Post-secondary vocational courses aren't meeting demand

Vocational post-secondary courses are not meeting potential demand, says report reviewing vocational education training and England. (Release)

The report, published by the international Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), says that vocational provision in England at post-secondary level is low in comparison with many other countries. Moreover, employer engagement in the development of qualifications is muddled by the current system used to award organisations for qualifications.

Remedies recommended by the think tank are to encourage the expansion of programmes in line with the labour market and needs of students, and to start a franchise system for vocational qualifications that would see awarding bodies bid for the right and obligation to provide that qualification for the franchise period, with some local freedom for training providers when it comes to agreeing curriculum with employers.

The balance between theoretical and practical learning needs to be addressed, the OECD says, with reform of FE college teacher qualifications. And, workplace training needs to be made mandatory in post-secondary training, with local partnerships between employers and FE colleges.