Success Of Post-16 Education For Islanders A Priority

school summer 1The Council is trying to increase the number of young people from Scilly who successfully complete two years of further education on the mainland.

Performance Manager, Keith Grossett told members of the Children and Young People Committee that the Authority is “increasingly aware” that it’s a challenge for island students to complete their courses.

Many don’t even make it through the first year, he said.

New legislation means that by next year, the Council has to promote effective participation in education, employment and training for islanders up to 18 years old.

Keith said for the vast majority of our children, that means studying at a mainland college. The authority will also need to monitor those who don’t participate in these activities.

Youngster will now receive a risk assessment around the time they receive their GCSE results. Keith says this will look at what grades they’ve achieved, where they’re planning to study and the accommodation arrangements they’ve put in place.

Cllr Amanda Martin was in favour of the plans. She said there had been “huge strides” made over the years in supporting students. She remembers her own time, when young people were “cast upon the shores over there” and told to get on with it, “with varying degrees of success.”

Amanda says apart from the risks “in the nasty sense” that our children face, there’s also the “shear loneliness” of the experience to deal with.

Cllr Christine Savill said supporting post-16s was a priority on the Council’s Young People Plan. “We’re not there yet,” she said, “but we’re moving towards it.”

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