The Independent is reporting that heads of new university technical colleges (UTCs) set up around the country have been prevented from entering hundreds of secondary schools to inform pupils about the kind of education they can offer them.
Former Education Secretary Lord (Kenneth) Baker told of one secondary school whose head said – on being asked if the local UTC could visit – “over my dead body”…
“Heads [of UTCs] are being excluded from going into schools,” he said. “One said: ‘Over my dead body will you come into my school.’ Some schools do allow us in but it is only a handful.”
Lord Baker’s revelations follow The Independent on Sunday’s disclosure last week that Education Secretary Nicky Morgan is planning new legislation compelling schools to give just as much weight to telling pupils about apprenticeships as university courses.
He is confident that the final legislation will give leaders of UTCs the right to enter their neighbouring schools. “I think it is perverse [to deny entry] because it is denying the children a choice as to what they do,” he said.
“It is a total hostility being shown by traditional education to something which is exciting and successful. We can give them the skills which are right for the workplace.”
Lord Baker, who is head of the Baker Dearing Trust and is the main motivator behind the UTC programme, said it was often the worst performing secondary schools that tried the hardest to keep the UTCs out. This, he added, was despite the fact that it was these schools’ pupils who were most likely to benefit from a high-class vocational education…
We covered the issue of schools denying access to general FE colleges last week, but this article suggests the situation is more acute with UTCs recruiting at a younger age.
Do you think it is acceptable for schools to be preventing UTC heads from coming into the schools, potentially to recruit students aged 14?
Please tell us why/why not in the comments or via Twitter…
Are you a trainee teacher, NQT, teacher, headteacher, parent or just someone who cares about education and has something to get off your chest in a Schools Improvement Guest Post? Follow this link for more details at the bottom of the page.Don’t forget you can sign up to receive our daily email bulletin (around 7am) with all the latest schools news stories. Your details will never be given to anyone else and you can unsubscribe at any stage. Just follow this link.
We now have a Facebook page - please click to like!