Post-16 Qualifications Update

Department for Education written statement – made on 29 March 2023.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Robert Halfon Robert Halfon Minister of State (Education)

Today, as part of phase 2 of the Post-16 Qualifications Review of English qualifications, we have published an update to the final list of qualifications that overlap with wave 1 and 2 T Levels, to include qualifications that overlap with Health and Science T Levels. These qualifications were included in the provisional list published in May 2022 but confirmation was not included in the final list published in October 2022, due to the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education’s review of the outline content of the Health and Science T Levels. This review has now concluded. Today’s update adds 28 qualifications to the list and as previously stated these will have 16-19 funding removed from 1 August 2024.

The removal of funding from these qualifications follows rigorous assessment by independent assessors and an opportunity for awarding organisations to appeal their decisions. The awarding organisations who will have funding removed from these 28 qualifications have been notified, as have the Federation of Awarding Bodies and Joint Council for Qualifications. My department will also engage with Further Education providers on this matter.

T Levels are rigorous qualifications that provide a great progression route into a range of occupations in the Health and Science sector. They are based on the same standards as apprenticeships and have their content set by employers. Students that take a Health and Science T Level are well placed to progress into careers in the sector, including as health professionals, technicians and researchers.

We have backed providers with significant additional revenue and capital funding so they are well prepared and have the resources to deliver T Levels to a high standard. We have made around £400m available to improve buildings and buy state of the art equipment. We recently announced a short term 10% uplift in T Level revenue funding to help providers as they transition from study programmes and scale up and a new £12m Employer Support Fund to help providers deliver quality industry placements. This comes alongside a range of practical support measures we have put in place to support providers to implement T Levels, including investing over £31m in the T Level Professional Development programme (TLPD) to provide free training and support to FE providers, teachers and leaders to successfully plan and deliver T Levels.

The changes to post-16 qualifications at level 3 and below are designed to ensure that our qualifications system provides a ladder of opportunity for young people from all backgrounds. T Levels are a key part of that ladder of opportunity, helping young people climb rung by rung toward a fulfilling career. The T Level Transition Programme provides a high-quality pathway onto T Levels.

In addition to T Levels, students will also benefit from a range of choice in order to access careers in the health and social care and science sectors. This will include high quality reformed qualifications at level 2 designed to support progression to apprenticeships, further study, and employment. At level 3, students will also be able to choose to study a health and social care-related qualification as part of a mixed study programme.

I am pleased that we have taken this next step in ensuring our post-16 qualifications system provides young people with the skills employers need and which are fit for the future.