A school in Newcastle, England is taking a new approach to education by offering courses with hyper-specific focuses in technology and health science.
North East Futures UTC will open later this week and hopes to give students in the Newcastle region a head start in disciplines that have definitive utility in the modern workplace.
According to Chronicle Live, NE Futures UTC will be open to kids all over the North East of England, which has lagged behind the more cosmopolitan South in careers in technology, the school will offer futures in fields like video game development and cyber security:
“Recruiting students from 14 up from across the North East, it will offer courses tailored for careers in technology (including game development and the lucrative business of digital security) and health science.”
The school will offer normal courses that you’d find in most any high school curriculum, but also give students the opportunity to follow a focus in a subject of their choosing and work alongside professionals in that industry.
Chronicle Live reports:
“Alongside ordinary GCSEs (maths, English and science, as well as the option of a language, art, geography or design technology) students can gain technical qualifications in their preferred area of study. They’ll work independently on projects and develop relationships with people working in industry.”
Head teacher of the school Dan Sydes spoke to Chronicle Live about the goals of NE Futures UTC, claiming that the school immediately positions itself as an attractive option to students in the North East:
“At most we’ll only have about 600 students, but we believe for those 600 this will be the best possible choice. If you have an interest in science or tinkering with computers, we are a great school. We will have a different feel to many schools: longer hours, business dress, great opportunities for work experience – it will be all about getting our students to the right next step.”
This is definitely an interesting new approach to instructing students in this age of technology and mixed media. But one of the biggest issues in those fields is lack of diversity. Mr. Sydes told Chronicle Live that NE Futures UTC is taking on this problem head on:
“We’re all about closing the gap, we have a full range of different backgrounds, and 45% of those signed up already are girls… Maybe where we can have the most impact is raising aspirations and challenging educational disadvantage.”
NE Futures UTC is offering a different lane for students in the North East of England. By taking on geographical and demographic issues in technologies and health sciences, the school could be crucial factor in offering careers in these fields for young students who hadn’t previously had access to them.
For more information, check out their website.