Bristol is One of the Worst Performing Local Authorities for Post 16 Options

Bristol Worst Performing Local Authority for Post 16 Options:

Bristol is one of the worst performing local authorities in England for its performance in relation to young people continuing in education or moving into work at post 16.

Every year, the Department for Education produces a scorecard to benchmark the Post 16 results of each local authority in England. Between 2016 and 2018, Bristol was placed on the fifth quintile, the worst possible result.

Bristol statistics from June 2019 showed there were 590 out of a total 7740 young people aged 16 and 17 years who were not in education, training or employment.

A 230 of these young people were not accessing education or work and a 360 could not even be accounted for.

When it comes to vulnerable young people, Children in Care or Care Leavers are 4 times more likely to be out of education or work. The Bristol statistic is 13 out of 35 young people or 37.1 per cent.

Those with an EHCP aged 16-25 are 5 times more likely to not be accessing education or work. In Bristol, the statistic was 285 out of 663 or 43.1 per cent.

The strategy also found that there are a ‘high’ number of young people with a live EHCP whose destination is ‘unknown’.

When it comes to those in Bristol on free school meals or at special schools at the age of 15, the chances of them going on to access higher education is poor.

The results from Widening Participation in Higher Education 2018, found that Bristol has the lowest entries into higher education at age 19 for these students when compared to the other 7 core cities in England of Birmingham (36 per cent), Manchester (29 per cent), Liverpool (24 per cent), Sheffield (23 per cent), Nottingham 21 per cent, Newcastle upon Tyne (20 per cent), Leeds (20 per cent) and Bristol (15 per cent).

Hartcliffe and Withywood, Filwood and Avonmouth & Lawrence Weston were the three worst performing wards for sending young people on FSM at 15 or in special schools into higher education.

In contrast, Stoke Bishop, Westbury-on-Trym and Henleaze and Redland were the best.

There is currently a lack of A level and apprenticeship training provision across the South of Bristol and in parts of the North. This causes young people on low incomes to face long and expensive journeys to learning, creating an additional barrier.

There is a projected 17.5 per cent of growth in the numbers of young people aged 15 to 19 years in Bristol by 2026. A deficit in the number of places available for both school sixth forms and sixth form colleges has also been predicted.

The statistics are published in the Improving Bristol Post 16 Education, Skills and Career Pathways Strategy 2019 -2024 by the Bristol Learning City Partnership. The strategy aims to see all young people in Bristol taking up education, employment or training at age 16, rather than disengaging and dropping out of education too soon.

Strategy priorities include introducing free bus travel for all 16-18 year olds so they can access post 16 provision no matter where they live. Accessible information will be provided to parents about post GCSE options from year 7 onward with careers information and events forming part of school parents’ evenings.

The strategy also aims support successful outcomes for young people who may disengage with their learning, such as those with an EHCP or Care leavers. The Traineeship and Apprenticeship scheme would also be expanded to offer a range of options and targeted support for young people with the ‘greatest challenges’.

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