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Author: Emma Dukes – Glenigan education expert (@ED_Glenigan)
When Lord Baker and Lord Dearing first developed the idea of the Baker Dearing Educational trust, they wanted to see a hundred UTCs open by 2015.  Already 30 UTCs have been launched around the country, with over 20 more opening by 2016. 

The colleges for 14 to 19-year-olds, teach engineering, product design, health sciences, construction, environmental services and food technology – allowing for more of a vocational based learning approach.

He was reviving the long-forgotten technical schools, which were enshrined, alongside grammar schools in the 1944 Education Act, but which never got off the ground.  The idea first got approval from Labour’s Lord Adonis, then the schools minister.
They provide young people with the skills they need to innovate and invent.  And meeting the skills needs of the future and backed by more than 500 employers, they are taking off much faster than city technology colleges.
They are traditionally smaller than secondary schools, with typically 600 students, non-selective and with no fee.  They are sub regional and have a catchment area that may extend across a number of local authorities.
Employers are fundamental to UTCs. They play a central role in UTCs right from the very beginning to identify business needs and the skills shortages in the local region. This shapes the technical specialists of the UTC and ensures it meets the needs of local employers.  Getting involved also offers employers the opportunity to ensure the next generation has the expertise, employability skills and knowledge needed to meet the future needs of business.
Silverstone UTC, one of the first UTCs to open nationwide, in September 2013, is a brand new centre of excellence for young people wanting to break into the specialist fields of High Performance Engineering and Business & Technical Events Management.  It is based in the very heart of British Motorsport, at the Silverstone racing grounds, in the stunning new multi-million pound facility. (Glenigan project ID 12172266).
On Wednesday 20th May Lord Baker and RAF Group Captain officially opened Heathrow Aviation Engineering UTC (Glenigan project ID 13184824) with its state-of-the-art engineering workshop.  
The idea of this UTC is to give the students experience and skills that are applicable to work related projects with aviation related employer partners and having a great head start in becoming the engineers of the future.
Lord Baker Chairman of the Baker Dearing Educational Trust states ‘Amongst the first UTCs no student has joined the ranks of the unemployed. Every student continued in education, or went into employment or training. There were no “NEETs” and this is our aim for all UTCs’.

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