Time to get technical?

23rd October 2009 at 01:00

At City of Bath College, 14- and 15-year-old students are a vital part of our community, and we are able to offer full-time vocational programmes to these young people, most of whom go on to further programmes here and rediscover their interest in learning.

I am, therefore, interested in the idea of what the Conservatives call "technical schools" for 14-19s. I can see that many youngsters now in the schools system would benefit from attending FE colleges full-time and am sure many in the sector will see this as an opportunity, rather than a threat.

But let us not be too flattered by the recognition this proposal gives the sector. If the idea is to become reality, it will require huge investment. We need a debate to see if this is what we want for our sector.

Let us welcome the development with caution. Our message to politicians must be clear: we are interested, but on our terms.

Matt Atkinson, Principal and chief executive, City of Bath College.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar, Buyagift.com, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today