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Diplomas aim to rebalance the curriculum with go-anywhere skills

None can doubt that trying to prepare for the future is a practice fraught with danger, not least in the field of education reform

None can doubt that trying to prepare for the future is a practice fraught with danger, not least in the field of education reform

None can doubt that trying to prepare for the future is a practice fraught with danger, not least in the field of education reform.

As Stephen Jones rightly points out (FE Focus, May 16), it is very difficult to predict the heights to which a qualification can rise, or the depths to which a reform process can descend, in the laudable attempt to provide all young people with qualifications that will set them up for life - wherever they go.

The new 14-19 diplomas aim to recognise a broad range of valuable skills that will set young people up for further education and employment. They are based on robust research which identifies the skills that are needed in the world now and, most notably, they identify the areas where employers think that further emphasis is needed.

GoSkills has been involved in the development of the engineering diploma, leads on the languages diploma, and is heavily involved in the travel and tourism diploma. Our sector employers are very enthusiastic about the potential of these qualifications to meet the aspirations of students, higher education, passenger transport industries and the wider economy.

Passenger transport is a sector with too few pre-employment qualifications of the right sort. This contributes to a disappointing level of interest in careers in a sector of growing importance economically, socially and environmentally.

We believe that the diplomas represent a necessary rebalancing of the curriculum and we will work hard to ensure their importance is recognised among our partners in schools and colleges.

Peter Huntington, Chief executive, GoSkills, Solihull.

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