At 16, each child leaving school gets a Record of Achievement folder. The National Record of achievement or NRA is recognised throughout the UK and can be used as evidence of the holder’s achievements whilst at school.
The NRA can be taken to job interviews, colleges, apprenticeships or whatever route you plan to take on leaving school. It shows other people how you’ve spent your time in education and the positive things that you have to offer. The NRA is also a useful way to see what you’ve achieved so far in black and white and think about what to do next.
Before the NRA
There are a number of processes that lead up to you receiving your NRA.
Throughout your time at school you’ll be required to take part in a number of activities relating to the National Record of Achievement Folder, these will include:
- Keeping evidence of achievements and building a portfolio
- Assessment of your progress through reports and examination
- Planning your next actions and setting targets to improve your NRA
What does the Record of Achievement Folder Look Like?
The NRA is generally presented in a burgundy folder, but your school may have chosen a different type of folder for their students. A number of standard sheets should be placed inside the folder including:
- Your name, address and personal details
- A summary of your educational achievements
- A personal statement
You can also include any other records that could be useful when applying for a job, apprenticeship or college place, such as:
- Credits and qualifications
- Work experience history
- Employment history
- Attendance records
In addition the NRA will include an Accreditation Certificate which demonstrates that your school has monitored and organised the processes of achievement correctly.
You should be preparing your Record of Achievement folder throughout year 11 as job and college interviews can happen quite quickly. In most cases if you’re planning to attend college, interviews will start around Christmas time so your NRA needs to be prepared by then.
Take evidence of anything you feel may be relevant to what you want to do. For example, if you want to study English then take photocopies of your most impressive essays. If you’re planning to find an apprenticeship in the building trade then take photos of the things you learn or anything you make at school which could support your application.
However, it’s also important to tailor your NRA so it’s fit for purpose. In other words be selective about what you include when you’re showing it to different people. For instance, if you’re planning a practical apprenticeship your interviewer will want to know your GCSE grades and see evidence of your practical achievements, they won’t want to read your essay on Richard III.
During year’s 10 and 11 you’re entitled to lots of help with your NRA. Your personal tutor should have at least three meetings with you to look at your folder and help you get organised. In addition, you’ll get help writing your personal statement and be offered opportunities that will allow you to demonstrate what you can do and get suitable certification to prove your achievements.