A University Technical College is a type of secondary school for 14–19 year-olds led by a university sponsor and co-sponsored by leading industries. It offers learning in a practical context with support from leading national and international employers.
A typical UTC:
• Is a school for 14–19 year-olds with 500–800 pupils and has a longer school day;
• Provides an integrated curriculum where the academic subjects of GCSEs, high-quality technical qualifications and A levels are taught in the context of technical specialism; and
• Makes sure that each student has a clear choice of progression routes into higher education, apprenticeships and employment.
The Baker Dearing Educational Trust (BDT) was founded by Lord Baker and Lord Dearing to develop and promote the concept of University Technical Colleges. Today they are a small, flexible organisation that sits at the centre of the UTC network. Their focus is on promoting and supporting new and existing UTCs.
BDT helps UTCs benefit from being a part of a bigger network by providing opportunities to share good practice, attend seminars, and stretch budgets through joint procurement. Its educational advisors help to develop curricula and advise on suitable technical qualifications. It also supports UTCs with setting standards, issues around leadership and management, and through liaising with the universities and employers who are UTC partners. BDT works closely with the Department for Education.