Don't scrap BTEC

Earlier this month, the Department for Education confirmed plans to introduce a twin-track system of A levels and T levels (a new suite of technical qualifications), where most young people pursue one of these qualifications at the age of 16. As a result, funding for most BTEC and other Applied General Qualifications will be removed.

The Department set out its plans following a review of post-16 qualifications at Level 3, despite 86% of respondents disagreeing with the proposals.

In their letter to the Education Secretary, the twelve organisations in the #ProtectStudentChoice campaign say the review ignored the widespread concerns expressed about scrapping BTEC and other Applied General Qualifications and that “Many young people will be adversely affected by this proposal, but disadvantaged students have the most to lose, a conclusion that your Department’s own equalities impact assessment supports”.

We have said that furthering this proposal for a binary offer for students pathways at level 3 in the future is ill conceived and dangerous. Applied General Qualifications like BTECs or Cam Techs are tried and tested qualifications which provide a pathway, for disadvantaged students into employment or higher education. The T level qualifications are new and untested and should not be one of only two options available for students, there must be a third way. 

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