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18 Mar 2016

Education Secretary visits Sports Technology Institute to emphasise importance of maths skills

Maths equation

The Education Secretary and Loughborough MP, Nicky Morgan, was at Loughborough University’s Sports Technology Institute today (18 March) to find out how triathletes and their coaches use maths as part of their training and development programmes.

During her visit the MP urged sixth forms and FE colleges in the East Midlands to offer students the chance to study the Level 3 practical maths qualification, Core Maths.  

Encouraging students to study the Core Maths course is part of the solution to boosting practical maths skills in the East Midlands which are in high demand among employers. A YouGov poll, released today, shows 85% of businesses in the East Midlands say that employees with practical maths skills have a competitive edge over their colleagues. This is above the national average of 80%, showing these skills are valued more highly in the East Midlands than elsewhere.

Nicky Morgan’s call is being supported by East Midlands Chamber (Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire) and the Core Maths Support Programme (CMSP), which want more students to be able to develop their practical maths skills.

The Education Secretary, the Chamber and CMSP want schools and colleges, parents and employers to be more aware of how Core Maths can help equip students with the applied and practical maths skills that will better prepare them to get ahead in work, study and life.

Nicky Morgan said: “Core Maths qualifications are backed by employers and help students to address the practical problems they may encounter in the world of work.

“These qualifications will provide young people with the skills they need to improve their life chances and compete with the best in the world, regardless of their background. That’s why today I am urging all sixth forms and further education colleges in the East Midlands to make this new practical maths qualification available to their students.”

Dr Andy Harland, Director of Loughborough University’s Sports Technology Institute, said: “A good understanding of maths makes a difference to so many aspects of life. We use it every day in our work in the Sports Technology Institute. For instance, our researchers use it to make calculations as part of their projects and athletes who work with us use it to assess their performance. There’s no doubt that maths will maximise your opportunities for the future.”