As a former school governor, helping our young people and backing our schools and colleges is one of my top priorities as local MP.
I have a strong relationship with Havant & South Downs College having visited many times since 2015 to spend time with students, listening to their views and helping them understand politics.
Last month I was there twice – to meet students and then speak at their successful business breakfast event.
It’s great that South Downs are engaging with local businesses, especially as the new government T-levels will require 315 hours of work experience over the duration of the course.
These new T-levels start in 2020 and will be the most ambitious post-16 reforms since the introduction of A-levels.
The new qualification will be a vocational equivalent to A-levels and will give young people the skills for a changing workplace.
But while T-levels will be an important introduction, A-levels will remain a fundamental part of the system, especially for those students wishing to go onto higher education.
Last month I had the chance to help politics students at South Downs revise for the new reformed A-levels, with a lesson on the Conservative Party.
The new A-levels are linear qualifications taken over two years with assessment at the end of the course.
The AS is being retained but it has been decoupled to become a standalone qualification that no longer contributes to the overall A-level grade. It is hoped that by introducing linear A-levels, it will remove the burden of repeated exams, and give teachers more time and freedom to focus on providing high quality teaching.
I am committed to the government’s plan for a good education for all, from primary level through to colleges and universities, putting an emphasis on making sure that young people have both the academic education they need, while equipping them with the skills valued by employers.
Don’t forget nominations are now open for my third Havant Small Business Awards.
Whether it’s a favourite cafe, pub or restaurant, a tradesman who has gone the extra mile, or a local business leader or apprentice who has inspired you, all nominations are welcome.
I’m already looking forward to seeing the nominations for this year and I encourage everyone to visit my website alanmak.org.uk/nominate to find out more.