Doncaster is to have its own University Technical College to educate the next generation of skilled technicians, engineers, and designers, it was announced today.
The secondary school will help to provide a workforce for the future and ensure Doncaster’s economic sustainability in the advanced engineering, rail and digital design sectors.
Led by Doncaster Chamber and partners within business and education, the UTC will open in September 2020 to students aged between 13 and 19-years. They will have access to a unique learning experience enhanced by close links with local supporting employers to bring the curriculum to life through project work.
The Department for Education commented that Doncaster’s bid showed strong private sector support and clear evidence of deep rooted and committed local partnership. It has been a real
partnership effort, with a variety of schools, universities, public sector organisations and local businesses making every effort to secure Doncaster’s bid.
Chief Executive Officer for Doncaster Chamber, Dan Fell, who leads the town’s UTC steering group said: “I am absolutely delighted by the Department for Education’s decision to approve Doncaster’s bid to open a University Technical College.
“The UTC will provide exciting new opportunities for the borough’s young people to access outstanding technical education here in Doncaster. By equipping Doncaster’s fantastic young people with the skills and experience they need to thrive in industry, the UTC will play a key role in tackling the long term skills shortages that are apparent in key sectors such as: rail, construction and engineering. This will ensure that firms in these industries have access to the skilled labour they need to grow and succeed in a competitive global economy; it will also make Doncaster an increasingly attractive destination for inward investors from these sectors.
“The Chamber is a founding member of the UTC and I have been proud to lead the bid for a UTC in recent years on behalf of the local business community. We could not have got to this point without having a robust and dedicated partnership between the business community, local educationalists, Doncaster MBC and other key stakeholders. I would applaud everyone involved in this project to date for their vision, tenacity and commitment to Doncaster. We all now look forwards to working closely with DfE to open a brilliant UTC in Doncaster’s town centre in 2020.”
Ros Jones, Mayor of Doncaster commented: “It has been a long held ambition of the council, Doncaster Chamber, local businesses and the whole of Team Doncaster to bring a University Technical College to Doncaster so it is fantastic news that we now have the green light from government. We have just published a review of post 16 education across Doncaster and one of its key recommendations to improve outcomes for young people is to improve quality and choice in Doncaster’s further and higher education opportunities so our communities have clearer routes into employment which the UTC will be an integral part of.
“The UTC will become a vital pathway into further education and employment for our young people and is part of our comprehensive plans to have a diverse educational offer that provides our young people with the best opportunity to learn and thrive.
“The UTC will link our young people with local businesses so they gain the technical skills needed by industry. It will also complement the National College for High Speed Rail by providing another route for our young people to build a successful and rewarding career which supports inclusive economic growth. These are exciting times for Doncaster as we continue to build for the future.”
Dan Jarvis, Mayor of Sheffield City Region added: “This is fantastic news for our young people in Doncaster. Gaining skills in advanced engineering and digital design, and being involved in industry-led projects, will give learners the perfect opportunity to secure those high-skilled jobs that are increasingly coming to the Sheffield City Region. My congratulations and thanks go to everyone who has worked so hard to secure this new college.”
Jack Pendle, Engineering Director, Volker Rail, who was a founding partner of the Doncaster UTC project said: "Having worked with the Doncaster UTC team, we are delighted about the recent announcement confirming UTC approval. At Volker Rail we are passionate about building the next generation rail engineering workforce for Doncaster and will require talented young people with a good grounding in STEM subjects to deliver in the fast emerging digital railway. The UTC will be of great benefit; not only to local young people, but the future local economy. We believe the UTC, alongside the National College of High Speed Rail, will provide fantastic opportunities for our young people and we
are excited to be taking this project forward with other partners.
Richard Walsh, Managing Director, Pennine Stone added: “I am delighted that this scheme has been approved, Doncaster UTC will create a new offer for our young people which will develop the skills and behaviours that industry needs to continue to thrive. By securing Industry involvement in education delivery, we have an opportunity to ensure that our young people succeed in their careers and access the very best opportunities while driving local economic growth. The UTC will provide young people with an exciting education alternative which will enable them to combine traditional study alongside stimulating new industry-based and applied learning pathways.”
Professor Wyn Morgan, Vice-President for Education, The University of Sheffield said: "The University warmly welcomes and supports the decision to locate a University Technical College
in Doncaster. Focused on Advanced Engineering and Digital Design and working with local universities employers, the new UTC in Doncaster and the existing UTC in Sheffield are aimed at developing skills which will drive innovation, attract inward investment from high-tech companies
and help to create jobs.”
Doncaster’s UTC will provide an education in STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) subjects and specialise in offering Advanced Engineering, Rail and Digital Design sectors. Work will now continue to recruit the Principal, senior staff, businesses to provide hands-on learning and of course students to be able to open the doors in September 2020.
University Technical Colleges are government-funded schools that offer young people of all abilities and backgrounds a great deal more than traditional schools. They teach students technical and scientific subjects in an innovative way and prepare them to meet the challenges of employment or higher level study to create a highly qualified and skilled workforce for the 21st century. The talented students produced by this college will benefit not just the region, but also our country, as they contribute to national growth in the engineering sector. "