Commenting on UCAS research showing that 42% of UK 18-year-olds are currently holding an offer to commence a full-time undergraduate degree in autumn 2021, leaving 58% not doing so, Anne Murdoch, Senior Adviser, College Leadership, at the Association of School and College Leaders, said:
“It is great to learn in this UCAS research that so many young people are progressing into higher education this year after the disruption caused by the pandemic and also that so many others are thinking very positively about apprenticeships.
“However, the striking finding is that only 11% of students say they have received enough careers information, advice and guidance, and 9% say they did not receive any at all. Most worryingly, 18% feel they do not have many options for next year.
“This is a damning indictment of the government’s decision to pull the plug on the national advisory service, handing the responsibility to schools and colleges without any funding.
“Despite attempts to improve the situation since, this survey highlights the urgent need for more investment in expert independent careers advice and guidance that schools and colleges can utilise and provide to young people.
“The government simply has to address this as part of the Skills and Post-16 Bill. Our young people deserve as much assistance and advice as possible at a critical point in their education to help them make the very best choices for their futures.”