The Department has two principal sources showing participation in education and other activities by young people as they transition between ages 16 and 19. Destination measures show the activities of young people in the year following their completion of Key Stage 4 (GCSEs) and Key Stage 5 (A levels and other Level 3). The 16-18 participation statistical first release (SFR) shows snapshot estimates of participation in different activities at each of academic ages 16, 17 and 18.
Destination measures show the percentage of students with sustained participation in education or employment over six months following the end of their phase of study. Information on pupil destinations is published annually on GOV.UK at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-destinations.
The attached table A shows the proportion of students in sustained study at further education or other FE providers since 2010 following their completion of Level 3 16-18 study (state-funded mainstream schools and colleges in England). See table NA10 in the Key Stage 5 national tables document for full breakdowns.
The attached table B shows the proportion of students in sustained study at further education or other FE providers since 2010 following their completion of Key Stage 4 study (state-funded mainstream schools in England).
Estimates of national participation rates in England at academic ages 16, 17 and 18 are provided in the Department for Education SFR ‘Participation in education, training and employment: 2016’ published at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/participation-in-education-training-and-employment-2016. These differ from the destination measures estimates provided above because they are not linked to previous study and provide estimates for the whole population, and they are based on a snapshot of activities at the end of the calendar year (rather than over a 6 month period).
The attached table C shows estimates of the proportion of young people participating in full time education at general FE, tertiary and specialist colleges at academic age 16 and 18, at the end of 2016.
Note that the SFR also provides estimates of participation by level and type of qualification.