Frequently Asked Questions We have had a very positive response to the Energy Coast UTC from local parents/carers and students. Below are some FAQs that we have had from parent/carers that we thought might be useful for anyone considering the UTC: What is a UTC? University Technical Colleges are a new concept in education, which are state funded and free to all entrants. They are like technical schools that are very successful in other countries. Students can enrol at 14 and at 16 and have the opportunity to take a highly regarded, full time, technical and academic course of study that offers clear progression routes into higher education or further learning in work. The opening of new UTCs is co-ordinated nationally by the Baker Dearing Trust, supported and encouraged by the Department for Education. They believe in providing an opportunity for 14 to 19 year olds to have a strong technical and academic course of study. Why enrol in the Energy Coast UTC? Please take a look at our other pages about what Energy Coast UTC has to offer. Is age 14 too young to specialise? Energy Coast UTC students receive a broad education including English, mathematics and science combined with practical and technical qualifications which are recognised by employers and universities, for more information please look at the learning section on the website. Who will teach in the UTC? All UTC staff are suitably experienced and hold degrees and PGCEs or teaching degrees in the relevant subject. Vocational practical training is delievered by Gen2 and Lakes College. Is the UTC subject to Ofsted inspection and league tables? Yes, we are subject to both. The UTC like traditional educational establishments is subject to Ofsted inspections. Will free school meals be available? All students eligible for free school meals will still have that entitlement. What transport will be provided? A local coach company, Reays, will now provide UTC authorised transport starting from September 2017. This is a bespoke service for our students, and transport arrangements can be made directly with Reays on www.reays.co.uk or by calling 016973 49999 You can view the transport routes here; Route 1, Route 2, Route 3, Route 4. Will there be P.E. lessons? Yes, we have a Multi-Use Games Area on the UTC site. When we aren't using this facility, PE will be delivered from Lakes College. P.E. lessons will be compulsory for all Key Stage 4 students and also part of Enrichment. For more information, please click here What will be a typical class size at the UTC? The typical class size within the UTC is 20 for theory and practical sessions falling to 12-18 for technical sessions. Who will run the UTC? The UTC is controlled by a trust with directors of the company constituted under the Memorandum and Articles of the Academy Trust and drawn from directors from the partner organisations. Directors are also members of the Governing Body that is made up of governors representing both the Sponsors, local business associated to engineering and construction and local interests. The governors have a strategic role in the running of the school, acting as custodian of the ethos and values, establishing targets with the Principal and ensuring that the Trust is operated in a sound and business-like manner. What are the advantages of going to a UTC? It allows a student to study a subject they are really interested in, taught in state of the art facilities by teachers with real life practical experience. By 16 their technical skills are far in advance of those students in a standard comprehensive school and they have a more enthusiastic engagement with their academic studies leading to greater achievement. Are there any fees? No, the Energy Coast UTC is part of government-funded education and is funded in the same way as an Academy with control over its own finances. What is the reason to start at age 14? Age 11 is too early to choose a subject path to follow and age 16 is too late. Students who know what they want to do can often become bored at school and so underachieve by the time they are 16. There will be high standards of pastoral care and individual careers guidance. No student need have any fears about moving school at the age of 14. There will be a very strong induction programme and a big emphasis on supporting the needs of each individual. Are you able to deliver dyslexia support? All students at the Energy Coast UTC are supported to reach their potential. The UTC will nurture a culture where success in every field of endeavour is valued and celebrated. Increasing, enhancing and developing the literacy and numeracy of all students will be a high priority. Students with particular needs, including SEN and / or other disabilities will be enabled to thrive in this culture. Their needs will be identified quickly through thorough screening and induction on entry to the UTC and, in many cases, beforehand. They will benefit from rigorous identification and assessment so that their learning opportunities are well matched to their needs and aspirations. Students will have appropriate support including adaptation of teaching approaches and learning materials and the provision of specialist equipment and materials when necessary. Students' progress will be carefully monitored and tracked so that appropriate intervention can be made without delay and the learning programmes adapted where necessary to ensure that progress is accelerated and maintained. What will be a typical class size at the UTC? The typical class size within the UTC will be 24 for theory and practical sessions falling to 12-18 for vocational sessions. What sort of pastoral support is the new UTC likely to have? What will the structure be and how will the students access this? At the UTC we operate a typical year based system like any other UTC or college, led by a Head of Year whose role is to ensure that students receive all the support they need to address and remove barriers to education and to flourish as confident learners. When students join the UTC, they will be allocated to forms. These are vertically mixed groups of students from both Key Stage 4 and 5. Not only will these form the organisational core of the students welfare and development system but they will be the basis of employer led project activities that promote the skills of communication, time management, planning of self and others, teamwork and enterprise. A Personal Learning Manager will provide guidance and advice to ensure that students really benefit from all that is on offer. They are also the key point of contact for parents. In addition to this, they encourage the enterprise culture and promote social moral well-being. Tutors will play a central role in students’ personal and academic development. There will be a particular focus on ensuring that new students gain the necessary literacy and social skills and self-confidence to settle quickly. After we have submitted our son’s application, what happens next? Once we have received your application the Student Recruitment Officer, Deana Grills, will contact you to acknowledge receipt. We will then keep you up to date with events and activities via our newsletter. We will also arrange for a one to one meeting with the Principal so that you have an opportunity to discuss any queries or issues you may have and ensure you and your child are fully aware of the requirements of the UTC. If my child isn’t successful in the first instance, will there be a waiting list? Where, in any year, the UTC receives more applications for places than there are places available, a waiting list will operate until the end of December; i.e. the Christmas break. The waiting list will be maintained by the UTC and it will be open to any parent/carer to ask for their applicant’s name to be placed on the waiting list following an unsuccessful application. Where places become vacant they will be allocated to applicants on the waiting list in accordance with the UTC’s Admissions Policy criteria.