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ERIC Number: ED502590
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Pages: 143
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-1-8447-8389-8
Evaluation of Increased Flexibility for 14 to 16 Year Olds Programme: The Second Year. RR609
Golden, Sarah; O'Donnell, Lisa; Rudd, Peter
National Foundation for Educational Research
The Increased Flexibility for 14-16 year olds Programme (IFP) was introduced in 2002 by the Department for Education and Skills (DfES) in order to "create enhanced vocational and work-related learning opportunities for 14-16 year olds who can benefit most." Partnerships between a Lead Partner, usually a college of Further Education, partner schools and sometimes other providers such as training providers and employers, were formed in 2002 to achieve this aim. A first cohort of Year 10 students embarked on two-year vocational courses in the autumn term of 2002. The IFP was subsequently expanded to a second cohort of Year 10 students in autumn 2003 and a third in 2004. For each cohort, about 300 partnerships supported the learning of around 40,000 young people in Years 10 and 11. This summary presents the main findings from the follow-up surveys of a sample of Year 11 students, schools and colleges and training providers which were undertaken in spring 2004. A sample of around 5,600 students in Year 10, and their associated schools and colleges and training providers, responded to a baseline survey in the spring term of 2003. These students and organisations were sent follow-up questionnaires in the spring term of 2004 when the students were in Year 11. The data presented in this summary is based on responses from: (1) 2,616 students who replied in both 2003 and 2004; (2) 248 schools, 115 of whom replied in 2003 and 2004; and (3) 78 colleges and training providers, 62 of whom replied in both years. Reported findings include: (1) Students who participated in IFP had benefited from accessing a broader curriculum and, on the whole, were on target to achieve their qualifications; (2) There was evidence that the students surveyed had developed their social skills, including in relation to working with adults, their confidence in their employability skills, including inter-personal and communication skills, and their abilities such as their problem-solving skills; (3) Fifty-six per cent of the students said that their IFP course had helped them to decide what they would like to do in the future; (4) Thirty-three per cent of colleges and training providers, and 30 per cent of schools, said that they worked with employers to support the delivery of IFP; and (5) Nearly all of the schools and colleges and training providers surveyed were involved in the second cohort of IFP. The authors conclude that overall, involvement in IFP has been successful for many students in developing their social skills, their confidence in their employability skills, and in their own abilities, such as working on their own and solving problems, and on their attitudes towards school and learning; that participating in IFP had led to more effective partnership working between schools and colleges and training providers, and the partnerships have matured during the second year of the programme; and that policy makers should consider that cost and time involved in delivery of IFP frequently exceed the expectations of participating organizations. Three appendixes are included: (1) Representativeness of Responding Students and Schools; (2) Factor Analysis of Student Attitudes; and (3) Students' Progression by Qualification Type. (Contains 27 footnotes and 67 tables.)
National Foundation for Educational Research. The Mere, Upton Park, Slough, Berkshire, SL1 2DQ, UK. Tel: +44-1753-574123; Fax: +44-1753-637280; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Department for Education and Skills
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)