Education Choices – UTCs and Studio Schools

At 13 or 15 you can now apply to one of the alternative education providers such as a Studio school or one of the new University Technical Colleges.
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Studio Schools

Studio Schools have a new approach to learning which includes teaching through projects and real work. Studio Schools are for 14-19 year olds of all abilities. They are small schools for 300 students from year 10 to year 13 and are open from 8.30 am - 5 pm each working day. Studio Schools offer a range of qualifications including GCSEs in English, Maths and Science, as well as paid work placements linked directly to employment opportunities in the local area. For more information please visit Studio Schools Trust.

The Space Studio in Banbury opened in September 2014. The school is for 14-19 year olds who are interested in Science, Maths, Technology and Space.

Bicester Technology Studio will open in September 2016.​ The school is for 14-19 year olds and will specialise in sustainable technologies and logistics.

University Technical Colleges

University Technical Colleges also offer an alternative form of learning. They accept applications from 13 year olds who will be 14 when they start their course. Not only will you get GCSEs, you will also gain hands-on experience which will really help to equip you for the workplace

Silverstone UTC opened in 2011 and is located in the Silverstone circuit. It specialises in technical and skills based education. This offers opportunities and progression into careers in High performance Engineering and Technical Events Management.

The Buckinghamshire UTC opened in Aylesbury in 2013. Its IT and Construction curriculum is heavily influenced by local, national and international employers who also provide mentoring, support and work experience for all students.

Reading UTC opened in September 2013 which focuses on computer science and software engineering.

Swindon UTC opened in December 2014 and is for 14-19 year olds in Swindon where students will learn practical skills and have the experience to take the next step.

UTC Oxfordshire in Didcot opened in 2015 and admits up to 600 students. It offers science research, engineering and computing. It  teaches core GCSEs, BTEC qualifications and A-Levels alongside a chosen specialism.

Choices at 13

It is a really good idea to go to one of the Open Days at a studio school or UTC and ask questions so that you make the right choice at 13. If you cannot go to one of the Open Days read about what is on offer on-line and talk to someone there. Read more about GCSE choices here.

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