It has always been the assumption that academies will have sixth form provision as part of their mission to raise aspirations and staying on rates.
Although post-16 participation rates have improved in recent years, the UK still has one of the lowest proportions of pupils in full time education or training at age 17 among OECD countries.
Academies are proving successful in encouraging more pupils to stay on in education or training post-16. Within the local arrangements for delivering 14-19 specialised vocational diplomas, it is the norm for Academies to be post-16 providers in their own right. Where an academy proposal does not include sixth form provision, the Government would need to be assured that arrangements for post-16 provision for pupils leaving the academy are as good, in terms of accessibility and quality, as those which could be provided by the academy itself.
Many academies have universities either as sponsors or as partners, and defined progression routes to further and higher education are a key priority.