A summary of draft Programme for Government and related targets.
Increase the proportion of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds who achieve at least five GCSEs at A*-C or equivalent including GCSEs in maths and English:
Make the Education and Skills Authority (ESA) operational in 2013:
2013-2014: structural, financial and other actions to establish new body.
2013-2014: single education authority established and fully functional.
The Department of Education has refused to release the total cost of the project to date but it reached £12.1 million as of 31 August 2011.
Upskill the working age population by delivering over 200,000 qualifications:
Qualifications refer to level 2 and above qualifications from essential skills, further education, higher education and training programmes.
Improve literacy and numeracy levels among all school leavers, with additional resources targeted at areas of educational underachievement:
2013-2014 & 2014-2015: Implement and monitor programme.
Support people (with an emphasis on young people) into employment by providing skills and training:
The 114,000 target includes 106,000 jobseeker’s allowance claimants finding work and 8,000 who currently receive the employment and support allowance, incapacity benefit and income support. The 25,000 new jobs target in the Programme for Government is separate, with the majority of the 114,000 expected to fill vacancies advertised through the Employment Service and other sources such as newspaper advertising and private employment agencies.
Increase the proportion of children who reach the expected level of English:
(a) When leaving primary school (key stage 2):
(b) by the end of key stage 3:
Increase uptake in economically relevant science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) places:
Targets were revised following the Programme for Government (previously 180, 360 and 540). Places will be located at Queen’s University Belfast, the University of Ulster and the six regional colleges. 23,930 students were enrolled in STEM courses in Northern Ireland higher education institutions in 2010-2011.