need to be 18 years old to start training as a firefighter. Every fire brigade sets its own entry requirements – to find out more about these, contact the chief fire officer’s office for the brigade you’d like to join. Job specific training is usually provided by the fire service. You will be expected to pass physical and medical fitness tests to begin your training.

A number of colleges offer courses in uniformed public services. These are not essential, but are a good preparation for a variety of careers in the police, fire service and armed forces.

Some colleges work with local fire brigades to offer a short part-time fire service pre-recruitment course. These could be a good way to prepare for the selection tests. You may also be able to take the Level 2 Award/Certificate/Diploma in Fire and Rescue Services in the Community, with your local service. This covers some of the knowledge and skills you need in the job.

Contact your local college and fire service to see what’s available in your area.


Prison officer

Prison officers supervise inmates in prisons, remand centres and young offenders' institutions.

WHAT DOES A PRISON OFFICER DO?

As a prison officer, your work would vary according to the type of prison, its level of security and the age of the prisoners.

Your duties are likely to include:

•             keeping inmates secure

•             assessing prisoners

•             carrying out security checks and search procedures

•             promoting anti-bullying and suicide prevention policies

•             supervising prisoners

•             maintaining order – this can involve using authorised physical control and restraint

•             preparing inmates for release through rehabilitation programmes

•             providing support to prisoners who are vulnerable

•             taking part in programmes to help prisoners reflect on their offending behaviour

•             writing reports on prisoners.

With experience, you could take on additional duties such as training staff and supervising a section of a prison.

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO BECOME A PRISON OFFICER?

To join the public prison service in England and Wales, you will need to complete an application and pass the initial eligibility requirements.

In general, you need:

•             to be 18 or over

•             to be a UK or Commonwealth citizen, European Union (EU) or other European Economic Area (EEA) citizen, or a foreign national with the right to stay and work in the UK for an indefinite period


Customs officer

Customs officers stop banned items from entering or leaving the country, and collect taxes & duties.

WHAT DOES A CUSTOMS OFFICER DO?

As customs officer, also known as a detection officer, you would work in airports and seaports collecting customs duties and preventing smuggling and illegal trade.

You might:

•             search luggage, vehicles and travellers

•             check customs documents

•             question people who have been found with illegal items or goods over the allowance

•             arrest and charge people

•             prepare reports and witness statements

•             take on specialist roles such as dog handling or undercover and surveillance work

When necessary, you would go to court as a witness and would work closely with other agencies, like the police and the Home Office.

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO BECOME A CUSTOMS OFFICER?

You would normally join as an administrative assistant or assistant officer and earn promotion to customs officer or detection officer. Recruitment directly to officer grade sometimes takes place.

To join at officer grade you will probably need five GCSEs (A-C) including English and maths, plus two A levels or equivalent qualifications. You will normally need two GCSEs (A-C) to join HMRC as an administrative assistant, and five GCSEs (A-C) including maths and English for assistant officer jobs.


Army soldier

Army soldiers work in a variety of different roles in conflict zones.

WHAT DOES AN ARMY SOLDIER DO?

As a British army soldier, you could be working in conflict zones across the world, or on a peacekeeping or humanitarian mission. The job requires a lot of international travel and often being in dangerous situations. Army soldiers are fit and hardworking and need to be able to function well as part of a team.

There are many different job roles you could perform in the army. As a soldier in a regiment, you could be working in two main areas:

•             combat arms – part of the fighting forces like infantry, cavalry or armoured corps.

•             combat support arms – providing support through IT, engineering, communications, logistics or healthcare. The army provides full training to perform the different kinds of jobs required.

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO BECOME AN ARMY SOLDIER?

You do not need a degree or specific post-GCSE qualifications to become an army solider. To join the army, you must be aged between 16 and 33. You will need to meet the army’s eligibility criteria. If you are aged under 18, you will need consent from a parent or guardian to join the army


Paramedic

Paramedics are highly skilled professionals who treat patients in emergency medical situations.

WHAT DOES A PARAMEDIC DO?

A paramedic will often be the first medical professional to arrive at the scene, and might work as part of a two-person ambulance crew, or on their own in an emergency-response car, motorbike, or bicycle (in rural settings).

They might even provide vital advice over the phone, from a control centre or clinical setting.

In any situation, they will assess patients’ conditions, make important, potentially life-saving decisions about their care, including whether they can be treated at the scene, or need immediate transfer to a hospital.

As a paramedic you could:

•             use high-tech equipment, such as defibrillators and intravenous drips

•             administer oxygen and medication

•             be trained to drive an emergency vehicle

•             resuscitate and stabilise patients

•             make key clinical decisions using your professional judgement

•             deal with patients, their friends and relatives, and members of the public

•             work alongside the police, and fire and rescue services

•             work shifts during all hours of the day, and go out in all weathers

•             work closely with other healthcare professionals, such as GPs, hospital staff, and mental health teams

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO BECOME A PARAMEDIC?

You’ll need an approved qualification in paramedic science.

Once you’ve completed your studies, you’ll need to register with the Health Care Professions Council (HCPC), so you can work for the ambulance service.

You can get your qualification in three different ways:

1.            Study for a diploma of higher education, foundation degree, or degree in paramedic science.

2.            Take a degree apprenticeship scheme – where you’ll combine work, training, and study, as a paid employee. Your apprenticeship will take a minimum of three years.

3.            Apply directly to the ambulance service to become a student paramedic, where you’ll study while you work. These schemes can be competitive and only tend to be released once or twice a year. It will take around two to three years to complete your training, after which you’ll gain Newly Qualified Paramedic status

You may have an advantage if you have experience of working in the police or armed forces, as a security officer or probation officer, or with organisations that support ex-offenders

Revision

There is no exam for this course