University technical college
A university technical college (UTC) is a type of secondary school in England that is led by a sponsor university. The university supports the curriculum development of the UTC, provides professional development opportunities for teachers, and guides suitably qualified students to foundation and full degrees. The sponsor university appoints the majority of the UTC's governors and key members of staff.
UTCs are a type of free school, and they were introduced as part of the Academies Programme. They are funded by the taxpayer, non-selective, free to attend and not controlled by a local authority. While this is also true of most academies and free schools, UTCs are collectively distinctive in a number of ways. UTCs all have a university as a lead sponsor. Further education colleges, charitable organisations and the private sector may co-sponsor a UTC, however they must also be led by a university. Like studio schools, University Technical Colleges are specifically designed to enroll students aged 14–19, whereas free schools and academies can choose the age range of their pupils. Existing schools cannot convert to become a UTC - all UTCs have to be newly founded schools with no direct transfer intake of pupils.
However, the most distinctive element of UTCs is that they have to offer technically oriented courses of study, combining National Curriculum requirements with technical and vocational elements. UTCs must specialise in subjects that require technical and modern equipment, but they also all teach business skills and the use of ICT. UTCs are also supposed to offer clear routes into higher education or further learning in work.
The university technical college programme as a whole is sponsored by the Baker Dearing Trust, an educational trust set up by Lord Baker. Baker Dearing's promotion of UTCs is supported by the City and Guilds of London Institute, Edge Foundation, the Gatsby Charitable Foundation and Pearson PLC. There are currently[when?] 17 UTCs operating, and more have been approved by the Department for Education and are due to open over the next two years. Many large companies have pledged to co-sponsor UTCs including Arup, British Airways, Ford Motor Company, Jaguar Land Rover and Sony
The establishment of university technical colleges has been criticised by some teaching unions, who claim they will cause further fragmentation of local provision of education for 16- to 19-year-olds. Others have argued that because they offer similar programmes of study, UTCs will divert funds away from further education colleges.
The age intake range of UTCs have also been criticised, with unions arguing that 14 is too early an age for most children to receive such a specialised education. It has also been suggested that the technical and vocational aspects of UTCs will create a two-tier education system, with UTCs being less well regarded than more academically orientated schools.
Several of the UTCs have closed or converted to other school types due to low pupil numbers.
List of UTCs
- Aston University Engineering Academy (opened in 2012)
- Berkeley Green UTC (to open in September 2017)
- Black Country UTC (opened in 2011 - closed in 2015)
- Bolton UTC (opened in 2015)
- Bristol Technology and Engineering Academy (opened in 2013)
- Buckinghamshire University Technical College (opened in 2013)
- Burton and South Derbyshire UTC (project on hold September 2016)
- Crewe Engineering and Design UTC (opened in 2016)
- Daventry University Technical College (opened in 2013)
- Derby Manufacturing UTC (opened in 2015)
- Elstree University Technical College (opened in 2013)
- Elutec (opened in 2014)
- Energy Coast UTC (opened in 2014)
- Global Academy (opened in 2016)
- Greater Manchester University Technical College (The GM) (opened in 2014 - closed in 2017)
- Greater Peterborough UTC (opened in 2016)
- Guildford UTC (opening in 2018)
- Hackney University Technical College (opened in 2012 - closed in 2015)
- Health Futures UTC, Sandwell (opened in 2015)
- Heathrow Aviation Engineering UTC (opened in 2014)
- Humber UTC, Scunthorpe (opened in 2015)
- JCB Academy (opened in 2010)
- Leigh UTC (opened in 2014)
- Lincoln UTC (opened in 2014)
- Liverpool Life Sciences UTC (opened in 2013)
- London Design and Engineering UTC (opened in 2016)
- Medway UTC, Gillingham (opened in 2015)
- Royal Greenwich UTC (opened in 2013) – converted to 11-19 Free school in 2016
- Scarborough University Technical College (opened in 2016)
- Silverstone University Technical College (opened in 2013)
- Sir Charles Kao UTC (opened in 2014)
- Sir Simon Milton UTC (opening in 2017)
- South Bank Engineering UTC (opened in 2016)
- South Devon UTC (opened in 2015)
- South Wiltshire UTC (opened in 2015)
- The Watford UTC (opened in 2014)
- Tottenham University Technical College (opened in 2014)
- University Technical College Norfolk (opened in 2014)
- University Technical College Wigan (opened in 2013)
- University Technical College Leeds (aopened in 2016)
- UTC Cambridge (opened in 2014)
- UTC Central Bedfordshire (opened in 2012)
- UTC Lancashire, Burnley (opened in 2013)
- UTC Oxfordshire (opened in 2015)
- UTC Plymouth (opened in 2013)
- UTC Portsmouth (opening in 2017)
- UTC Reading (opened in 2013)
- UTC Sheffield (opened in 2013)
- UTC Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park (opened in 2016)
- UTC South Durham (opened in 2016)
- UTC Swindon (opened in 2014)
- UTC Warrington (opened in 2016)
- UTC@Harbourside (opened in 2015)
- UTC@MediaCityUK (opened in 2015)
- West Midlands Construction UTC (opened in 2015)
- WMG Academy for Young Engineers, Coventry (opened in 2014)
- WMG Academy for Young Engineers, Solihull (opened in 2016)
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