The Sainsbury report on technical education, published today, recommends that students choose after their GCSEs whether to take academic or technical qualifications.

Responding to the report Sir Peter Lampl, Chairman of the Sutton Trust, said:

Sir Peter Lampl, Chairman of the Sutton Trust and of the Education Endowment Foundation, said today:

“We welcome the Sainsbury report on technical education, which should enable young people to have improved apprenticeship and college options. It is particularly welcome that the panel wants to see a more coherent framework for technical qualifications, developed with employers.

“Good careers advice is essential and we need more advanced and higher level apprenticeship courses for young people. It is not good enough that only a third of young people are on apprenticeships leading to an A-level qualifications and above and that only a quarter of the new higher apprenticeships have been taken by young people.

“Strong technical and vocational options are vital in providing opportunities for young people. It is to be hoped that the implementation of today’s report will allow young people to take advantage of these opportunities.”

Sir Kevan Collins, Chief Executive of the Education Endowment, added:

“The Sainsbury review is absolutely right to emphasise the importance of achieving a good level in maths and English before beginning technical education, as is already the case for apprentices.

“But hundreds of thousands of young people each year are leaving formal education without these skills, seriously affecting their chances of success later in life. The Education Endowment Foundation is determined to support the post-16 sector to ensure these students can fulfill their potential.

“We are working in partnership with JP Morgan to invest £5m investigating ways to improve maths and English GCSE results for those who leave school at age 16 without a C in these subjects.”


  1. The EEF has this week announced its expansion to post-16 education and has committed £5m to find the best ways to improve outcomes for the hundreds of thousands of young people who leave formal education each year without having achieved a C in English or maths at GCSE. More on this here.

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