We need to place more value on technical and vocational education

Last month, 13 Studio Schools and 12 University Technical College opened across the country and tens more are in development. These new schools aim to provide academic and vocational routes that suit young people best and will create an education system to compete with the world’s best such as Germany and Netherlands where notably youth unemployment is considerably lower.A YouGov poll of 1624 people found that 47% thought there was too much focus on academic subjects at school and not enough practical, job-related training.

Young people will have more opportunity to specialise in high performance engineering, computer science, technical events management, creative industries and will have access to state of the art equipment. Employers are given more authority meaning that students benefit from a curriculum designed by experts in the field and are then supported to learn through work placements and access to industry standard facilities and equipment. Employers are given more authority which allows students to benefit from a curriculum designed by experts in the field and are then supported to learn through work placements, access to industry standard facilities and equipment.

International evidence suggests that greater employer involvement in education plays an important role in maintaining quality and supporting labour market needs with the studies offered by education providers.  I am in full support of the creating and improving the quality of technical and vocational routes. However, greater awareness and positive publicity of this route in needed to combat the negative stigma of studying non-academic subjects. Additionally, through efficient and effective regulation the government needs to ensure that the curriculum is a balance between knowledge for the labour market and education for life.

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