A COLLEGE is set to bring back A-levels four years after it axed them.
Pupils in Fareham have been unable to study A-levels in the borough since Fareham College dropped its full-time courses due to a lack of interest.
The move led to anger from parents and then plans from Fareham MP Suella Fernandes to set up a new school specially designed to offer A-levels.
However, the college is now re-introducing the option to students that have the highest GCSE grades this September.
The college says that students with top grades will be handed the opportunity to study an AS/A-level subject alongside its Level 3 Btec programme at either the main campus or the Cemast campus in Lee-on-the-Solent.
These subjects are physics, maths, biology, computing, English literature and business, however, each subjects are assigned to specific Btec programmes.
This is a significant development in post-16 education, especially for students in the Fareham district. It will give them greater choice for future education within the area and increase their prospects for the future.Suella Fernandes, MP for Fareham
Students interested in pursuing a full A-level programme will be assessed for their suitability at the start of the course.
Miss Fernandes said she was delighted that the college had decided to bring back courses that related to so-called Stem subjects – science, technology, engineering and maths.
‘This is a significant development in post-16 education, especially for students in the Fareham district,’ she said. ‘It will give them greater choice for future education within the area and increase their prospects for the future.’
Nigel Duncan, principal of Fareham College, said: ‘We have seen a significant leap in the ambition and drive of students seeking advanced technical careers through the programme of study at our Cemast campus.
‘By expanding this opportunity to additional subject areas across the college, this will give more of our students a chance to not only exceed a traditional A-level programme’s UCAS points, but also equip them with a competitive edge through the combination of technical and academic knowledge.’
Professor Paul Hayes, deputy vice-chancellor at the University of Portsmouth backed the new scheme.
He said: ‘The university values applications from students on technical programmes.
‘A combined technical and academic programme from Fareham College has the potential to make an applicant stand out from the crowd.’
Professor Graham Baldwin, vice-chancellor at Southampton Solent University supported the scheme, stating: ‘A combined programme like this has the potential to give applicants a wider range of choices and opportunities when pursuing careers.’
Miss Fernandes’ bid for the new free school was delayed to open until next September with a location still to be pinned down.
Those wishing to find out more about the opportunity are asked to attend the college’s open events.
The main college campus hosts its open event from 5pm to 7pm on February 1 with Cemast hosting its open event the next day at the same time.