Young male and female studying

The rise of the 16-19 year olds

The education sector is generally pretty robust at adapting to different economic, environmental and demographical changes that come it’s way – managing through a pandemic for the last 18 months to say the least! Ultimately, it must find a way to continue with whatever is being thrown at it, for the sake of children, young people and their education. 

One change that the sector is seeing, is the rise in 16-19 year olds. In a report from the BBC, The Institute of Fiscal Studies found that there is a ‘historical high of 85% of 16 and 17 year olds in full-time education’ and there are a couple of reasons how this has come to be: 

GCSE grades 

In 2020 and 2021, GCSE attainment increased – schools and teachers are obviously doing right by their students and supporting all they can to help them achieve their best. These great results mean that more students now have the option of continuing into further education. 

Reduced options 

Covid is of course another factor here. With reduced opportunities outside education to go on to and an uncertain job market, some of the young people who may have left education for something else, are choosing to stay put with their studies. 

For the next couple of years, not only are sixth forms and colleges likely to have their biggest cohorts yet, they will have the added challenge of supporting the recovery after covid to those who need it. Although GCSEs were passed, the disruption of learning from home, not socialising with peers and teachers, and not taking exams, will possibly take its toll on some students. To be A-level ready, university-ready and real life-ready, is what sixth forms and colleges need to be preparing their students for as best they can. 

Having the right staff in your school will be crucial to supporting these young people continue with their studies and succeeding. It will be important to have secondary and further education staff who can support the transition from school to sixth form or college, especially after these covid years, and extra tuition available to anyone that might need to catch-up on missed learning. If you’re reviewing what your staffing team looks like and need help recruiting skilled teachers, tutors, support or leadership staff, give us a call to help. We’ve been education recruitment specialists since 2005, so you can rely on us and our experience to support you. 

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Let us help you find quality staff who meet your school and pupils’ needs. Call us today on +44(0)20 7065 7500.