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School leaving age is raised

Published: Tuesday, 02 December 2008   Category: Government policies

A new law passed this week will ensure young people remain in compulsory education or training until the age of 17 from 2013 and 18 from 2015.

The Education and Skills Act has been given Royal Assent, as the government attempts to improve skills levels within the UK workforce.

In the wake of the Leitch Review, those who leave the education system early may find there are fewer employment opportunities available to them.

Children, schools and families secretary Ed Balls said that in a rapidly changing labour market and the current tough economic conditions, a job for life is a thing of the past.

He added: "We must have an evolving education system that reflects the requirements of employers and the fast pace of change in business."

Research conducted in November by the 1994 group indicated that four out of five university leavers are satisfied or very satisfied in their graduate jobs.

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