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Vocational education vindicated

That more and more students are gaining vocational qualifications ("Vocational pass rates soar", FE Focus, March 7) is a great testament to the success of vocational education in engaging young people with their learning.

If the Government's decision to raise the education participation age to 18 is to have the hoped-for effect, we must engage young people at an earlier age.

Vocational education frequently suffers from the negative prejudice that sees it as the "poor relation" of the academic path. But these results testify to its potential. Let us hope that they serve as an example to government - and the public - of the advantages that vocational learning brings to young people and to the country.

Andy Powell, Chief executive, Edge educational foundation, London W1.

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