Technical Schools Produce Career Confident Teenagers

  |  Published: Sep 4th 2015
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Figures published by Baker Dearing Educational Trust show almost 9 out of 10 students that attend University Technical Colleges (87%) feel confident in their ability to succeed in work. What’s more, 86% are confident of getting a job that suits their skills when they leave education. The findings are taken from a recent survey of 850 14-18 year old students from UTCs across England.

The survey also revealed that nearly three quarters (70%) of UTC students felt that their prospects were better than if they stayed in a mainstream school.

When comparing their UTC to their previous school, UTCs came out top in all aspects. The difference was most stark when comparing links to businesses (85% said they were better) and specialist equipment (86% said it was better).

Two thirds of UTC students (68%) already know the career they want to pursue when they leave education. 40% plan to go to University and around a quarter (26%) plan to do an apprenticeship.

Facilities and equipment are the most important factor (95%) for students when they are considering a UTC followed by hands on learning (92%), opportunities for work experience (90%) and the technical specialism (89%).

In March this year, The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) published findings from an international study about gender equality in schools. The report identified that girls lack self-confidence in science and maths. However, data from the Baker Dearing sample suggests that girls at UTCs in years 10 and 11 are more confident as far as science and maths are concerned than the average schoolgirl their age in the UK.

Lord Baker, Chairman of Baker Dearing Educational Trust, the charity behind UTCs, said: “These findings confirm that students who attend University Technical Colleges are gaining an education that gives them greater confidence in finding a job, one that suits their skills and pays well. Although it is still early days, UTCs are already playing an important role in helping to train and nurture a future workforce of highly skilled technicians, scientists and engineers.”

Russ Brittain, Head of Human Resources at Taylor Wimpey, one of the UK’s largest homebuilders, commented: “UTCs provide an effective platform for students to gain highly-valuable work experience and business acumen while still in education, enabling them to confidently take the next steps in their chosen profession and secure employment opportunities.”

Russ added: “We’ve been working in partnership with Buckinghamshire UTC for a number of years and during this time have seen many enthusiastic students achieve excellent results and develop into driven young professionals, some of whom are already working towards joining Taylor Wimpey on a permanent basis once they complete their studies.”

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