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New Schools

Volume 537: debated on Wednesday 14 December 2011

I am committed to responding to calls from employers for an education system that develops the future work force with the skills they need. Business leaders say that equipping young people with employability skills—such as punctuality, good communication, reliability and teamworking—should be a top education priority for the Government.

Studio schools offer academic and vocational qualifications, but teach them in a practical and project-based way. Study is combined with paid work placements with local and national employers that are involved in the school.

I am pleased to confirm today that 12 new studio schools have been approved with a view to opening in September 2012:

Bradford International Food and Travel Studio School, Bradford

Da Vinci Studio School of Science and Engineering, Hertfordshire

Discovery Studio School, Stoke-on-Trent

Fulham Enterprise Studio School, Hammersmith and Fulham

Hull Studio School, Hull

Hinckley Studio School, Leicestershire

Hyndburn Studio School, Lancashire

Bournemouth Learning and Achievement Foundation Studio School, Bournemouth

Ockendon Studio School ,Thurrock

Parkside Studio School, Hillingdon

Tendring Studio School, Essex

The Studio, Liverpool

These schools respond directly to the demand of parents, communities and business.

I have approved the very strongest applications today. I fully expect some of the groups that are disappointed today to submit even stronger applications in the future and I encourage them to do so. Indeed, the application process to set up new free schools, university technical colleges and studio schools in 2013 and beyond has already been announced. I want particularly to urge groups to submit applications to set up new schools in areas of deprivation and basic need and where skills shortages are particularly evident.