Education Policy Institute publishes proposals for a school “Catch Up Plan” to prevent disadvantaged pupils falling further behind during the pandemic
@EduPolicyInst has today (6 May) published a series of policy recommendations for government, ‘Preventing the disadvantage gap from increasing during and after the Covid-19 pandemic' is designed to prevent a significant widening of the disadvantage gap between poor children and the rest of the pupil population.
How technical education in England compares with leading nations: Government must go further with technical education reforms, or risk falling further behind
The funding gap between technical and academic education in the UK as a whole is considerable, with technical education routes receiving 23% less funding than academic routes.
In sharp contrast to the UK context, other nations fund technical education at a higher rate than academic, including Austria (26%) and the Netherlands and Germany (37%).
Recent government funding increases of £400m for 16-19 education only reverse a quarter of cuts to the sector since 2010/11.
The lack of funding for technical education in England is also reflected in less generous student support: government bursary funding to students decreased by 71% per student between 2010/11 and 2018/19.
Technical courses are typically cheaper to run than those offered in leading countries – fewer more expensive courses, such as engineering, are available to students in England.
Technical education courses in England are of short duration, and the curriculum is one of the narrowest in the developed world: unlike England, other countries continue with maths, languages and other subjects at this level. This narrow approach may be depriving students of valuable skills.
The government’s technical education reforms, including the new T levels, are a positive development, but the reforms do not go far enough: course length, quality and employer links must be addressed if England is to match provision in high performing nations.
A new report from the Education Policy Institute (EPI) "An international comparison of technical education funding systems - What can England learn from successful countries?" undertakes a comprehensive comparison of technical education in England and the UK with other developed countries.
Results have yet to match the aspirations
The aspiration for policy makers over the last couple of decades has been to improve early years and school education to the extent that young people enter the later phases of education, post 16, equipped for success.
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