Public support for area’s new £10m college
Last updated at 12:13, Thursday, 21 March 2013
WEST Cumbria’s new £10 million technical college has been given the thumbs up in a public consultation.
The Britain’s Energy Coast Universal Technical College (UTC) is one of 15 to win government approval and is due to open its doors to 500 students at Lillyhall next year but Britain’s Energy Board Campus was keen to gauge public opinion on its aims and purpose.
Consultation responses are said to show high levels of support for the UTC plans and for Britain’s Energy Coast Campus to enter into a funding agreement with the Secretary of State.
Rob Rimmer, campus programme director, said: “We are really pleased with the feedback. Most people appear to understand and appreciate the need for an educational facility which has both a technical focus and is based on developing skills in demand by our major employers.
“The results suggest that over half of young people and half of parents think the UTC might offer the sort of education they want for themselves or their children. This level of interest gives us confidence as we look forward to recruiting students for 2014. We believe the UTC can provide pupils with natural interest and skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics subjects to gain their traditional qualifications as well as technical ones which would equip them well for a career in engineering and energy which they may choose locally.”
Key consultation findings:
90 per cent of people support the development of such a school in West Cumbria;
56 per cent of parents said their child would be interested in attending a UTC for 14-19 year olds specialising in engineering and construction.
There was overwhelming support (94 per cent) for the UTC’s focus “to be on students moving to an apprenticeship, to college or university or in to employment”.
Issues were raised, however, about the numbers of students in West Cumbria and how the UTC might impact on these for individual schools.
Parents were also keen to know how travel costs will be met by young people (Britain’s Energy Coast Campus is developing travel plans).
Some people noted the desire to develop skills across the energy sector not just those concerned with Sellafield operations.
West Cumbria’s winning UTC bid has the support of the University of Cumbria, the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, Lakes College and Gen II Training, along with MPs Jamie Reed and Tony Cunningham.
First published at 12:10, Thursday, 21 March 2013
Published by http://www.whitehavennews.co.uk
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I was interested in the comment: There was overwhelming support (94 per cent) for the UTCâs focus âto be on students moving to an apprenticeship, to college or university or in to employmentâ. This is the focus of every secondary school in West Cumbria already - to at least fulfil the potential of each young person for their future career. The report doesn't say how many people gave responses to the consultation. That would be interesting information!
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