IB Schools and Colleges Association

Why is the government spending so much on T-levels when a world-class programme that combines academic and vocational study already exists, asks Paul Luxmoore

I don’t really understand T-levels. This is either because I’m a bit dumb and slow, or because, as the executive head of a predominantly secondary MAT, I’ve been led to believe that T-levels are designed for FE colleges, and are therefore not for my pupils.

I get the intention, however. T-levels are supposed to be academically tough vocational courses, because we need to improve the status of vocational study. Academically able students are channelled into A-levels, which limit their choices and their styles of learning, and are designed to provide access to higher education. Those who cannot access A-levels are put onto vocational courses, which are perceived as having a lesser status. Anyone with half a brain recognises that this is a pretty stupid national system…

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