Medway parents and students are being asked if they want Medway to have one of the country’s first University Technical Colleges (UTC).

These are being set up by the government to provide a mixture of vocational and academic training for 14-18 year-olds. The proposed UTC in Medway would specialise in construction and engineering, and would be sponsored by the University of Greenwich, MidKent College, Medway Council and local employers. If the plan gets the go ahead it would open in September 2013 and provide up to 600 places for students.

They would sit GCSEs followed by A levels and vocational qualifications, such as BTECs. Local employers would provide practical training with the funding for the UTC coming from central government. The typical school day of a UTC runs from 8.30am to 5.00pm to prepare students for the working week and to allow for extra teaching and practical time. There is no homework; all work is done within school hours. Extra curricula activities all happen within the school day.

They allow students to study subjects they are really interested in, which are taught in industry standard facilities by teachers with real life practical experience.

Medway Council is working in partnership with the University of Greenwich, Mid Kent College and the Royal College of Military Engineering together with local employers including BAE Systems, engineering specialists Delphi, construction firm BAM and commercial property company Land Securities. A number of sites in Medway are being considered for the new UTC including an unused block at Brompton Barracks. Residents can say what they think about this proposal by filling in a simple survey on Medway Council’s website at

When applying to the Department For Education to start a UTC you need to be able to demonstrate it is wanted by local parents and pupils. The council hopes to use answers from this survey in its application.