Career colleges to teach pupils to become carers

Thousands of pupils will be able to learn how to become carers and chefs in a new network of ‘career colleges.’

The colleges will see pupils taught practical skills for work, while they continue studying for GCSEs in maths, English and science.

Under plans for the new centres teenagers will be able to leave school two years earlier at 14 and go to one of the colleges to learn more vocational skills.

It is hoped the ‘career colleges’ will plug a skills gap in England and help to reduce the number of people who are unemployed.

“By starting at 14, youngsters have a head start in preparing for the world of work as they do in Austria, Denmark and the Netherlands, where youth unemployment is much lower,” Lord Baker of Dorking, who will publish the plans today, told The Independent.

He said it was “about time” the skills gap in the UK was filled with “our own young people” rather than people from overseas being brought in because they had the skills needed.

Lord Baker said the aim of the career colleges was to ensure every 16 to 18-year-old was in work or educational or vocational training when they left school. The latest government figures show there are more than 200,000 in this age range who are not in employment, education or training (Neet).

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