Yesterday, the Department for Education announced that young people who fail to attain good grades (at least grade C) in their English and maths GCSEs will now be required to continue studying these subjects as they enter post-16 education. From 2015, this will impact all young people up to the age of 18, as a raised ‘participation age’ means they must remain in some form of education or training.

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The announcement follows one of Alison Wolf’s recommendations from her 2011 review of vocational education, which exposed the limited value of many of the vocational qualifications currently on offer for young people. Education Secretary Michael Gove has said that English and maths “are, quite simply, the most important vocational skills a young person can have”, and the news has been broadly welcomed by educationalists including the NUT and AOC. Read more…

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