New research released today by the Baker Dearing Educational Trust shows that for two thirds (66%) of parents their biggest fear is that their child will not find a job when they leave education. Nearly half (48.1%) of parents said they felt stressed about their child’s education and 80% of parents believed the education system needed to change to reflect 21st century working Britain.
Baker Dearing Educational Trust, the charity that promotes University Technical Colleges (UTCs), surveyed over 1000 parents with teenagers at mainstream schools and, in a separate survey, 450 parents whose children attend UTCs.
The research reveals that parents who have children studying at UTCs feel more positive about their children’s prospects. Three quarters (70%) said the UTC has made their child more confident in getting a job.
85% of parents believed the UTC was preparing their child for the world of work. This figure dropped to just 68% when the same question was asked of parents with children at mainstream schools. Added to this, three quarters (75.86%) of UTC parents believed their child knew what industry they want to work in compared with just half (53.8%) of parents with children in mainstream schools.
UTC@MediaCityUK Principal Anne Casey said: “Our students experience an outstanding academic syllabus and work with some of the biggest names in one of our fastest moving industries. Alongside a brand new building with state-of-the-art technology we have a very strong group of employer partners including Cisco, Flix, UKFAST, Unity, dock10, Oracle, Deluxe, Panasonic and Adobe. We are also working with Apple, Google, Autodesk and the BBC, giving our students the knowledge, qualifications and experience that will make them confident and successful in their careers.”
The research showed that parents recognised the need for a more balanced education approach with three quarters (74.9%) saying their children should have the option of a combined technical and academic education at 14.
Nearly two thirds (64%) of mainstream school parents said they wanted a greater variety of choice in the type of school for their child and 69% said they wanted the option to select a technical education if it reflected their child’s talents.
But parents are confused about the options available to children. Although more than half (55.30%) of parents with children in mainstream schools felt well informed about academies, only 2 in 5 parents (41%) felt informed about University Technical Colleges. However, when UTCs were explained to them 86% of parents said they might consider a UTC for their child if there was one available in their area.
Lord Baker, Chairman of Baker Dearing Educational Trust, the charity behind UTCs, said:
“These findings highlight the importance parents place on their children’s education and whether it gives them the qualifications and experience they need to secure a job. Although it’s early days, UTCs are playing an important role to ensure children get the education they need for the 21st century workplace. This is valued a great deal by parents and I’m delighted that so many would consider a UTC education for their children.”
Dr Kathy Weston, Director of Keystone Aspire and researcher in the area of parental engagement, said:
“The effect of parental support over a child’s school life is greatly underestimated. Parents are attuned to their children’s needs, understand their strengths, talents and interests and want the best for them. Setting aside time to talk about career aspirations and education options in a relaxed environment is hugely beneficial.
Peter Glover, Senior Manager at the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES), said:
“The youth unemployment rate is still much higher than the adult rate, and unemployment whilst young can seriously harm a young person’s future career.
“There are many jobs that offer positive career prospects for young people. Our Careers of the Future report highlighted opportunities in science, engineering and information technology, as well as in health and care, the education sector and construction, to name just a few examples. Young people need to consider how the available opportunities marry up with their own interests and abilities.”
UTC@MediaCityUK Open Day
If you’re interested in finding out more about UTC@MediaCityUK’s offer for 14-19 year olds who have a passion for digital media, please attend our open day on 12th November 2015. Click here to book.