The new Advanced British Standard will put technical and academic education on an equal footing. A new qualification for 16-19 year olds will bring together the best of A Levels and T Levels into a single new qualification.
Under the new plans announced by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak today (04 October 2023), every student will, for the first time, be required to study some form of maths and English to age 18. Students will also spend more time in the classroom, increasing taught hours to a minimum of 1,475 hours over two years.
One of the most interesting aspects of the proposed changes is that students could combine both academic and vocational elements, with typically three major and two minor aspects. Newbury College has already been working with its Academy partners, Procision Football Academy and Kingsclere Performing Arts, to offer similar blended programmes combining BTEC and A Level qualifications for sports and performing arts students.
Newbury College is the number one choice for technical, career-focused education in West Berkshire and was the first local provider to offer the new T Levels qualifications in 2022. The new baccalaureate-style qualification would bring together the best of A Levels and vocational T Levels into a single new qualification. The change will be introduced in close consultation with parents, pupils and teachers, with pupils starting primary school this term expected to be the first cohort to take the new qualification around 2033-34.
Once fully rolled out, the Advanced British Standard will replace A Levels and T Levels but retain their rigorous content and quality. Current post-16 students will continue to have the option of A Levels and the new T Levels , which are equivalent to three A Levels, or similar vocational qualifications.