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What does 2014 hold in store for UTCs?

2 January 2014

The Telegraph reports that the Duke of York is enthusiastic about the ‘UTC movement’ after opening a new University Technical College in Reading. However, only a few months ago it was revealed there is insufficient demand for UTC places. Should the programme expand rapidly over the next few years without waiting for the level of demand to increase?

Promoting vocational training as an alternative to university seems advantageous for young people unsuited to the academic route. Perhaps the low demand is due to a lack of awareness of UTCs and their worth and further promotion in local communities is needed.

So far uptake at some UTCs has been poor with a couple running at 30% and 33% capacity. In addition, the only UTC to be inspected by Ofsted was told it ‘requires improvement’. If parents fail to be convinced about UTCs, the government may find it hard to justify spending taxpayers’ money on further expansion.

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