Compulsory education ends at age 16 in the UK, but that does not have to mean an end to learning. There are a variety of post-16 education choices available in the UK. What route should you pursue after Year 11?
GCSE Exam Re-takes
If you did not do as well as you had hoped in your GCSEs, you should consider looking into GCSE exam re-takes, either at your upper/high school or at your nearest further education (FE) college. Some pupils re-take one or two subjects while simultaneously pursuing further education or training. Speak with your teachers and an adviser for guidance.
Post-16 Education Options: A levels
Post-16 education opens up new and exciting options for those who wish to pursue their education at school, a further education college or a sixth form college. So if you are looking into ways to further your qualifications, skills or work experience, you will have a lot of choices before you. If one of your long-term goals is to go to university, a traditional route to university is to stay on in school for an extra two years and pursue A level courses of your choice, or sit your A levels at a sixth form college.
Post-16 Education Options: Diplomas, NVQs, Apprenticeships and More
A levels are not the only option for 16-year-olds. Vocational pathways such as diplomas, entry level certificate courses, work-based NVQs, apprenticeships and much more are also available for school leavers. A growing number of schools and FE colleges are offering relevant Diploma courses for 14 to 19 year-olds and the range continues to expand. Find your local 14-19 prospectus by clicking here and then keying in your postcode to find courses closest to you.
There are many post-16 education options available for pupils who decide to stay on at school, join a sixth form or FE college, or for those who wish to pursue a national diploma, NVQ, apprenticeship or other courses. Before you reach a decision, start thinking about your options while you are still in Year 11. Make good use of open day events, school trips to colleges, and school advisers who are on hand to help guide you in making the best possible decision.
Choices at 16: What’s right for you