Education Secretary Michael Gove met employers at Uxbridge College as the Government announced a new measure of work-related qualifications.
Mr Gove and his colleague Matthew Hancock, Skills Minister, visited the college to discuss the new Technical Baccalaureate as it was announced on April 22. The measure is designed to show students have the skills required by employers.
Mr Gove and Mr Hancock discussed the benefits of vocational training with the employers, many of whom employ apprentices and who are among around 500 who train their staff through the college.
The TechBacc will be a performance measure used in Government league tables, and will consist of one of a number of existing vocational qualifications at A-level standard, along with good standards of numeracy and literacy.
Laraine Smith OBE, Principal of Uxbridge College, said: “Uxbridge College is delighted its commitment to providing high quality vocational education was recognised with this visit from two of the most senior national figures in education and skills policy.
“Any measure which helps spread the word that vocational and technical qualifications are uniquely valuable to business and young people alike is extremely welcome.
“The meeting with our guest employers, who represented the wide range of businesses we work with from small enterprises to major corporations, gave ministers an insight into the importance of vocational education to business. The employers talked about how working with Uxbridge College not only helps them get access to young people with skills, but also helps them shape those skills in the way that works for them.
“Whether you are a large or small business it is crucial to have the right people with the right skills to support growth and optimum productivity – and working with a further education college such as Uxbridge College is the idea way to do this.”
The TechBacc is expected to be introduced for courses beginning in September 2014, and to be reported for the first time in the college and school sixth-form performance tables in January 2017.