Education Policy and Research Service Weekly Email 20 October 2021

As those of you in schools embark on that final week of the half-term marathon, here are some weekly updates from the school of education.

First, some news to pass on to your careers advisors. As part of the government’s plans to reskill adults and develop a more modular training system, it has announced 65 short and modular courses to be delivered through Institutes of Technology as part of a new pilot. The STEM courses will be free to learners and are funded through the National Skills Fund.

New statistics this week on participation in higher education. Some encouraging news amongst the data. The progression rate for Free School Meal pupils by age 19 has increased to 26.6% in 2019-20, the highest recorded level. This rate is particularly high in Inner London, where almost half of pupils progressed to higher education by age 19. However, rates remain much lower in other parts of the country – under a fifth of FSM eligible pupils in East Midlands, East of England, South East and South West progressed to HE in 2019-20. White pupils are the least likely to progress to HE by age 19 at 38.7%, compared to 47.6% for Mixed, 59.9% for Black, 64.3% for Asian and 80.9% for Chinese pupils. Progression rates have increased for all five broad ethnic groups in 2019/20.

ITT providers will doubt have seen the most recent information about subject knowledge enhancement courses – free government courses to strengthen trainees’ subject knowledge before they embark on their ITT courses. There is an updated guidance document which confirms course funding of up to £200 per week per participant and bursary funding of £175 per week per participant. There is also an updated SKE directory of course providers.

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