IOE - Faculty of Education and Society


Empowering young people: the IOE joins the Fair Education Alliance

1 November 2016

Man working in a carpentry workshop

The UCL Institute of Education (IOE) is delighted to join the Fair Education Alliance and to join forces with other leading organisations to bring the advantages of education to all.

The Fair Education Alliance is a coalition for change in education comprising UK organisations including Barnardos, the National Literacy Trust, the NAHT, the NUS, Save the Children, Teach First, UCAS and the University of Oxford.

Its aim is to work towards ending the persistent achievement gap between young people from our poorest communities and their wealthier peers. Committed to this common goal, the Alliance works collectively to find solutions to address educational inequality, as well as annually monitoring the progress made to narrow the gap.

As the world's leading centre for research and development in education, with a commitment to social justice at the heart of our mission, we hope to work with the Fair Education Alliance to help it achieve all five of its impact goals, from literacy and numeracy at primary school, through to narrowing the gap in university graduation.

However, for the initial focus of our work with the Alliance, we have chosen an area which sometimes receives less public attention than the school and university sectors: Impact Goal 4, to narrow the gap in the proportion of young people taking part in further education or employment-based training after finishing their GCSEs.

The transition from education to work can be hard to achieve for those from lower income backgrounds, and we have long argued for a more unified 14-19 curriculum to ensure that all young people experience both theoretical and applied learning opportunities that empower them to make informed choices for the future.

Recent research from our Centre for Post-14 Education and Work has focused on building local and regional high skills ecosystems, in which employers, post-16 education providers and local and regional organisations collaborate to develop the technical and vocational education required for economic prosperity.

This has involved innovative, sustainable partnerships between FE providers and employers to encourage the design and delivery of new learning opportunities, as well as stimulating changes in the workplace itself.

Our aim is to provide young people with high quality technical and vocational education pathways and clearer progression routes into employment and further study.

We are excited to be joining the Fair Education Alliance, and our membership will be an important way for us to build new partnerships which will inform our research, help us to inform policy and practice, and make a real difference to those who have most to gain from the positive impact of education on their future health, happiness and career prospects.



Media contact

James Russell

Tel: 020 3108 8516

Email: james.russell@ucl.ac.uk