Your choices at 16 years old

So what are your choices at 16 years old?


Following GCSEs there are a lot of options to think about before making the right choice for you. You’re expected to stay in education or in some recognised form of employment with training until you’re 18 but this doesn’t have to be at school.


Find out more about all of your options by viewing the YouTube video and refer to the handy guide below.

Click the guide to view a full-sized version

Plymouth’s Apprenticeship Opportunities Bulletin for School Leavers – August 2020

To make this easier for you, we have collated the current apprenticeship opportunities available in Plymouth. Take a look at our Bulletin to find out more about the local employers recruiting, the training providers involved and how to apply for these exciting apprenticeships. View the Apprenticeship Vacancy Bulletin

Thinking ahead - advice for navigating your way to University or College

Post16 Bursaries available

What a bursary is for

A bursary is money that you, or your education or training provider, can use to pay for things like:

  • clothing, books and other equipment for your course

  • transport and lunch on days you study or train

If you’re aged 16 to 19

You could get a bursary to help with education-related costs if you:

  • study at a publicly funded school or college in England - not a university

  • are on a training course, including unpaid work experience

A publicly funded school is one that does not charge you for attending it.

What you'll get

There are 2 types of 16 to 19 bursary:

  • a bursary for students in vulnerable groups
  • a discretionary bursary

Bursary for students in vulnerable groups

You could get a bursary worth up to £1,200, depending on your circumstances and benefits.

Discretionary bursary

You could get a discretionary bursary if you need financial help but do not qualify for a bursary for students in vulnerable groups. Your education or training provider decides how much you get and what it’s used for

How can I find further details?

Colleges and schools can provide advice on the process to apply for funding.

Student guide to Post16 qualification results 2020

We understand how unsettling the last few months may have been for you, since schools, colleges and other providers were closed to many and exams were cancelled.

This guide should help you understand how results have been awarded this year and where to find more information.

Useful links to support choosing your next steps at 16 years old with Skills Launchpad Plymouth

Make sure you feel ready to get back out there – check out the support available if you are feeling anxious, confused, lost or overwhelmed Find out about Plymouth’s current employment picture and learn about our industry sectors which are growing fast creating new job opportunities Consider earning while you learn through an apprenticeship Consider gaining valuable work experience through a traineeship Consider becoming a volunteer to gain valuable new skills and experience Develop yourself through further study and training opportunities Too much choice out there? You can always learn more about your career options

Your Post 16 Choices and opportunities available in Plymouth

What's your next move here in Plymouth? Compare your options after GCSE. Click here or on the image below to view the guide in full.

Useful Parents' and Carers' Information Pack

It has been a challenging time for schools, students, you as parents and carers, and the school community, and we want to support you in helping your child to prepare for their next steps. View the Parents' and Carers' Information Pack here

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