Commenting on today’s A-Level results, Marcus Mason, Policy Manager for Employment and Skills at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said:
“Students and teachers across the UK deserve to be congratulated for achieving a strong set of academic results. Businesses will applaud the increased take up in science and maths, subjects that are vital for the success of the UK economy. However, the continued decrease in the take up of foreign languages is a worrying trend as many businesses report that there is a skills gap in this area. Having strong knowledge of a foreign language is an excellent way of preparing young people for the wide-range of opportunities available in today’s globalised world.
“The halting of continuous grade inflation will also help to restore business confidence in A-levels.
“Despite strong academic results, youth unemployment remains persistently high, and action must be taken to ensure young people are attractive candidates to employers looking to hire. Young people should leave the education system with a career direction that is relevant to them and the skills and attitude that employers want.
“Pupils should be exposed to local businesses during their schooling – as this is one of the best ways to learn about local labour market demands and opportunities. Better careers education from primary school age, compulsory work experience placements and employer visits in schools and colleges will equip students with the best possible chances of finding employment.