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T Levels Information for Parents

Deciding what to do after GCSEs is a big deal for many young people. They may no longer have the option to go straight into a job, but they still face important decisions about what, where and how to continue their studies.

School or college? Academic or vocational? Full-time study or work placement?

Enjoy more choice than ever before thanks to T Levels – the Next Level Qualification.

Alongside the existing options of A Levels, BTECs, NVQs and Apprenticeships, there will now be T Levels offered at City College Plymouth.

T Levels have been designed by employers, and City College Plymouth will continue to work with businesses and organisation in Plymouth and beyond to help us become the College of the future, ensuring your children have the skills they need to succeed in their chosen careers.

What are T Levels?

T Levels are a brand new qualification designed to give young people a head start towards the future they want. They follow GCSEs and are equivalent to three A Levels.

The two-year T Level qualification brings classroom and work placement together on a course designed with employers and businesses.

Students will spend 80% of their time in the classroom and 20% on a 45-day placement to give them the skills and knowledge employers are looking for.

The T Level will help students to step straight into their chosen career, an Apprenticeship or a degree.

T Levels are based on the world’s best technical education systems and are part of government reforms to help address the skills gap and
provide a clear range of options after GCSE. The courses were developed with leading employers to ensure that young people gain the knowledge and skills that businesses need.

Who are T Levels for?

T Levels will suit those school-leavers who know the industry or area of work they want to pursue for a career, and like the idea of a predominantly classroom-based course but with a strong practical emphasis and time in the workplace.

They differ from Apprenticeships, which are predominantly work-based and focused on a particular occupation; and A levels, which are academic and entirely classroom-based.

School-leavers no longer have to choose between university or employment at such an early age, with both options open to those who successfully complete a T Level.

What’s the difference between a T Level and an Apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships suit those students who feel ready for the workplace at 16 years, want to earn while learning, and have already chosen a specific occupation. They spend about 80% of their time with an employer, learning on the job, and 20% in the classroom.

This is the reverse of the T Level, which will involve 80% classroom work and 20% work placement. Students will gain a much broader idea of what it’s like to work in a certain sector, with the opportunity to specialise later.

As apprentices are employees, they receive a wage and paid holiday; however, there might not be an Apprenticeship in your child’s area of interest. And, like any job, they will go through an interview process.

T Level students will not be paid for their time industry, but these work placements will provide excellent opportunities to both develop workplace skills whilst meeting potential employers – should they choose the employment route after finishing their T Level.

T Levels and the City

T Levels offer a new way to support the city’s valuable employers by providing them with talented, work-ready youngsters who have the potential to become the next generation of industry leaders.

T Levels will raise the profile of technical education and shine a light on the highly valued skills needed in various industries that offer well-paid, lifelong careers. These industries include science, engineering, manufacturing and digital technologies.

These qualifications will go some way to address the growing skills gap and support the growth of these industries, in turn creating more well-paid and high-level jobs for Plymouth and the wider region.


How can I find out more?

Come along to one of our open events and chat to the lecturers, tour the facilities and find out why a T Level qualification may be the right choice for your teenager.